How to Become an

Auto Damage Appraiser

The complete career guide to be an Auto Damage Appraiser: salary, job growth, employers, best schools, and education you may need to get started.

Why We Love It

  • $65,300
    Potential Avg. Salary
  • -0.6%
    Job Growth Rate
  • Deal Making
    Career Attribute
  • Dependable Daily Workload
    Career Attribute

An auto damage appraiser, or insurance adjuster, is an individual that  appraises and assesses and automobiles damage after an accident to determine to cost of repair for insurance claim settlement.  They also prepare insurance forms to indicate repair cost estimates.

Recommended Schools

What is an Auto Damage Appraiser?

The following responsibilities are common for Auto Damage Appraisers:

  • Estimates cost of parts and labor to repair damage to a vehicle
  • Reviews repair-cost estimates to secure an agreement with the repair shop to fix damages
  • Prepares proper insurance claim forms for cost recommendations
  • Examines damaged vehicle to determine the extent of the damage done to the vehicle
  • Has any discrepancies of the damage appraised by an outside appraiser to come to terms with repair costs

A Day In The Life

Auto damage appraisers appraise automobile damage to determine repair cost for an insurance claim settlement.  They will estimate parts and labor to repair the damage to the vehicle.  They come up with these estimates by using the standard automotive parts and labor manuals and their acquired extensive knowledge of automotive repair.  They then review the cost estimates with the automobile shop to secure an agreement and contract for the labor, parts and repairs.  Another important aspect of these individuals job is to examine the damage to the vehicle to determine the structural and interior and exterior body.  They then prepare the insurance forms to indicate the cost estimates for the insurance company.  Another responsibility in this occupation is to evaluate the practicality of a repair and salvage of a vehicle as opposed to determining whether or not the damaged vehicle should be determined as a total-loss vehicle.

Typical Work Schedule

This is a full-time position, typically spent in the office, at mechanical repair shops and traveling for vehicular accide.

Projected Job Growth

This particular occupation is expected to slowly increase over the next few years.

Typical Employers

Insurance companies like State Farm, Geico, Progressive and Dairyland are all great examples of companies that these individuals can work for.  While others choose to work independently as agents for these large corporate insurance companies as well.

Recommended Schools

How To Become an Auto Damage Appraiser

Training options for gunsmiths vary and include online certifications along with career diplomas in gunsmithing.  These individuals are required to have a safe and comprehensive understanding of a variety of firearms.  They should have familiarity with loading mechanisms, gun loading, gun safety, attaching accessories and proper safety inspections.  They would also greatly benefit from being knowledgeable in the history of firearms and the statutes relevant to guns.  All gunsmiths are required by law to possess a Federal Firearms License and must be in compliance of the Federal Firearms Act of 1938.  A license can be obtained thr the Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms bureau.  Certain and specific prerequisites and requirements are needed in order for an individual to obtain this license.

Students are recommended to obtain a certification or associates degree to become a gunsmith.  Coursework should include woodworking, welding, lasers, drafting, physics and ballistics and mathematics.  To achieve the coveted hands-on training also needed a student can also apply for an internship in a firearm shop and learn under the supervision of a seasoned gunsmith.  Gunsmithing appreticeships allow students to work under the guidance and mentorship of an experienced gunsmith.  They have the opportunity to gain hands-on experience while learning from experts of the trade.

Auto Damage Appraiser Salary Data

We’ve provided you the following to learn more about this career. The salary and growth data on this page comes from recently published Bureau of Labor Statistics data while the recommendations and editorial content are based on our research.

National Anual Salary

Low Range




High Range


National Hourly Wage

Low Range




High Range


How do Auto Damage Appraiser salaries stack up to other jobs across the country? Based on the latest jobs data nationwide, Auto Damage Appraiser's can make an average annual salary of $65,300, or $31 per hour. On the lower end, they can make $52,700 or $25 per hour, perhaps when just starting out or based on the state you live in.

Salary Rankings And Facts

  • #227 Nationally for All Careers

  • Above Average Salary Nationally

Highest Education Among Auto Damage Appraisers

  • 1.9%   Doctorate
  • 6.6%   Masters
  • 39.8%   Bachelors
  • 9.5%   Associates
  • 25.1%   College
  • 16.5%   High School
  • 0.6%   Less than High School

Job Growth Projections and Forecast

2014 Total Jobs


2024 Est. Jobs


Job Growth Rate


Est. New Jobs


How does Auto Damage Appraiser job growth stack up to other jobs across the country? By 2024, there will be a change of -100 jobs for a total of 15,400 people employed in the career nationwide. This is a -0.6% change in growth over the next ten years, giving the career a growth rate nationwide of Above Average.

Growth Rankings And Facts

  • #629 Nationally for All Careers

  • Above Avg. Growth Nationally

What Companies Employ The Most Auto Damage Appraisers

Industry Current Jobs New Jobs Needed % Increase
Direct insurance (except life, health, and medical) carriers 10,200 -700 -1%
Other insurance related activities 2,600 600 1%
Insurance agencies and brokerages 400 100 ---

Want To Be an Auto Damage Appraiser? Get Started!

Generate your free SmartPlan™ to identify colleges you like, and potential ways to save on a degree or certification program toward your career with courses, offers, and much more!

Enroll Now and Get Started

or Learn More →