Heritage Auctions Appraisal Services




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Frequently Asked Questions

Why do I need a formal appraisal?
You need an appraisal from a qualified appraiser because they provide an unbiased analysis of the value of your property so that you can protect your financial well-being and investments. Don't let your heirs throw away seemingly insignificant items because they did not know the items had great value. Don't miss out on a tax deduction for the painting you donated to a local museum. Don't be sorry that you did not insure your engagement ring when it accidentally slipped down the drain. For all of these reasons and many more, a formal appraisal is a necessary part of caring for your beloved collection.

Why is Heritage qualified to appraise my property?
Heritage has assembled the best team of experts in over 30 unique categories of fine art and collectibles who are leaders in their respective fields. From rare coins and vintage comic books to illustration art and fine jewelry, we have experts who can help you determine the value of your collection from the most common piece to the most unique. Contact our Appraisal Services Department for more information specific to your property.

What is the difference between an appraisal and an auction estimate?
An appraisal is a formal written report that requires adherence to USPAP guidelines, IRS dictated regulations, and liability agreements. Appraisals have a specific value for a specific purpose at a specific time — such as a fair market value appraisal for estate tax purposes as of the date of death or a retail replacement value appraisal for insurance purposes as of today's market. Appraisals are a fee-based service, because of the amount of research involved to pinpoint a specific value that will often be used by a third party to establish a basis for insurance, tax, or a loan.

Auction estimates are quick and free opinions of the current market value of items. They are the range of value that one would expect to see the item sell for in today's auction market. This valuation is not intended for any purposes of establishing a value for insurance, tax, estate planning, collateral, or third party transactions. Request a free auction estimate here.

What is USPAP?
USPAP is the acronym for the Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice issued by The Appraisal Foundation every two years. They are the generally accepted standards for professional appraisal practice in North America for all types of appraisal services, including real estate, personal property, business, and mass appraisal.

How often do I need to update my insurance appraisal?
Check with your insurance company first for their guidelines and recommendations for appraisal updates, but generally, we recommend that insurance appraisals be updated every three to five years to keep informed with the most current market valuations.