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Real Estate Professionals Thank Governor Noem for Streamlining Appraiser Certification

October 1, 2021

PIERRE, S.D. – Today, several real estate professionals from across South Dakota thanked Governor Noem and the Department of Labor & Regulation (DLR) for their efforts to streamline the state’s appraiser certification process.


Governor Noem also posted a video explaining the importance of streamlining this process and laying out the facts regarding her daughter Kassidy’s certification.


“I'm a licensed supervisor for new appraisers. It is way too tough for young folks to enter this field,” said Brian Gatzke, an appraiser from Brookings. “South Dakota was one of just five states that forced new potential appraisers to take a license level exam early on in the process. There's a roughly 30% passage rate for that exam. These are students who were getting A's and B's in their college classes, but they were asked to pass a 2nd-tier level exam at the entry level. These barriers to entry were an overreach of the regulatory authority. Governor Noem and the Department of Labor removed that entry exam, and my students will be better off for it.”


A shortage of appraisers is a nationwide problem, with total nationwide credentials steadily declining from 120,551 in 2008 to 95,731 in 2017. This problem is exacerbated in South Dakota because of prior barriers to entry in appraiser certification.


“As a realtor, it's my job to get South Dakotans into the home of their dreams,” said Lisa Blake, a realtor from Pierre. “Unfortunately, there are only three appraisers currently working in Pierre, so it often takes two months for families to close on a home. There's a definite shortage, and the restrictions need to be loosened so that more folks have the opportunity to enter this industry.”


"I've worked on both sides of the appraiser process," said Chase Kristensen, a loan officer from Mitchell. "I know how difficult, rigorous, and lengthy it is to become an appraiser. I went through that process myself, and it's unlike any other field I've ever witnessed. Now, as a rural banker, I'm seeing it take 60 to 160 days to get an appraisal ordered. Something needs to change, and I'm glad Governor Noem is taking steps to fix the process."