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To protect the real estate market and limit conflicts of interest, Appraiser Independence Requirements (AIR) do not allow a real estate agent to directly select a home’s appraiser. With that said, it is important that agents are informed and equipped to ensure the assigned appraiser meets competency requirements related to the home’s features.

Recent studies have shown that when marketed correctly, Pearl Certified high-performing homes sell for an average 5% premium, and Pearl has established some best practices for real estate agents to ensure a competent and fair appraisal.

Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, and FHFA Guidelines: Competent Appraisal Professionals

  • Appraisers are required to consider the energy-efficient features of a home and make adjustments in the appraised value as the market supports these adjustments. Often, appraisers are not made aware of these features or are familiar with the additional value they provide, so they are not taken into consideration.

How Pearl Helps

  • While Pearl, along with our Appraisal Advisory Council, are working to increase appraiser awareness nationwide, there are components within the Pearl Home Certification Report that assist appraisers and lenders in the valuation process of a high-performing home.

    • Pearl’s Lender Letter: In each home’s certification Lender Letter, Pearl highlights the requirements that are necessary to be considered competent to value a high-performing home and directs the lender to the Valuation of Sustainable Building Professional Development Program Registry.

    • Pearl’s Appraiser Letter: Pearl’s Appraiser Letter provides appraisers with the basis of Pearl’s Certification standards and reminds them of Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, and FHFA guidelines to ensure their appraisal accurately reflects the higher value of the home’s high-performing features.

An inadequate appraisal can leave thousands of dollars on the table, and the home’s real estate agent has a fiduciary duty to ensure that does not happen. With Pearl’s Certification Report and enhanced marketing of a Pearl Certified listing, the homeowner and listing agent can rest assured that all of the home’s value is made visible.

Need a refresher on how to best market a high-performing home? Head over to our marketing resources page for a look at samples of the marketing package we provide with each Pearl Certified home.


Pearl Certification is transforming the housing market. We’re making a visible difference nationwide for homeowners and the businesses that serve them.