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The Future of Machinery and Equipment Appraisals

February 13, 2013

The world is moving forward, and whether we like it or not, we must all move forward with it. The image of the appraiser sitting in an office with a desk covered in paperwork and huge file cabinets stuffed with more paperwork is becoming as outdated as the 8-track. Technology is changing everything.

Many appraisal offices are now almost entirely paperless. They’ve stopped mailing printed equipment appraisal reports and now send electronic reports to their clients, whether attorneys, lending institutions, corporations, CPAs, or small businesses. They also send engagement letters electronically; when they receive the signature page, they file it in the client’s electronic folder. Some even scan a copy of the retainer check into that same folder rather than make a paper copy to put in a hard file.

One of the tricky aspects of this conversion to paperless is USPAP compliance — hard copies of comps and other research are required to be kept in the job file. But there are now apps that allow for saving documents as searchable .pdf files, so when the appraiser hits the print button on a comp, it prints as a searchable .pdf that’s saved into the client electronic file. No more comp piles!

Of course, there will always be holdouts — appraisers who are either unable or unwilling to embrace the new technological wonders that abound. But it wasn’t that long ago that folks held on to their cassette tapes as well, steadfastly refusing to purchase CDs. And we all know how that turned out.

The NEBB Institute endorses and strives to observe the highest standards of professional ethics to preserve the public trust inherent in the professional appraisal practice. The Institute provides initial and monthly comprehensive education, ongoing support, and a dynamic international network, and certifies professionals in the art of machinery/equipment appraisal and brokerage.

By: NEBB Institute

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