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Appraisal Considerations
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When to Get an Appraisal? Points to Consider About Items Being Appraised

The value of an item being appraised will be affected by various factors. The most important are:


The rarity of an item usually affects its value. Rarity may be determined by how many of a particular item were produced or how many of the items are readily available in today’s market. Some items which were, in the past, easy to locate, may become valuable if the demand for these items becomes high.


As with rarity, desirability can add value to an item. The supply/demand factor is at work when collectors drive up the price of merchandise due to its popularity


This is perhaps the single-most important factor in determining the value of an item. No matter how rare or commonplace the item, its condition can dramatically affect its potential value. Most antiques and collectibles, by virtue of their age, have flaws, cracks, chips, wear, discoloration, and other damage. Of course, the closer the item is to its original condition, the better. Mint or near-mint condition items yield higher prices than those that are damaged. Also important is that all parts of the item are present. For instance, a collectable toy is much more valuable with its original packaging. Additionally, there should be no missing parts – bottles should have their original stoppers; teapots should have their tops; jewelry should not be missing stones. Repairs, if they have been made, should make the damage or break barely noticeable.

Manufacturer’s or Designer’s Markings:

Items that bear a maker’s mark or logo are often more valuable than identical or similar pieces that bear no mark. Value is added to hand-painted or handcrafted pieces if it has the manufacturer’s mark/logo or artist’s signature.

Regional Differences:

The value of an item in one part of the United States can vary dramatically from its value in another part of the country. The item may be in high demand in one area and not in another, or in plentiful supply one place and scarce another one.


Whether an item is the real McCoy or a fake makes a huge difference in its value. Authentication is important and will often necessitate the services of an expert if the fake (or reproduction) is a good one.

Salvage Value:

Even a very badly damaged antique may have some value as repair experts often use antiques to repair other pieces. Also, some pieces are used by artists and crafters to make other items. Before throwing away a badly damaged piece, it is always better to check to make sure it doesn’t have salvage value.

Current Market Fluctuations:

The value of particular categories of antiques can wax and wane depending upon their popularity at any given time. Current demand will affect the value of an antique which can fluctuate, sometimes widely.

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