What is the Value of my item?
It is not always an easy task to place a value on antiques. In the appraisal business a collectible item or an antique typically has three values. These values are its fair market value, its retail or replacement value, and its insurance value (which could also include replacement value). Our customers and clients often get these values confused and are unfamiliar with the differences between the three terms. That is why our first question often is "Why do you want/need this appraisal? How will it by used?"
Fair Market Value: The value at which an item would change hands on the open market with neither party being forced to buy or sell. At an auction the competitive nature of auction often drives the price of an item much higher than even retail value. That is why the most valuable items are sold at auction it is the best method to realize maximum value for unique and rare items. With more ordinary pieces, auction prices are usually a little lower than the price that would be asked for the item in a retail environment
Retail or Replacement Value: This is of course the value or price an item or object can bring in an antique store or retail environment.
Insurance/Replacement Value: This is the value put on an item so that the owner can replace an object if it is destroyed or stolen. Insurance values tend to be set at the higher end of retail value. This is done so that the insured item can be replaced with enough insurance money to buy an equivalent item at the current price.
One thing to be aware of is that it is not ethical or legal for an appraiser to take a percentage of the value of an item as a fee for doing an appraisal for you. The charge for doing an appraisal includes the amount of time it takes to get to the item (its location) inspect a piece, do research and prepare the written appraisal document. Always choose a qualified appraiser for written appraisals and for all of your appraisal needs. Find an appraiser you trust to value your cherished items. Appraisers may be a generalist and have a wide knowledge of many items or a specialist, who specializes in one area. Keep in mind that an appraisal is one experts opinion as to the value of any object.
We can provide appraisals for all sorts of reasons: Probate, Insurance, Fair Market Value, Seperation, Divorce, Estate Settlement, Liquidation, Business Loans, General Interest and many more. Our fees are based on the services you need. Whatever your needs, contact us today to help you.