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What is an appraisal?

St Louis Jewelry Appraisals

A jewelry appraisal is a written statement by a qualified, impartial appraiser describing the unique and distinctive characteristics of your jewelry and defining the value of the piece on a specific date. The appraiser arrives at this value by determining the condition of the jewelry, the quality of its construction and the quality of the materials used.

An appraisal is often used to establish a replacement value for insurance purposes. Therefore, an accurate and up-to-date appraisal is the best way to assure your property is protected for its full value.

An appraisal can also be used to settle an estate or a divorce or to verify an item's fair market value for donation purposes.

St Louis Jewelry Appraisals

An appraisal of jewelry requires a judgment of workmanship and an estimate of value. The end result is subjective and must be conducted by an appraiser who has the knowledge, experience and the necessary laboratory equipment to achieve the most accurate and unbiased outcome.

An appraisal has three basic purposes:

  • Your appraiser must determine the quality of workmanship involved in the construction of the piece, the material from which your jewelry is made, the condition of the jewelry at the time of the appraisal and must describe any distinctive physical characteristics affecting value.
  • The appraiser must define the value of your jewelry in comparison to other similar property.
  • The appraiser is also a witness to your property. The appraiser can attest in a court of law that the jewelry existed at a certain point in time and was in a certain condition at that time.

Because of the fluctuating price of materials (gold, diamonds, etc.) an appraisal needs to be updated every few years to maintain the current market value.

Your appraiser must also consider how best to replace your jewelry in the event of loss. There are three basic methods of replacement:

1. The most common method assumes that the item being appraised cannot be substituted new with an exact duplicate. Therefore the cost necessary to replace the item is for comparable items of like kind and quality.

2. The appraiser may determine that your item may be replaced with new items of like kind, quality and utility and that an exact substitute can be found. Therefore the replacement cost has been calculated for items which are still being manufactured and are still available on the open market.

3. When determined that yours is a unique item that cannot be purchased new within a reasonable amount of time and which is capable of being reproduced, your lost item may be best replaced by an exact duplicate, using the same materials and construction methods as the original and made by a qualified craftsman.


Appraisal Fees & Pricing