What to Know Before You Get a Jewelry Appraisal
Fine jewelry is one of the most important purchases you’ll ever make; it’s an investment. At Vanscoy, Maurer & Bash, we recommend getting your jewelry appraised and insured to protect your purchase. Even if you’ve owned a piece of jewelry for decades, changes in the market mean that you should get an appraisal every three to five years.
Before you get a jewelry appraisal, make sure you understand what it is, where to get one, and other important details.
What is a jewelry appraisal?
An appraisal is more than just a receipt; it is a detailed document of what the jewelry is to determine its monetary value. For example, a diamond ring appraisal will include a description of the ring, gemstone information, and more.
There are a few reasons that people get an appraisal, one of the biggest being for insurance purposes. In most instances, you can’t get your jewelry insured without an appraisal. Appraisals are also important for insurance purposes. You can’t file a claim without one.
Two other common reasons people get jewelry appraisals are to resell or for tax/estate purposes.
How much does it cost to get your jewelry appraised?
Some fine jewelry stores will include an appraisal for free at point of purchase. Otherwise, expect to pay a fee, especially if you didn’t purchase your jewelry from the same store.
Appraisal fees vary, but typically you’ll either pay by the hour or per piece. In terms of cost, Jewelers Mutual says it best. You get what you pay for. If the cost seems too low, it probably is.
How long does it take?
Two factors will affect how long it takes: who and how much. One piece of jewelry will take much less time to appraise than if you have multiple pieces. Expect it to take anywhere from a few days to about a week depending on how many items need to be appraised.
How often do you need to get one?
Don’t assume that an appraisal is a one-time occurrence. As previously mentioned, jewelry values fluctuate. To have the most accurate value, it’s important to get it appraised about every two years.
Additionally, if your appraisal is for insurance purposes, the insurance company may require you to update your appraisal.
Whether you’re newly engaged or want to sell a piece of jewelry, it’s easy to get an appraisal at Vanscoy, Maurer & Bash. Contact us with your questions or schedule an appointment with our gemologist to review your coverage and update your appraisals.