Having a family heirloom or a cherished find from an antique shop appraised can be quite the thrill! Not knowing if you’ve been sitting on something worth far more than you suspected is a pleasant surprise for anyone, and finally figuring out the real value of what you’re holding onto means understanding what it is, where it came from, why it’s valuable and what potential there is moving forward.
But an appraisal can also bring about more questions than answers. If you hand something over to an appraisal service in Maryland and they tell you something completely the opposite of what you suspected, you’re going to want more information! Heck, even heading into an appraisal for the first time can bring about a slew of questions that you probably don’t otherwise have the answer to.
Let’s take a look at some common questions and some of the answers you’re likely to get when you make a trip to an appraisal service in Maryland:
Will the appraisal service buy my item if it’s found to be valuable?
The answer to this question is generally no. Reputable appraisal services are not in the business of buying the items they appraise, no matter how tempting. The reason? It can create a conflict of interest between the actual value and the appraised estimate, which is a breach of ethics.
How do I show others that my item has been appraised and is worth $X?
After your appraisal you’ll receive an appraisal report, which is a document that explains your item was appraised by an accredited professional and what its value was estimated to be. Keep in mind that this is far from a perfect document—it’s merely something that explains you’ve had your item truly inspected by a professional. It will also contain the specifications of the item, the characteristics, the standards it was held to and the credentials of the appraiser.
How long will it take to appraise my item?
It depends! If you’ve got something intricate and rare, the examination could take a while; if you’ve got something common, yet still valuable, it might only take minutes to discern the value.
Why is my appraiser asking me questions about my item?
People get nervous when appraisers ask questions because they think it means the appraiser is guessing about the value! This is far from the truth, however—they’re merely learning more about its background through what you can tell them. Even little details can yield information about the origin of a piece, so it pays to ask questions to get a refined idea of the value.
How long is an appraisal good for?
Items depreciate or appreciate in value with each passing day, so it’s hard to put a timeline on an appraisal’s validity. Generally, barring any catastrophic change in condition for the item, you’ve got about 2-3 years or so. Keep in mind, depending on the nature of the item, that could easily change to months or even weeks!
It’s always important to ask questions when you’re working with an appraisal service in Maryland. Open dialog will help you feel better and more confident about the experience and will help your appraiser get a better idea of the value of the item you’re bringing in. With any luck, you’ll work together to find out that your simple item is actually a rare find!