What is an Appraisal?

An appraisal is an opinion or statement of the value rendered by a professional appraiser who acts as an independent, impartial third party. Appraisals are often done on personal property and real estate. Personal property appraisals are often done for valuable items like artwork, collectibles or antiquities.

Appraisals should be done by a qualified professional who is an expert in evaluating the type of personal property being appraised. An appraisal, which typically comes in the form of a written report, is assumed to be more reliable to third parties than statements of value made by non professionals, such as collectors, conservators, dealers and museum curators.

When should you have an appraisal done?

Personal property appraisals should be done to establish the value of an item or items in order to secure adequate insurance coverage or to make decisions about the division of property of an estate. It is important that the appraiser understand the reason for the appraisal, as values may differ according to the purpose of the appraisal.

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