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Office of Planning, Environment, & Realty (HEP)

Real Estate Training Needs Analysis

Chapter 1 - In-Depth Interviews Among Federal Agencies Involved with the Uniform Relocation Assistance and Real Prop

In Their Own Words...

Table 1:
Summary of Key Issues


Real Estate
Training Approach

Priority Training Areas

Training Resources

Perceptions of FHWA Training

Interest in Training Academy

Army Corps of Engineers

Training is a priority; we operate a training center in Huntsville, AL.

Appraisal, Relocation Assistance & Acquisition. (Also Leasing and Disposal but these areas are not covered under the Uniform Act).

In-house training facility, General Services Administration (GSA), International Right-of-Way Association (IRWA), Appraisal Institute (AI), & The American Society of Appraisers (ASA).

One previous attendee found FHWA courses helpful while anotherexpressed concern that courses may be too highway specific.

Interested in looking for low-cost training options and working with other agencies. It is important that efforts be collaborative, especially when agencies have existing training resources and centers.

Bureau of Land Management

Shares National Training Center in Phoenix, Arizona.

Acquisition (large tracts) & Appraisal.

Internal Training, IRWA, AI, & American Society of Farm Managers and Rural Appraisers (ASFMRA).

Too much of a highway slant. Not perceived to be particularly relevant to their needs.

Nice idea that if done well could be helpful. Collaboration is where we get our strength. It could compete with existing resources.

Bureau of Reclamation

No formal protocols. Depends on outside providers.

Property Management, Acquisition, and Recreational Management.


Not strong in the content areas BLM needs.

High interest if built west of the Mississippi.

Department of Agriculture

Low priority. More and more outsourced.

Property Management, Renovation, Relocation, & Disposal. (Leasing is a priority but it is not covered under the Uniform Act).

In-house, MCI, & some FHWA.

Only aware of relocation courses.


Department of Energy

Very decentralized. No in-house training.

Disposal, Remediation, & Out-Granting.

GSA & Army Corps of Engineers.

Not relevant to agency's needs.

High interest.

Department of the Interior

Conducts in-house program.

Acquisition & Disposal of Contaminated Properties.

In-house and outside vendors.

Too generic for agency's needs.

A good idea.

Environmental Protection Agency

Depend largely on others.

Appraisal & Relocation.


No Information provided.


Farm Credit Administration

Organized training protocols. Multi-year training program.


Appraisal Institute, in-house, & farm associations.

Not relevant to agency's needs.

Low interest.

Federal Aviation Administration

Low priority. In-house training is provided. For the FAA Airport programs, about 95% of the work is undertaken by consultants who are selected and paid based on qualifications and competence to meet Uniform Act requirements.

Appraisal & Relocation.

FAA provides training courses on Appraisal Methods, Land Titles, & Fundamental Relocation Obligations and participates in FHWA and IRWA courses for more in-depth training.

Perceive FHWA training as an in-depth training option, but funding for travel and tuition is limited.

No interest.

Federal Emergency Management Agency

Low priority. Operate their own training facility.

Acquisition & Relocation.

No information provided.

Not relevant to agency's needs. (Too Uniform Act-based.)

Nice idea, but doubtful it will meet agency's needs.

Federal Transit Administration

Depend on our consultants to be well trained, supported with oversight of an FTA Real Estate Specialist.

Appraisal & Relocation.

FTA currently has no Uniform Act training sources. During FY 2001 and 2002 the National Transit Institute will develop a training tool, probably a CD.

From experience, felt FHWA's NHI courses were excellent, with the greatest strength being the teachers and their understanding of the subject matter and the singular weakness being the teachers' assumption that all Federal programs are like FHWA.

Very receptive to sharing resources and training approaches among Federal agencies.

Fish & Wildlife

Formal protocols. Have own national training center.

Relocation, Appraisal, Surveys, & Real Estate Law.

In-house, IRWA, & AI.

Although FHWA courses are relevant when it comes to understanding the fundamental acquisition concepts, any course content that focuses specifically on highway issues is not particularly relevant to their needs.

Good idea, but would compete with existing internal facility.

Forest Service

Very sophisticated program coordinated by George Mason University.

Acquisition, Property Management, & Relocation. (Leasing is a priority but it is not covered under the Uniform Act).

Bureau of Land Management.

No need. Not relevant to agency's needs.

Nice idea, but not needed.

General Services Administration

Started Center of Expertise to provide hands-on support, which evolved into an advisory source for regional training needs. Currently assessing existing sources, identifying core competencies through research study, and planning to develop individualized training plans using a Skills Assessment Tool.

Relocation (basic relocation, business, & residential), Appraisal and Appraisal Review, Title, Reading Plans, Survey, Negotiations/Conflict Resolution Contract Preparations (site acquisitions, not services), Federal Real Estate Contract Law (as it applies to Acquisition), Environment, Site Investigation, Project Management.

Currently developing training resources. Interested in collaborating with other agencies.

Suggested identifying courses that could provide general information for other agencies and noting courses that have a strong highway focus.

  • Provided a variety of suggestions for collaboration, including:

  • Identify/develop general courses at the Federal level that all agencies could use

  • Develop "base line course

  • Develop a course catalog with clear objectives that describe the course content

  • Interested in meeting with other Federal agencies on a routine basis to share resources and ideas

  • Provide opportunity for agencies to collaborate and still maintain their autonomy

  • Encourage all efforts be conducted by a Federal Interagency Task Force

  • Interested in sharing course catalogs, web site listings of courses, guidebooks, & online training resources

Housing & Urban Development

Training necessary for some titles, but generally not a big thing.

Repair, Relocation, Property Management, Rehabilitation, & Demolition.

In-house with consultant overview.

Not perceived to be relevant. Too much emphasis on acquisition.

Nice idea, but unsure whether courses would be general enough to apply to all Federal agencies.

National Park Service

Operates decentralized in-house training program and looks to other organizations for training resources.

Appraisal, Acquisition, Relocation, & Property Management.

In-house, Appraisal Institute (AI), farm associations, or other natural resource agencies.

One respondent felt there was a highway slant while another was unfamiliar with FHWA courses.

Modest interest in academy, but very interested in general course on Uniform Act.

Small Business Administration

Not highly formalized.



Not familiar with FHWA training.


U.S. Navy/ Facilities Engineering Command

Formal training protocols.

Acquisition & Disposal.

GSA, MCI, universities, & some FHWA.

Havent needed. May not be relevant to agency's needs.


U.S. Navy/ Real Estate Policy Branch

Formal training protocols.

Appraisal & Acquisition.


Have never considered. Don'St need.

Moderate interest.

U.S. Postal Service

Operate their own training academy & have developed training protocols.

Appraisal, Disposal, Property Management, & Relocation.

No information provided.

Not relevant (USPO not held to Uniform Act practices).

No interest. Competes w/own training facility.

Washington Metro

Highly formal training program, but not strong for real estate.

Acquisition & Basic Real Estate Practices.

IRWA & Urban League.

No knowledge of FHWA training.

High interest.

< < < Back to In-Depth Interviews > > >

Analysis Table of Contents | Acknowledgments | Letter from the Directors | Chapter 1 | Chapter 2 | Chapter 3 | Appendix

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Updated: 9/5/2014
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