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The Four Types of Jewelry Appraisals

The Four Types of Jewelry Appraisals

Everyone has an idea of what their cherished pieces of jewelry cost or what we think they are worth, right? We may know the price of an engagement ring or the insured value of a brooch, but are these numbers accurate?

Many customers visit jewelry stores looking for information on appraisals. There's difficulty understanding different types of jewelry appraisals. Hence, the reason why it's tricky to explain the cost or value of a piece of jewelry.

Since most customers don’t know what they actually need to ask, we offer consistent information and explain the different types of jewelry appraisals.


Understanding Costs of Appraisal

A jewelry appraisal isn’t free, but the price depends on the reason for the appraisal. Our article on How much jewelry appraisal costs? is an ideal guide concerning price.

Aside from price, one must know why the appraisal is necessary.

Are you trying to get a strand of cultured pearls insured? Did you find a diamond ring while scuba diving? Is it time to divide the estate of a deceased relative? These reasons affect how appraisals occur. Here are four common examples of appraisal needs.


Insurance Appraisals

 This rigorous appraisal evaluates an item comprehensively. A jeweler examines the item, determines its components, inspects and evaluates gems, diamonds, pearls, or other stones, and provides a formal appraisal document explaining the findings.

If the jewelry maintains coverage an appraisal from a qualified jeweler is a requirement. More insurance information is available in the article, How do I insure my jewelry?

Bring in any previous appraisals (if you had any), receipts, or gem lab grading reports on the jewelry. Jewelers require less time on the appraisal if in possession of this information before conducting the appraisal.

Most appraisals for one item start at $125. Jewelry usually needs to stay with the jeweler. The best practice is to stop by in the morning and pick up the item later in the day. Sometimes, more than one day allows for a thorough appraisal. Once the appraisal finishes, expect delivery of the results within a week. If uncomfortable leaving the item, the best practice is to make an appointment for an appraisal.

The value given in an insurance appraisal is considered a replacement value. This value is the cost to buy the item new if it were lost or stolen, hence, replacement value.


Asset Appraisal for Legal Purposes

This appraisal method determines the value of an item for legal reasons. This appraisal puts a specific dollar value on the jewelry due to its declaration as an asset. Once valuation gets established, further legal action on the asset occurs.

While this is done in the same manner as if you were getting an item insured, your quoted number will most likely differ here. The amount placed on jewelry in this type of appraisal is the price you would ask if you were selling your item to a third party, such as if you decided to sell your item on eBay.


Purchase Offer Appraisal

This type of appraisal is when a jeweler determines what they would pay the customer for the piece of jewelry. If interested in selling jewelry, use this appraisal to determine fair market value.

Depending on the item, it's possible to receive an offer to buy immediately. Our stores provide an instant offer 90% of the time. The only cases where there's no offer are due to being busy, the jeweler not present, complexity, or extremely high valuation. If this is the case, leave the item with the store to obtain proper offers to buy.


Verbal Value Appraisal

This appraisal is a fast general estimate of the value of an item. Generally, these appraisals determine if an item is a genuine piece of jewelry. This appraisal doesn't qualify for insurance, estate reasons, or purchase offers. 

Often it's possible to let the customer know if the item has value. Depending on the type of item and required time for the appraisal, customers may leave the item or wait for a period of time.

People often request a verbal appraisal when they inherit a piece of jewelry, find something, or buy from an untrustworthy jeweler. Most people ask for verbal value to confirm the authenticity of the purchase.


Last Word on Jewelry Appraisals

When arriving at one of our jewelry stores in New Jersey, make sure you are upfront with why the item must be appraised. Don’t spend $125 for a thorough appraisal if trying to confirm the jewelry is a real item.

Communication is key. Let the jeweler know what's being appraised, provide any information, and learn the cost.

To learn more about appraisals, visit either New Jersey jewelry store locations in Morristown or New Providence to see for yourself and talk to any of our expert jewelers. To talk to someone directly about jewelry appraisals, contact us anytime by emailing, or filling out our Contact Form. We’ll answer your questions quickly, honestly and accurately.

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