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Commercial Real Estate Appraisal Fundamentals


Learn about the basic techniques and methods of commercial real estate appraisals.

Ever heard the war story where an attorney receives an appraisal report at the eleventh hour, only to find that some critical element of the opinion does not match the particulars of his case? Or the appraiser's war story where they were provided with an effective date of value, and later had to re-do the appraisal on a holiday weekend because the client realized that he had specified the wrong date? When appraisers and their clients do not share an accurate understanding of the elements of the assignment, the opportunity for negative outcomes increases. This topic will provide a brief overview of commercial real estate fundamentals, and the basic techniques and methods available to appraisers. This basic information will then be applied to the many variables inherent in the appraisal contracting process. With an understanding of these variables, you will learn to accurately convey the appraisal problem and reach solid agreement with the appraiser on the assignment conditions necessary for a relevant and credible appraisal opinion. Use of the techniques presented in this information will help you to save time and money by avoiding common mistakes which may occur when ordering an appraisal.



Shawn E. Wilson, MAI

Shawn E. Wilson, MAI

Compass Real Estate Consulting, Inc.

  • The owner of Compass Real Estate Consulting, Inc., in Lakeland, Florida
  • 32 years of eminent domain and litigation–related appraisal experience, and has authored articles, presentations, and seminars on a variety of valuation topics
  • Contributing author to the Appraisal Institute textbook, Applications in Litigation Valuation: A Pragmatist’s Guide, and her professional articles have been published in The Appraisal Journal (Appraisal Institute), and Right-of-Way Magazine (IRWA)
  • Has authored seminars and presentations on valuation topics, including a litigation appraisal course for the Appraisal Institute in 1995
  • Has been a presenter at national conferences for the Appraisal Institute, the International Right-of-Way Association, and the International Association of Assessing Officers (IAAO)
  • Served as an instructor throughout the United States for education providers such as the Appraisal Institute, Lorman Continuing Legal Education, CLE Continuing Legal Education, American Law Institute CLE, the International Right-of-Way Association, and the Association of Eminent Domain Professionals
  • Has been qualified and has presented testimony as an expert witness in numerous jurisdictions, and has been appointed as a special magistrate to hear ad valorem tax appeals in several Florida counties
  • Areas of specialty include analysis of contributory value, and diminution in value related to stigma, NIMBYs, landfills, and other causes
  • State-certified General Real Estate Appraiser in Florida, Tennessee, and the island of Guam
  • Has been an MAI member of the Appraisal Institute since 1993, and served in a variety of elected positions, including five years on the National Board of Directors
  • Served on the Appraisal Practices Board of The Appraisal Foundation from July 2014 to September 2017, including one year as APB vice-chair and one year as APB chair
  • Member of the International Right-of-Way association, and is a past president of the Association of Eminent Domain Professionals
  • Has also been an AQB certified USPAP instructor since April 2018
  • Can be contacted at at

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