What is an Appraisal?

An appraisal is an informed opinion of value within a specific market context for a specific purpose. 


To protect your valuable items from loss by fire, theft or damage, many insurance policies require fine art, antiques, silver and collectibles to be scheduled separately for complete coverage. We value individual items, collections and residential contents as required and the final report is guaranteed to meet and exceed insurance industry standards. 

It is important to have items of personal property appraised to ensure proper coverage during a move, when upgrading an existing policy or establishing a new one.  It is highly recommended that an insurance appraisal be updated every five (5) years to allow for fluctuations in the marketplace. 

Damage and Loss

A damage appraisal is commonly required by insurance carriers when there is a total or partial loss to property.  A damaged item must be assessed to establish the value in its present condition in order to determine whether restoration or conservation is the appropriate next step or whether a loss should be declared. 

Charitable Donation

A donation appraisal is required by the Internal Revenue Service when a gift of one or more like items is valued at $5,000 and above, in addition to a completed IRS Form 8283.  The IRS stipulates that in order to qualify as a charitable donation for tax purposes, the donated property must be contributed to a qualified non-profit organization. The donated property also must be relevant to the charitable purpose for which the organization was established. 

A qualified  donation appraisal requires exact information, including details of comparable and completed sales in appropriate markets, photographs and market analyses.  The item(s) must be appraised no more than 60 days prior to the date of donation.  Appretium is in compliance with the guidelines set forth by the IRS which define a “qualified appraiser” and “qualified appraisal”. 

Trusts and Estates

An appraisal for trust and estate planning is essential for the Internal Revenue Service filing requirements, probate reporting and equitable distribution among heirs.  An appraisal of personal property assets - including fine and decorative art, antiques and household contents - assists the fiduciaries, executors and advisors in the equitable transfer of property either by sale or by distribution.

Equitable Distribution of Marital Assets

In the event of a divorce or business dissolution, an appraisal is necessary in order to ensure equitable division of property or to ascertain equal shares of a joint asset.