‘Occupy Wall Street’ and the Appraiser

I only pay enough attention to the news to know that there are a whole lot of angry people on Wall Street (and scattered across the country) right now.  “All Day…All Week….Occupy Wall Street,”  is their chant.  Okay, so it doesn’t technically rhyme, but I think we get the point.  Or do we?  Come to think of it…I am not really sure what their point is.  Oh, I know they are upset at the ‘Big Banks,” but beyond that;  Does anyone really know what is making them so angry…or more importantly-what they want to be changed?

If anyone has a right to be mad at the big banks right now, it is we appraisers.   Let’s face it, we’ve been blamed for the housing crises, kicked to the curb, and relegated to only being spoken to through those large AMCs that we all love.  But is that really the fault of Mr. Chase or Mrs. BOA?  Perhaps it is Washington we ought to be blaming.  Yet, I do not see too many real estate appraisers on Wall Street OR in front of the Lincoln Memorial.

This whole ‘protest movement’ has got me doing a lot of thinkin.  We ought to do something about all the greed and corruption in America!  That’s right…I am calling upon you, my fellow appraisers, to stand up and make your voices heard!  Are you with me?  Okay.  Here is my suggestion:

It is time we, as Americans, get off the soapbox and get back to work!  That’s right.  If you do not have a job, your job is to be finding a job.  Enough with the entitlement mentality already.  You do not have a ‘right’ to a job.  You do not have a ‘right’ to free education.  You do not have a ‘right’ to all of your loans being forgiven out of the goodness of some big bank CEO’s heart.  You have only three rights in this country:  The Right to Life.  The Right to Liberty. And the Right to the Pursuit of Happiness (notice that was the pursuit only).

There is a reason, I think, that we do not find many appraisers on Wall Street, in Occupy Los Angeles, Portland, Salt Lake City, or any other city for that matter.  Oh, there may be a few, but the majority of us are too busy WORKING to be out there.  Don’t get me wrong, I do not have a beef with anyone who wants to express their opinion.  The First Amendment to our honored Bill of Rights vouchsafes that right.   But, I think we spend too much time talking in this country and not enough time rolling up our sleeves and getting the job done.

I recognize that this particular article is much more political than I typically write.  My purpose this week is not to offend.  Rather, it is to send out a big thank you to my fellow real estate appraisers.  Thank you for being the backbone of this country.  Thank you for getting up each morning and just getting the job done.  Thank you for working hard to provide for yourselves and your families each day.  Thank you…well…for being American.

“All day…All Week…Occupy….Your Appraisal Office!”

Now, go create some value!


Dustin Harris is a multi-business owner, but he made his fortune as a self-employed, residential real estate appraiser. He has been appraising for nearly two decades. He is the owner and President of Appraisal Precision and Consulting Group, Inc., and is a popular author, speaker and mentor. He owns and operates The Appraiser Coach (www.theappraisercoach.com) where he personally consults and mentors other appraisers helping them to also run successful appraisal companies and increase their net worth.  He is also the Founder and President of Your Appraisal Office (www.yourappraisaloffice.com) which implements some of the systems he has developed to help lower costs and free up time for real estate business owners.   He and his wife reside in Idaho with their four children. This article may be reproduced and distributed only in its entirety without permission from the author.



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