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Real Estate Appraisal Trainees Entering Growing Market; Facing Dramatic Increase in Education Requirement

Jun. 6, 2006

— Kaplan Professional Schools is Helping Professionals Meet the New Standards —

Lake Forest, CA, June 6, 2006 – Jobs in the appraisal field are growing, and the organizations responsible for the regulation of education and standards  — The Appraisal Foundation, the Appraiser Qualifications Board and the Appraiser Standards Board – have put in place a new and more stringent set of education requirements to ensure that appraisers conduct their business at the highest standards. 

Effective January 1, 2008, the rules will change:
Licensed Appraiser – Education hours will increase from 90 to 150.
Certified Residential Appraiser – Education hours will increase from 120 to 200 hours and an Associates Degree will be required.
Certified General Appraiser – Education hours will increase from 180 to 300 hours and a Bachelor’s Degree will be required.

“Kaplan Professional Schools supports the effort to increase standards in the appraisal profession, and we will work closely with the Appraiser Qualifications Board to develop the courses that will assist new and experienced appraisers to understand the ethical guidelines of their profession – and to help them work within those guidelines,” said Josh Levenson, President of Kaplan Professional Schools. 

In the past year, Kaplan Professional Schools has seen an increase of nearly 10% in appraisal training.  According to the National Bureau of Labor Statistics, in 2004, appraisers and assessors of real estate held about 102,000 jobs.  According to the Bureau, the employment of appraisers and assessors of real estate is expected to grow faster than the average from 2004–14. 

Real estate appraisal is a highly regulated industry with strict standards of practice and ethics.  Substantial fines are given for those who do not follow the rules. But the high salaries and flexible schedules continue to make appraisal an attractive career.

While there is broad speculation about the real estate bubble bursting, appraisers are not as affected by a downturn.  Home refinances, home improvement loans and other transactions require the continued services of an appraiser.  In addition, the small number of appraisers in some regions makes room for new professionals.

The process for becoming an appraiser varies in each state, depending upon the level of appraiser.  The cost ranges from $249 to $1,239 for exam preparation and test fees.  The current education requirements range from 75-120 hours.  However, one of the most challenging aspects about becoming certified is the required 2,000-2,500 hours of appraising experience over a 24-30 month time period.  Candidates must find an experienced appraiser who will mentor, train and compensate them for their work.

Kaplan Professional Schools’ Appraiser Training Programs include training and continuing education for trainee appraisers, licensed appraisers, certified residential appraisers and certified general appraisers. 

Classes are being conducted at schools across the country in preparation for the large number of people seeking an appraisal licensing before the requirements increase in 2008. 

About Kaplan Professional Schools
Kaplan Professional Schools, a Kaplan Professional company, provides licensing and continuing education for the real estate (commercial and residential), appraisal, home inspection, mortgage, contractor, insurance and financial services industries.  Kaplan Professional Schools is a division of Kaplan, Inc., leaders in education and test prep and a wholly owned subsidiary of The Washington Post Company (NYSE: WPO). With more than 50 locations, Kaplan Professional Schools offers both classroom and distance education to help students earn their state certifications.  Kaplan’s instructors are the leaders in their field, with many years of industry and teaching experience.  Distance education courses include textbook correspondence and online learning.   For further information, please visit www.kaplanprofessionalschools.com or call 1-800-621-9621.

About Kaplan, Inc.
Kaplan, Inc. is a leading provider of educational and career services for individuals, schools and businesses and is comprised of four divisions: Kaplan Test Prep and Admissions, which offers test prep and admissions services worldwide, including K12 services for schools; SCORE!, which offers after-school learning programs for children; Kaplan Professional, which offers licensing and continuing education training and compliance tracking; and Kaplan Higher Education, which offers postsecondary certificate and degree programs online and through 76 campus-based locations. Kaplan is a wholly owned subsidiary of The Washington Post Company (NYSE: WPO). For more information about Kaplan, please visitwww.kaplan.com.

Press contacts:

Communications Director
Jenna Held
Office: 312-894-0693
jenna.held@kaplan.com
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