Plus, check out this exclusive interview that Appraisal Buzz had with webinar hosts Grant Norling, Co-Founder and VP Client Experience at Valcre, and Ross Litkenhous, CEO and Founder at Taxonics and Managing Partner and Founder at Cavalry Real Estate Advisors.
Appraisal Buzz: What is your background in the industry
Grant Norling, MAI: I am a commercial real estate appraiser with over two decades of industry experience. I have a broad range of production and leadership roles within a corporate valuation company, a local appraisal co-op and my own appraisal firm. I co-founded Valcre with a passion to create more efficient processes in the valuation industry for appraisers and their clients. Through application of time saving technology, appraisers can be successful while achieving a fulfilling life-work balance. I believe the appraisal industry can remain relevant if its professionals stay dedicated and adaptable to sweeping technological changes in the CRE industry.
Ross Litkenhous: I have spent my entire 20-year career building, leading, managing, and growing real estate tax companies at the local, national, and global levels. Most recently, I co-founded Cavalry Real Estate Advisors, a tech-forward national real estate tax consulting firm located in Washington DC. I’m also the founder and CEO of Taxonics, a real estate tax technology company that sells information, data, and tools that solve real estate tax problems.
Appraisal Buzz: What is this webinar going to cover?
Grant Norling, MAI: First, we want to highlight the near and long term career growth opportunities in the specialized tax appeal appraisal space. We will also be providing tips on how to break into the field, what skills you will need to be successful and examples of successful tax appeal cases.
Ross Litkenhous: This webinar will cover general real estate tax trends in the current market cycle, provide insight into tax appeal best practices and offer guidance on how appraisers can expand their offerings and skillset to capture new business opportunities in the tax appeal space.
Appraisal Buzz: Why should appraisers be diversifying their business practices into this area?
Grant Norling, MAI: Regardless of the market cycle, anytime is a good time to expand into tax appeal appraisal services. However, it just so happens that right now is perhaps the best time. There is a particularly large surge in tax appeal activity right now that is anticipated to persist into the foreseeable future, while at the same time long-term tax specialists are rapidly retiring. This segment is really primed to be reshaped over the next handful of years.
Ross Litkenhous: There are a lot of specialists retiring from the tax appeal sector at a time when demand for these services is spiking. Real estate taxes are a property owner’s single biggest annual operating expense. Real estate tax assessments are essentially an exercise in valuing property, within the guidelines of a specific jurisdiction. With a good understanding of how to navigate this space, appraisers are perfectly positioned to leverage their valuation skills to facilitate successful tax appeals.
Appraisal Buzz: With it being a slower time for residential appraisers right now, what is causing the spike in demand for property tax appeals?
Grant Norling, MAI: Residential appraisal firms are slow due to the spike of interest rates squashing the single family sale and finance markets. The same has happened in the commercial and multifamily segments along with eroding fundamentals and declining values. Assessors have struggled to react to changing market conditions and how to value particular assets based on emerging trends. Therefore in a lot of cases CRE assets are overassessed.
Ross Litkenhous: Most assessing offices utilize operational and market data that is 12-18 months behind actual market trends. With the recent sharp decline in market values due to interest rate increases, general inflation, and recessionary fears, recent assessments have not reflected true market conditions resulting in a spike in tax appeals.
Appraisal Buzz: Why should appraisers attend this webinar?
Grant Norling, MAI: If you are interested in tax appeal appraisal work but don’t know where to start, this webinar is a good fit for you. There are a lot of appraisal firms that really slowed down with the bank work drying up. Property tax appeal is a really busy segment that can help stabilize workflow. There has not been a better time.
Ross Litkenhous: This webinar will help appraisers explore opportunities to supplement their income through real estate tax appeals. Current market conditions will be quite strong for property tax specialists over the next 24 months. Appraisers can capitalize on that opportunity and increase their own bottom line by expanding into the tax appeal industry and leveraging their valuations skills, access to market data, and existing professional network.