Mortgage volume has slowed down and in-turn appraisal volume has also slowed down. All the major lenders are having huge layoff's as well. When speaking with colleagues and within forum discussions, people are most often talking about how slow they are and how they've never been this slow. Even in our busiest of moments over the last decade, there were thousands upon thousands of other appraisers competing for the same work. With new regulation and changes industry wide, we have seen tremendous reductions in the number of people who remain in the industry as a whole and specifically appraisers. Just a few months back we were all busy feeling the impact of the more limited number of appraisers. I remember speaking with some appraisers at the time who were complaining about too much work and no time. To go from that to the slowdown is much like our weather in Chicago this year. Skipped from summer right pasts fall and into winter. Hopefully everyone made some good money and saved it.
Other thoughts and articles I have seen out there discuss future of the industry suggesting that if you have a full time job in the real estate industry you should consider getting a part-time job in something other than real estate. As with any line of work or career, there is an ebb and flow to it. Most of the discussions and article's I have found are over exaggerating the future state of the industry. We all remember when the HVCC came down, when values fell in 2008, how slow it was. Many of us, I am sure, know an appraiser (s) that let go of their license and are now in a different industry for fears of the future. Since that time we've all stayed pretty busy with the refinance boom. Those who do REO work have stayed busy with REO appraisals. In short, what I'm saying is there are always ups and downs in our industry, we all know this. This time is no different, we were busy, now we've slowed down, and we'll get busy again. With the down time you should concentrate on getting new clients(not just mortgage related) and catching up on side projects. Most importantly keep in mind the holidays are here, so having some free time isn't a bad thing.