When faced with planning an estate sale after a loved one dies, it is common for individuals not know the value of many of the items left inside a home. To overcome this hurdle, and maximize profits from an estate sale, it is a good idea to hire an appraiser before listing an item. To hire a knowledgeable appraiser, you need to know the guidelines concerning the skills of appraising. Fortunately, some associations certify appraisers, and with the Internet, it is easy to learn more about a particular appraiser before paying for their services.
What Does an Appraiser Charge?
There are specific rules concerning how a professional appraiser can charge their fees, including these methods:
- Flat rates
- Hourly fees
- Per item charge
An appraiser is not permitted to charge a customer a percentage or contingency fee because it is considered an unethical practice.
How is the Appraiser Trained?
The process of appraising antiques and jewelry is specialized, with over 200 specific areas that require extensive training. An appraiser will not have expertise in every type of jewelry, coins or artwork, and that means that you must find an appraiser with the specific knowledge to understand the value of a particular item or one that has connections to someone who does. Appraisers undergo training in a variety of areas with formal education that includes learning about:
- Appraisal Laws
- Appraisal Ethics
- Appraisal Procedures
- Appraisal Principles
- Appraisal Theories
Also, you want to hire an appraiser who has up-to-date knowledge of the latest trends and values. The appraiser should participate in continuing education and have a familiarity with certain types of antiques or jewelry.
About Appraiser Associations
Appraiser associations maintain lists of their members with additional information such as their geographic location and areas of expertise. By contacting one or more professional appraiser organizations, you can find an expert who can examine an antique to determine its value. Associations to contact include:
- American Society of Appraisers
- Appraisers National Association
- Appraisers Association of America
- International Society of Appraisers
- National Association of Appraisers
- National Association of Professional Appraisers
The appraiser you hire to provide a value on estate sale merchandise should belong to one or more national, regional or international professional associations.
Does the Appraiser Have a Professional Resume?
A professional appraiser will inform potential clients about their qualifications by having a professional resume. Today, an expert’s resume is often located online at their website where you can read about their experience, education and find references to contact.
Will the Appraiser Provide a Written Contract?
When you hire a professional appraiser, you should obtain a written agreement that states the charges for examining an item such as antique furniture, artwork or glassware. The contract must list the prices charged for each evaluation to protect you from an unscrupulous appraiser. After the appraisals are completed, you should receive a formal written report about each item to help an estate sale agency sell an item at the appropriate price.
Prestige Estate Services
2201 Kipling Street, Suite 101
Lakewood, CO 80215