Whether you’re clearing out a relative’s estate, looking for some extra cash or verifying your home insurance coverage, a professional appraiser is a great place to start when you’re trying to value your possessions. Ask for recommendations from antiques stores, your insurance agent, or even your local history museum.
A few things to keep in mind:
- Reputable appraisers may charge by the hour or by item. Be sure to find out how the appraiser will charge before proceeding.
- Get the appraisal in writing.
- Never sell your item to the person appraising it. The appraiser’s money is on the table, so he or she has a vested interest in low-balling its worth.
- Never use an appraiser whose fee is based on a percentage of the item’s worth. Again, this is a conflict of interest that won’t work out in your favor.