Who doesn’t want to make more money? As an appraiser, your income potential is great! The trick is knowing HOW to grasp that potential, chew it up, and swallow it whole!
I’ve done the research for you using several authoritative sources and gathered tips and advice for you from two seasoned appraisers. I’m going to share what I’ve discovered about how you can earn more money as an appraiser over the course of several bite-size posts! Watch for them on our blog at https://www.datamasterusa.com/in-the-weeds-blog/ and on our Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn pages over the next several weeks!
Manage your time right and you can get more done in a day, which means that you can earn more money in a day. That doesn’t take a genius to figure that out. However, it does take a lot of study, trial and error, and in-the-trenches learning for you to figure out HOW to manage your time right. This subject alone is enough to write many books on, some of which you might have read already. To save you some time, I’ve picked out some of the top time-savers and included them in this post.
Before we move on, I’d like to mention another article on managing your time by DataMaster’s Marketer, Marty Hamilton: “How to Get Things Done When Everything Feels Important.” Marty’s article has more great, time-saving tips for you!
Set the Timer!
After some thoughtful research, I settled on the tips in “12 Smart Habits That Save You Time” by TopThink that fits into how I have successfully managed my time for decades. Here’s the rundown:
Time and Productivity
Work around 40 hours over 5 days to find an efficient balance between time and productivity. I know most appraiser work much more than this. But this is something to consider, cutting your hours but making the hours you do work more productive! This line of thought follows Parkinson’s Law, which states that work expands to fill the amount of time available, i.e. responsibilities contract when time is limited and extra time delays productivity.
Organize Your Stuff
Have a place for everything and put everything in it’s place. How much time do you spend looking for your keys, your purse, your wallet, or your phone every morning? Save yourself some hassle and stress and give your stuff a home where they always reside! No more searching! I do this with everything and it’s a rare day when I can’t find something at my office or at home!
Track Your Time
Just like a few dollars a day on snacks or lunch can add up to a substantial sum each month, five minutes on Facebook (or whatever your time-spend is) here and there throughout the day can add up to an hour or more per day (imagine how much time a month)! In small chunks you might think that you aren’t wasting time, when in reality you spent enough time on Facebook to read some chapters of a book, finish a report, or make several phone calls.
Sure, you’ve probably seen those studies that claim that creative people work best in clutter. Well, for those of us who aren’t focusing on creativity but are focusing on detailed, thought-squeezing work, clutter can actually distract us and throw our flow off. Get rid of the clutter and your brain will have less reasons to be distracted.
Consistently Follow Up
Preventative time-savers are great, and sending a follow up after every meeting will prevent problems in the future (saving you time!). Following up reminds you and your co-workers exactly what the meeting plans are, e.g. who is responsible for the photos of house A, who is calling Ms. Blanchard about the new appraisal request, who is taking the group to lunch next week (don’t want to mix that one up!) etc. Following up can prevent panic in the future, should those plans have been pureed up in the blender with the ten other main ideas that came out of the meeting.
Limit Your Internet
This goes hand-in-hand with the third bullet point above. Taking back some of your time throughout the day can provide big dividends. I’ll cover ideas on what to do with that extra time below in “Dead Time.”
Not sure how to keep your fingers off of your phone or keyboard? Control your internet surfing by using one of these apps suggested by Systweak:
- Social Fever
- Stay Focused
- Quality Time
Tackle Immediate Issues
If a task will take less than 15 minutes, do it right away, otherwise by the end of the day you might have a queue of “small” jobs waiting to be done, and there goes an hour! What’s worse than thinking you’re done for the day only to realize that you have a few of those mini tasks waiting for you in a large pile topped with a dingy, frayed bow?
Say that you’re waiting for a report that you can’t proceed without, you’re stuck in a doctor’s office, you’re on hold on the phone listening to the Piano Guys (hey, that’s not so bad!), you have five minutes before meeting starts, and other moments during the day with potential. So what do you do with that extra time? Fill those small breaks with productive activity! Work through some emails, make some quick calls, start your next blog post, check in on Uncle Robert with a quick text, or organize your schedule for tomorrow. Make your downtime productive, don’t toss it into the bottomless pit of endless scrolling or mindless zoning.
Sometimes change isn’t the best thing to embrace. Do you really need to shake up your routine just to shake up your routine? No! Don’t change your routine if you don’t need to. Resetting your routine takes time to figure out what works (when you already had figured out what works), and if you’re doing it just for the sake of change, rethink the changes. Routine isn’t always a bad thing, in fact, many times it’s a good thing if that routine saves you time!
Socializing is good for you and helps keep you healthier! Studies show that people who socialize are happier, healthier, and live longer, among other benefits. Being healthier keeps you productive and out there making more money instead of lying in bed with tissues and Tylenol! So whether you feel like it or not, make the effort to develop and maintain positive relationships with your family and friends!
How much time does it take you to drive from your office to the store then back again, or from your home to the bank and back again? What if you cut out that extra “out and back again” time and clumped it together? Running your errands in chunks instead of back-and-forth trips saves you a lot of time, how much depends on how far your errands are from your office or home. I save my errands that aren’t time-sensitive and knock them out in one trip. It’s all about using time efficiently!
Give these time-saving tips a try! Add them to the time-savers you’ve already discovered on your own and see how much more efficient you can be with your most precious resource, your time!
Looking for more tips on how to make more money as an appraiser? Watch for the next post “How to Make More Money Appraising: Upgrade Your Certifications.”