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Jewelry Appraisal: 5 Things to Watch Out For

Published September 29th, 2020 by Annapolis Jewelers

When you own a lot of jewelry, you should always know what it's worth.

An understanding of jewelry appraisal is more complicated than you might think. If you want a clear idea of how much your collection is worth, however, you can't just guess. When it comes time to sell your pieces, you should get as much for them as you possibly can.

Today, we're going to tell you 5 things that you should watch out for when getting jewelry appraised. Whatever the reason for doing the appraisal, it's important that you get it right so that you never leave money on the table.

1. Keep Expectations Low

Getting a piece of jewelry appraised is both exciting and nerve-racking. If it's a piece that you don't know a lot about, the mystery of its value is the most enticing part, which can lead the imagination to run wild. 

One of the best tips we can give you is to keep your expectations low so that you're pleasantly surprised, or at the very least, not too heartbroken by an appraisal. Too many people get their hopes up, wanting to make a fortune on their piece, only to have them crushed by a low appraisal.

2. Learn About Appraisals

Jewelry appraisal is more accurate than it's ever been, but it's still good practice to talk to more than one appraiser. It's also important to understand the different types of jewelry appraisal so that you're getting the right information.

First, there's replacement value appraisal, which tells you how much the piece would be to replace if something happened (theft, loss). Fair market value appraisal tells you what the piece would fetch if you decided to sell it to an interested buyer. Lastly, liquidation appraisal tells you how much you could get if you needed to sell quickly.

3. Bring Documentation

Like with high-end pieces of art, your jewelry might have a provenance that increases its value. Presenting any documentation to the appraiser will help them in giving you a fast and accurate appraisal.

This might include past appraisals, a diamond report, receipts, or warranties. If there are any notable historical details that you can provide - such as past owners and their locations - that will help as well.

4. Understand the Fees

Jewelry appraisers work independently, so there's no fee structure that they must abide by. The fee could be based on expertise, they may work by the hour, or it could be based on the item and the work involved in finding out about it. 

One thing to stay away from is appraisers that attempt to charge you a percentage of the item. 

5. Learn About the Jewelry Appraisal Report

You should walk away from the appraisal with a jewelry appraisal report that you can present to your insurance company or a buyer. Here's what will be included in that:

  • Your name and contact information.
  • The date and purpose of the appraisal with a description and picture of the item.
  • A statement from the appraiser outlining the condition of the piece and any outside help they received in appraising it.
  • The value of the piece.

Once You've Completed Your Jewelry Appraisal...

Getting a jewelry appraisal from someone you trust can help you when it comes to insurance or if you decide to sell your items. Now that you understand the process a little bit better, you can go into this process knowing what to expect and what you deserve.

At Annapolis Jewelers and Precious Metals, we specialize in appraisals and take great pride in educating our customers. Contact us today to book an appraisal and visit our diamond and gemstone education pages to learn more about your jewelry.

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