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Commitment to Diversity

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The Appraisal Institute empowers individuals and nurtures an environment that inspires and encourages diversity, equity and inclusion.

Over the last two years, the Appraisal Institute has been amplifying and accelerating DE&I initiatives and partnerships to bring about positive change, including improving diversity within the profession through the Appraiser Diversity Initiative in collaboration with Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and the National Urban League, and with our Minorities and Women Course Scholarship from the Appraisal Institute Education and Relief Foundation.

The profession does have a lot of work to do to achieve greater racial, ethnic and cultural diversity among appraisers. Representation is a leading force for equity and inclusion in every profession. We recognize that recruiting for greater diversity will make us stronger and more representative of the communities we work in and contribute to greater cultural awareness.

Appraisals by AI Designated Members – who are technically trained in their field and adhere to our Code of Professional Ethics – remain the gold standard in real estate valuation. Appraisal is one piece of a larger ecosystem to look at when it comes to housing issues. Ensuring unconscious bias doesn’t play a role in appraisals and seeking broader solutions to diversity, equity and inclusion in housing is a priority for the Appraisal Institute. We know homeownership is one of the most critical factors in economic equity, and we know Black and brown communities have been historically underrepresented as homeowners. Creating a more equitable housing environment in this country will take solutions advanced by real estate brokers/agents, banks, government agencies, appraisers and others.

We know unconscious bias is human and exists in various forms, and no profession is immune from that. We need to educate ourselves about potential bias and how to interrupt it. What is important is that we continue to equip our membership with tools to recognize and interrupt unconscious bias and ensure they have a deeper understanding of the root of racial inequities in this country.

Appraisals and appraisers are one important part of the broader real estate ecosystem, and consumers have options if they are concerned about an appraisal. 

 


LISTEN NOW!

Removing Barriers: A Conversation about DE&I

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Listen to episode four of the Face Value podcast, where host Warren Boizot, SRA, AI-RRS, is joined by Claire Aufrance, MAI, SRA, Elaine Liz-Ramirez, MAI, AI-GRS, and Ayako Marsh Miranda, SRA. The group covers leadership, Diversity, Equity and Inclusion and the Appraisal Institute’s current and ongoing efforts in this space. 

 

 

 

Appraisal Bias: Taking Action, Leading the Conversation

As AI membership, and likely all appraisers, are aware, the past couple of years have found us facing the issue of appraisal bias. Even the words are difficult to hear and against what appraisers stand for in our work. Yet, this challenging issue also provides an excellent opportunity to educate the public about the role of the appraiser, a chance to look at how we can take additional steps to help consumers and focus on making our profession more diverse and inclusive now and in the future. Here are some of the ways the Appraisal Institute is addressing the issues.

Collaboration

  • AI is collaborating with other valuation-focused organizations such as The Appraisal Foundation, American Society of Appraisers, American Society of Farm Managers and Rural Appraisers, International Association of Assessing Officers, National Society of Real Estate Appraisers and MBREA | The Association for Valuation Professionals.
  • Through collaboration, we have hosted webinars to share the value appraisers bring to real estate transactions and clarify how we fit into the broader home appraisal ecosystem.

Media

  • AI’s president is often interviewed, sharing salient points during lengthy Q&A. Unfortunately, only a few important points typically are covered.
  • AI is nurturing relationships with current media contacts, establishing new connections, and telling our story as often as possible.
  • AI has enjoyed coverage in many high-profile national and local media outlets, including Bloomberg, The Washington Post, NBC.com, HousingWire, National Mortgage News and National Public Radio.
  • AI chapters and members are urged to send media inquiries to our national Director of Communications, Brent Roberts, broberts@appraisalinsitute.org.

Legislators and Regulators

  • AI’s representatives have testified before Congress.
  • AI has provided input to the Biden administration’s Property Appraisal and Valuation Equity Task Force (PAVE).
  • AI has provided input to advance model state legislation on valuation bias and fair housing.
  • AI has driven numerous discussions that focus on protecting consumers AND advocating for appraisers.
  • AI is giving a consistent and balanced public message, earning us a seat at the table.
  • AI’s consistent message allows legislators and regulators to find our message firm in advocating for appraisers, yet open to conversations on solving complex challenges.
  • Questions about the efforts in Washington and in state capitals should be directed to Bill Garber, director of government and external relations, bgarber@appraisalinstitute.org.

Appraiser Diversity Initiative

  • AI has a leading role in the ADI, which is a partnership with Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and the National Urban League.
  • AI received a $3 million commitment from Chase Bank to fund scholarships for diverse aspiring appraisers.
  • The ADI program is providing opportunities to aspiring appraisers and exposing new appraisers to the AI Body of Knowledge and the profession’s best education.
  • Learn more about the Appraiser Diversity Initiative.

PAREA

  • The AI Board of Directors has invested in the future of appraisal experience opportunities by developing a Practical Application of Real Estate Appraisal program. AI was awarded a $500,000 grant from TAF to supplement this investment.
  • This program will attract aspiring appraisers and give AI a first touch for education and mentors that guide them to successful completion.
  • To date, more than 30 states have accepted the PAREA program as an alternative to the experience requirement. This eliminates the challenge of finding a supervisor.
  • AI Board of Directors committed $2 million to seeing this program completed. This is a commitment to growing the residential appraiser population and potentially AI membership.
  • Learn more about PAREA

AI's Bias Research Solutions Project Team

  • AI’s Bias Research Solutions Project Team was created to review several studies that address the topic of appraisal bias.
  • During the past 1 ½ years, the Project Team has carefully analyzed studies published by government sponsored enterprises, university researchers and others, and have developed initial findings.
  • Once the Project Team’s report is finalized, it will be shared with the national Board of Directors, as well as AI’s membership.
  • National leadership also will be prepared to address the studies, if asked, by the media, legislators or other interested parties.

Going Forward

  • The Appraisal Institute continues to be a voice for professional appraisers and an active thought leader in education, guidance and policy.
  • AI must be a part of the ongoing conversations with the media, legislators and regulators.
  • AI must work with other organizations to protect the future of the profession.
  • AI must encourage new, and diverse, individuals to join our organization.
  • AI must stand with other organizations in defense of appraisers.
  • AI must continue to acknowledge and seek opportunities for growth and change.

Appraisers are a proud, dedicated, hard-working group of professionals, and together, no challenge is too big. Is AI a great organization now? Yes! Could we be even better in the future? Absolutely!

 


Unique Opportunities for Minorities and Women

The Minority and Women Directory is a search tool for local, state and federal agencies and financial institutions that would like to, or are required to, assign a portion of their work to qualifying minorities or women. Please access the Minority and Women Directory via the Appraisal Institute’s Find an Appraiser directory. Designated Members of the Appraisal Institute can add themselves to this directory for increased visibility.

To search the Minority and Women Directory, access the Find an Appraiser site and add the business, geographic, property type or other desired search criteria and then click the “Search” button. When the results of that Search appear, click the “Minority and Women Directory” check box. That check box will filter your search to include only those individuals who are listed in the Minority and Women Directory and who meet the search criteria you included. 

The AIERF Minorities and Women AI Course Scholarship is focused on providing financial assistance to help minority and women Candidates for Designation achieve their designation. To learn more about the scholarship requirements, or to apply, click here.

The AIERF Minorities and Women College Scholarships are awarded to minority and women undergraduate and graduate students pursuing academic degrees, or with demonstrated interest, in real estate appraisal and/or valuation. To learn more about the scholarship requirements, or to apply, click here.

 


Additional Resources

  • Learn more about Chase’s $3 million commitment to the Appraiser Diversity Initiative.
  • Get details about why college graduates should consider a career in valuation.
  • Companies interested in becoming a sponsor of the Appraiser Diversity Initiative can find out how.
  • Along with the Appraisal Institute’s other DE&I efforts, the organization has a Women’s Initiative Committee, which supports the growth of women in the profession, and a Diversity Panel which provides ideas, expertise and other input to AI’s Executive Committee. Additionally, AI’s University Relations Committee helps introduce the valuation profession to students. 
  • Anti-Harassment and Anti-Discrimination Policy
 

Contact Us

  • For questions about AI Education and Relief Foundation scholarships, contact Scott Brody.

  • For questions about the Appraiser Diversity Initiative, contact Bill Garber.

  • For media inquiries, or additional information about the Appraisal Institute's commitment to diversity, contact Brent Roberts.

 

The Appraisal Institute is a global professional association of real estate appraisers, with over 16,000 professionals in almost 50 countries throughout the world. Our mission is to empower valuation professionals through community, credentialing, education, body of knowledge and ethical standards. Organized in 1932, the Appraisal Institute advocates equal opportunity and nondiscrimination in the appraisal profession and conducts its activities in accordance with applicable federal, state and local laws. Individuals of the Appraisal Institute benefit from an array of professional education and advocacy programs, and may hold the prestigious MAI, SRPA, SRA, AI-GRS and AI-RRS designations. 

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