People are just as likely to underestimate the value of their property as they are to overestimate it. If you plan to liquidate or form an estate plan, an estate appraisal in Maryland prevents you from making mistakes in either direction. Our appraisers can reveal the hidden value in items that you never expected to be worth anything. Here are five reasons why hiring an appraiser is a better option than attempting to valuate items yourself:
- Assure even distribution: Many clients need estimates for estate planning purposes because they want to assure they distribute their assets evenly. This is especially true with children. Even when they become adults, old sibling rivalries may result in will contests that are costly for all involved. If you can document the value of items to show you truly divided your property equally, that makes will contests and estate litigation less likely.
- Determine investment value: If you search around the Internet, you may find possible sales prices on eBay and other used good markets. This does not tell you if your item is irreplaceable or will increase or decrease in value. It also does not tell you if the market is soft or about to become hot. Just because something is old does not necessarily mean it is valuable—or in demand. Only an appraisal can confirm these elements.
- Benefit from expertise: The Internet seems like an endless font of information, with Google knowing all the answers. But when it comes to antiques, art and even automobiles, you cannot find all the information you need from an online search. There may be one individual who sells a similar item for an inflated price, or standards of proving value that are not listed publicly online. An appraiser knows what to look for when valuing these items, and that assures a complete value estimate rather than one based entirely on uninformed guesses.
- Find the unseen riches: A coin collection may seem ratty and old, but sometimes, there are treasures found in these unexpected places. It is also possible that what you assumed was cheap costume jewelry was actually created by Tiffany & Co. in the Gilded Age. Sometimes, the need to liquidate or downsize takes over thoughtful decision making. Rather than make assumptions about the property, bring in an appraiser. You may be pleasantly surprised by the value of seemingly worthless objects!
- Make good decisions: It is expected that you or your family members may wish to keep items with sentimental value—or the temptation to drop off everything at the local thrift shop may be more tempting. However, it is best to make these decisions in an informed manner, even with property that seems mundane. For example, mid-century Fiestaware still holds value. But if it does not fall into the taste spectrum of your family members, it may be better to liquidate it now for cash rather than risk it being dumped in a donation bin. On the other hand, if your Fiestaware was manufactured in the 1980s instead of the 1950s, you will feel better about donating it knowing that its value is not high.
To start your estate appraisal in Maryland, call Jane Campbell-Chambliss & Associates, LLC today.