"What is it worth? An appraisal is an informed opinion of value within a specific market context for a specific purpose. The intended use of the appraisal will determine the type of value and the approach to value that is applied."
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. To protect 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. It is highly recommended that an insurance appraisal be updated every five (5) years to allow for fluctuations in the relevant marketplaces.
Damage and Loss
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 partial or total loss should be declared.
A donation appraisal is required by the Internal Revenue Service when a gift of one or more like items is valued above $5,000, in addition to a completed IRS Form 8283. A qualified donation appraisal requires exact information, including details of comparable and completed sales in appropriate markets, photographs and market analyses.
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.