National Inventory Certification Association – Education and certification for industry professionals
28 Jun 2017

Tampa, Florida Member Achieves Appraisal Examiner Certification

Congratulations to member Debra Palmer for achieving the designation of Certified Appraisal Examiner.

Debra PalmerPRESS RELEASE – The National Inventory Certification Association™ (NICA) is pleased to announce that member Debra Palmer, owner of Palmer Home and Business Inventory Professionals, has recently earned the designation of Certified Appraisal Examiner (CAE).

 

The growth of the personal property inventory industry has created an opportunity for personal property inventory professionals to serve as an Appraisal Examiner. This certification provides the credentials to assist appraisers by collecting the required information they need to create an accurate Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice (USPAP) compliant certified report. The purpose of a CAE designation is to establish recognition for this specialized service, providing the opportunity for appraisal firms to locate certified, qualified examiners, and for Certified NICA members to grow their businesses through additional revenue opportunities.

 

When completing an inventory service for residential and commercial clients, the inventory professional is often asked if they know the value of items, or if they can refer an appraiser. The CAE designation signifies that these contents inventory professionals have the knowledge and information required to collect and provide the necessary information for an appraiser to assign value. This allows for a two-way referral opportunity between these two industries.

 

To help ensure that the inventory service provider is prepared to serve the appraisal industry, the NICA Education Committee determined the requirements to achieve an Appraiser Examiner Certification.Only those who have earned their Certified Inventory Expert (CIE) or Certified Inventory Specialist (CIS) designation can apply for this additional level. They are also required to successfully complete the Customer Service and Appraisal Examiner courses, plus an elective, chosen from the NICA curriculum. This Committee included Members of NICA, an established property appraiser, and the Association Directors.

 

Managing Director Cindy Hartman states, “Debra has been providing personal property inventories for years in the Tampa area. This certification brings additional credibility to her company and also enables her to expand her service to serve more clients’ needs.  

 

Based in Tampa, Florida, Palmer Home and Business Inventory Professionals offers residential and business asset inventory services and now appraisal services to the Tampa metro area. 

23 Jun 2017

Friendswood, Texas Members Achieve CIS Designation

The National Inventory Certification Association congratulates owners of Lonestar Inventory, LLC for achieving the designation of Certified Inventory Specialist.

PRESS RELEASE – The National Inventory Certification Association™ (NICA) is pleased to announce that business partners Hassan Saiyid and Nash Khan, owners of Lonestar Inventory, LLC have recently earned the designation of Certified Inventory Specialist (CIS). Achieving this designation confirms their knowledge to provide professional residential and small business contents inventory services.

 

To earn this certification, they were required to pass a required selection of courses developed by NICA, with a grade of 85% or better, plus have an accumulation of a set number of Continuing Education Units through these courses and college education, combined. They also agreed to conduct business according to the asset industry Code of Ethics. The final step in achieving this certification was to pass the final exam.

 

There is an increasing awareness of the necessity and benefits of having a prepared photographic and written record of one’s personal property. This knowledge and the ever-increasing busy lifestyles of homeowners and business owners alike create a growing demand for a professional inventory service.

 

Achieving certification is not required for the contents inventory professional. Choosing to invest in  continuing education shows Hassan’s and Nash’s desire to learn the industry and let their clients know that they have gone the extra mile to ensure that Lonestar Inventory will be known as a quality company. Hassan states, “I have a finance and banking background. This knowledge encouraged me to begin an inventory service so I could help business owners, homeowners, and renters have this important information. When Nash and I developed our business partnership, we agreed achieving our certification would be one of the first steps in our start-up.”

 

Mike Hartman, Executive Director of NICA, said, “Nash has a background in entrepreneurship; combine that with Hassan’s finance knowledge, and you have a solid foundation of serious business men who see the value and need for documenting one’s assets. We are pleased to have a member provide these inventory services in the Houston area.”  

 

Lonestar Inventory is based in Friendswood, Texas, offering residential and business asset inventory services for many needs, such as disaster preparedness, collectibles, estates, separation of asset, business buy/sell agreements, and asset tracking.

20 Jun 2017

Indianapolis Inventory Professional Achieves Appraisal Examiner Certification

The National Inventory Certification Association congratulates member Jo Soard for achieving the designation of Certified Appraisal Examiner.

Jo SoardPRESS RELEASE – The National Inventory Certification Association™ (NICA) is pleased to announce that Jo Soard, owner of American Home Inventory Professionals, has earned the designation of Certified Appraisal Examiner (CAE).

 

The growth of the personal property inventory industry has created an opportunity for personal property inventory professionals to serve as an Appraisal Examiner. This certification provides the credentials to assist appraisers by collecting the required information they need to create an accurate Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice (USPAP) compliant certified report. The purpose of a CAE designation is to establish recognition for this specialized service, providing the opportunity for appraisal firms to locate certified, qualified examiners, and for Certified NICA members to grow their businesses through additional revenue opportunities.

 

When completing an inventory service for residential and commercial clients, the inventory professional is often asked if they know the value of items, or if they can refer an appraiser. The CAE designation signifies that these contents inventory professionals have the knowledge and information required to collect and provide the necessary information for an appraiser to assign value. This allows for a two-way referral opportunity between these two industries.

 

To help ensure that the inventory service provider is prepared to serve the appraisal industry, the NICA Education Committee determined the requirements to achieve an Appraiser Examiner Certification.Only those who have earned their Certified Inventory Expert (CIE) or Certified Inventory Specialist (CIS) designation can apply for this additional level. They are also required to successfully complete the Customer Service and Appraisal Examiner courses, plus an elective, chosen from the NICA curriculum. This Committee included Members of NICA, an established property appraiser, and the Association Directors.

 

Based in Indianapolis, Indiana, American Home Inventory Professionals offers residential and business asset inventory services to Indianapolis Metropolitan area. 

 

16 Jun 2017

Owner of Inventory Defense, LLC Achieves Appraisal Examiner Certification

The National Inventory Certification Association congratulates member Brandon Ely for achieving the designation of Certified Appraisal Examiner.

PRESS RELEASE – The National Inventory Certification Association™ (NICA) is pleased to announce that Brandon Ely, owner of Lyman, South Carolina-based Inventory Defense, LLC, has recently earned the designation of Certified Appraisal Examiner (CAE).

 

The growth of the personal property inventory industry has created an opportunity for asset inventory professionals to serve as Appraisal Examiners. This certification provides the credentials to assist appraisers by collecting the specific information they need to create an accurate Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice (USPAP) compliant certified report.

 

The purpose of a CAE designation is to establish recognition for this specialized service, providing the opportunity for appraisal firms to locate certified, qualified examiners. Additionally, estate attorneys, insurance agents, and financial planners often recommend that their clients obtain appraisals of their valuable items. The home inventory professional who has achieved his or her CAE designation can be a great resource for these referring professionals..

 

To help ensure that the inventory provider is prepared to serve the appraisal industry, the NICA Education Committee determined the requirements to achieve an Appraiser Examiner Certification. Only those who have earned their Certified Inventory Expert (CIE) or Certified Inventory Specialist (CIS) designation can apply for this additional level. They are also required to successfully complete the Customer Service and Appraisal Examiner courses, plus an elective chosen from the NICA curriculum. This Committee included Members of NICA, an established property appraiser, and the Association Directors.

 

Managing Director Cindy Hartman recalls, “Brandon joined NICA with a focus on achieving both this Certified Inventory Specialist and Certified Appraisal Examiner designations as quickly as possible. He is currently working a full time job, starting this inventory business, and attending school three nights a week to achieve an Accounting degree. He is a great example for all new business owners. When you have the drive and desire, anything is possible.”

 

Based in Lyman, South Carolina, Inventory Defense offers residential and business asset inventory services to upstate South Carolina as well as southwest North Carolina. 

14 Jun 2017

Easy Online Applications – CIS, CAE and Designation Renewal

We’ve had some questions about the streamlined application processes when achieving the Certified Inventory Specialist (CIS) and the Certified Appraisal Examiner (CAE) designations. Keeping your busy lifestyles in mind, we developed an online process that doesn’t include asking for the forms to be sent to you from our office.

The requirements to achieve each of the certifications are listed on the Certification page of the NICA website. It is a sub-page under Professional Development. Once you have completed the requirements:

  • Click on the “Submit CIS Application” or “Submit CAE Application” button.
  • Complete the online form.
  • You will receive an automated confirmation confirming your application was received.
  • The NICA office will notify you of acceptance once the Education Committee reviews and approves your application. If there are any questions, we will contact you.

To retain your designation each calendar year, return to the Certification page and click on the “Submit Certification Renewal” button. After you enter how you earned your 5 CEUs, submit the form and you will receive an automated confirmation. The Education Committee will review your application and will notify you of approval or request more information regarding your CEUs.

If you need further information about the certification or the application process, please feel free to contact the NICA office.

07 Jun 2017

NICA Member in Virginia Achieves CIS Designation

The National Inventory Certification Association congratulates member Mike Visgauss for achieving the designation of Certified Inventory Specialist.

The National Inventory Certification Association™ (NICA) is pleased to announce that Mike Visgauss, owner of Visgauss Consulting LLC, has recently earned the designation of Certified Inventory Specialist (CIS). Achieving this designation confirms his knowledge to provide quality residential and small business contents professional inventory services.

 

To earn this certification, Visgauss passed specified courses developed by NICA, agreed to conduct business according to the asset industry Code of Ethics, and accumulated a required number of Continuing Education Units. He then passed the certification exam, which is the final step in achieving this designation.

 

There is an increasing awareness of the necessity and benefits of having a prepared photographic and written record of one’s personal property. This knowledge and the ever-increasing busy lifestyles of homeowners and business owners alike create a growing demand for a professional inventory service provider.

 

Achieving certification is not required for the contents inventory professional. Choosing to invest in  continuing education shows Mike’s desire to learn the industry and let his clients know that he has gone the extra mile to ensure he provides quality inventory services. He states, “My 20 years as a Claim Superintendent for a major insurance company and over 16 years as a multi-line insurance agent provides a great foundation to begin my inventory business.”

 

Visgauss specialized in Homeowners and Commercial Property Insurance. He holds a Consultants and Producers License in Virginia. Focusing on the contents inventory industry, he recently added his Certified Inventory Specialist (CIS) designation to his list of achievements. Mike previously earned a Master in Business Administration degree, the Chartered Property and Casualty Underwriter designation, and is a Certified Fraud Examiner.

 

Based in Alexandria, Visgauss Consulting offers residential and business asset inventory services to the geographic areas of Alexandria, Northern Virginia, Long Island, and New York City.. For more information about Visgauss Consulting, visit http://www.vcllc.us.

31 May 2017

Be Prepared for Your Appraisal Examiner Project

When the Directors of the National Inventory Certification Association received their first Appraisal Examiner opportunity for Nugent Appraisal Services, their thought was “We hope we can represent Ray well!  Cindy said, “We didn’t have ‘real’ concerns, so to speak, since we’ve been doing inventories for years. However, representing someone other than ourselves did make me a little nervous.”  After their first Appraisal Examiner assignment, Ray asked them to share a couple “takeaways.” 

Take more tools than you expect for the job noted.

The assignment was a bedroom set and 2 rugs, so we didn’t figure we needed a flashlight. However, we did need one. Luckily we have flashlights on our phones, which was required to read the dark label, on a dark rug, in a dark basement.

Verify receipts. 

The client stated that she had matched the receipts up with the rugs, We failed to verify them, and when we began to type the report, found the receipts were not the correct ones. In the future we will always read the documentation presented and verify the measurements and other details.

Take control of the process.

Following up from the previous point, the client handed us the receipts and suggested we take the photos before we went to where the rugs were, which we did. Then, when we got to the rugs, we didn’t have the receipts with us to compare. Having them with us, and to take the photos of the receipts along with the rug, would have immediately shown us the receipts weren’t the right ones. When doing home inventories, we ALWAYS control the process and take the receipts to photograph along with the items – we failed to follow that “tried-and-true” method this time, and it caused issues when typing the report.

Let the client guide the “getting to know you” conversation.

Our client was very friendly and shared her business ventures, then encouraged us to tell her about what we do. Others might want to be just strictly business. Let the client direct the conversation, being cognizant of their body language to help determine if they are wanting to chit-chat or have you just get in and get the job done. Be respectful of their time, and you could very likely be referred to others.

Plan to be there longer than expected. 

Our client had additional items to document in addition to the ones discussed with Ray Nugent. Though we didn’t mind (Ray did tell us he suggested she take advantage of the hourly rate and add additional items to be appraised). Be sure to be prepared for this to happen, and allow yourself plenty of time.

Ask questions about the purpose of the additional item appraisals.

Our original purpose for this assignment was to collect information of the bedroom set and 2 rugs for the purpose of a donation. When she said she had additional items for us to document, we failed ask if they were also for donations or another purpose. This information is important for the appraiser.

24 May 2017

Have You Visited The New NICA Website Yet?

We’ve received a lot of positive feedback from members and would like to hear from you. If you haven’t visited the website yet, please do so. Mary Gillen created a site that met all the requests we received from members and the Website Committee. The site is responsive (adjusts to all sizes of devices) and meets the ADA Compliance requirements (Mary will share more about this in a future issue of our newsletter).

While you’re checking out the new website, please review your Directory listing to ensure your contact information and the link to your website are correct. The directory was highest on the list of requested improvements, so we are confident that you’ll be quite pleased with the new look.

Please also review the Certification Page, as we’ve streamlined the processes for applying for the Certified Inventory Specialist (CIS) and the Certified Appraisal Examiner (CAE) designations. The requirements to achieve these certifications are listed on this page as well.

What’s new? All applications are electronic, as we took into consideration that everyone’s schedule is quite busy. You can now apply for your designations via this online form – no need to send an email, request a form, wait for it to be emailed. etc. Additionally, when you have completed your 5 CEU requirement to renew your certification each calendar year, there is an online form for this as well. For all 3 applications, you just click on the button, complete the form, and click Submit. It’s that easy!

17 May 2017

Just Starting Out? How To Get New Business

How do I get new business?” the new consultant asked me as we sat, having coffee. Good question.

I was not conversing with a dumb fellow. The man who sat across the table had almost 30 years of solid HR/corporate training experience.

He is not alone.

There are many folks who have left the corporate world — by choice or downsizing — who have never had to drum up business in their lives. There were always sales teams to bring in the bacon, supporting everyone on the corporate farm. So when these folks go out on their own, what’s to be done?

I answered his question:

“Find what it is that your competition feels is ‘beneath’ them to do. That’s where the business is, and that’s always where the dough resides,” I told him.

He looked confused.

“What does that mean?” he inquired.

“You know your business better than anyone,” I told him. “But when it comes to new business prospecting, small business people and consultants make a huge mistake by only going after ‘the big kill,’ the contract everyone is fighting over. Meanwhile, there’s smaller business hiding in crevices out there that you can take to the bank. The small potatoes fill you up, my friend. Think about it. It’s out there.”

So we finished our coffee and went our separate ways. A month later, he called me, very excited. He had his first contract.

The “little guy” wins big.

“For days I thought about what you told me,” he said. “One afternoon I was driving along the highway and noticed a work crew along the side of the road. There was one guy supervising them. It made me think, ‘Hey, maybe those supervisors need training.’ When I got home, I visited the state’s Web site, and sure enough, there was an RFP for management training of the state’s road crew supervisors. I did a proposal, went to see ’em, and got a year’s contract. And you know what? They told me they had trouble finding a professional who would take it on.”

Plain hard work.

This is no fairy tale, folks. He worked extra hard that first year. He traveled all over the state, teaching some people who could’ve cared less, others hungry for the knowledge. It was not a glamorous gig. It was something his suited competition would never consider taking on. But my friend treated every class as if he was still in the corporate training room, and it paid off for him in many ways:

  1. He gained solid, real-world experience on his own that lead to bigger business.
  2. He had receivables he could count on to support his family.
  3. He made more money that first year than he would have made if he was still employed by a corporation.

Remember the quote from master Thomas Edison: “Many people miss opportunity because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work.”

Great advice from Associate Member Mary Gillen. Whether you’re just starting out or looking for new business, Mary can help you with her full-service marketing services – Website Development, Copywriting, Search Engine Optimization, and Social Media. Mary is a Web developer, writer, technical trainer and online marketer…all under one roof. She uses her 22 years of Web development experience to build websites for tech companies, associations, non-profits and small businesses, blending professional design with measurable business results. See Mary’s portfolio at http://marygillen.com

10 May 2017

Organizer and Inventory Professional Achieves Certification

NICA Congratulates Organizer and Inventory Professional Member Rachel Lyddy for achieving Inventory Specialist Certification.

PRESS RELEASE – The National Inventory Certification Association™ (NICA) is pleased to announce that Rachel Lyddy, owner of Louisiana-based iORGANIZE, LLC has recently earned the designation of Certified Inventory Specialist (CIS). Achieving this designation confirms her knowledge to provide quality residential and small business contents inventory services.

 

To earn this certification, Lyddy passed specified courses developed by NICA, agreed to conduct business according to the asset industry Code of Ethics, and accumulated a required number of Continuing Education Units. There is an increasing awareness of the necessity and benefits of having a prepared photographic and written record of one’s personal property. This knowledge and the ever-increasing busy lifestyles of homeowners and business owners alike create a growing demand for a professional inventory service provider.

 

Rachel is adding inventory services to her current organizing company. She explained, “I started iORGANIZE about a year ago and realized the synergy these two services create. Being able to provide both organizing and inventory services to my clients is an exciting expansion of my business .It also provides an opportunity for me to educate people about the benefits of a prepared inventory.

 

Achieving certification is not required for the contents inventory professional. By choosing to invest in  continuing education, Lyddy stated, ”I wanted to receive knowledge about the Inventory industry and receive support from NICA. A certification will also reassure my clients that I have the necessary training to conduct inventories.

 

Cindy Hartman, Managing Director of NICA, said, “Rachel is a full-time educator, so the flexibility of her business is extremely important. Both the organizing and inventory services allow her to pursue both of her career choices. We are pleased to welcome her as a Certified Member, and know that she will serve her clients well.”  

 

Based in Many, Louisiana, iORGANIZE provides this line of services to residential and commercial clients within an approximate 100 mile radius.