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How Much Should a Jewelry Appraisal for Insurance Cost?

on Oct 13, 2016 11:31 AM

Jeweler appraising a diamond

First things first.

There should be no difference between a "jewelry appraisal for insurance" and any other type of jewelry appraisal.

All too often, jewelers hear, "I don't want to pay a lot for an appraisal. I only need it to get my jewelry insured."

Shelling out your hard-earned cash for something intangible, that you will hopefully never use, is never fun. However, there is no point in paying for your insurance if it will leave you hanging when you actually need it - all because you didn't want to pay more than the minimum to get an accurate, thorough appraisal.

The Importance of Jewelry Appraisals for Insurance

Any time you insure something, you need proof of the item's value and characteristics in order to replace it, whether with a same kind and quality equivalent or cash.

In the case of jewelry, if you have an inaccurate appraisal, you may not recover enough funds from an insurance claim to actually replace your piece at fair market prices.

If you have an incomplete appraisal, what you know to be your cherished jewelry may not be how the insurer interprets the brief description of your piece.

Either way, you can wind up without an equal replacement for the jewelry you've been paying premiums to insure year after year. Kind of defeats the purpose, right?

Typical Jewelry Appraisal Costs

Now that you understand the importance of an accurate, thorough appraisal, let's discuss the fees associated with such.

Start with the structure of the fee. Appraisal fees should never be based on a percentage of the jewelry's value. This is an ethical violation since the appraiser will make more money by valuing a piece higher, leaving incentive to over-inflate. Appraisal services should always be charged by the hour or a flat fee per piece.

Hourly rates typically range from $50 to $150, depending on the complexity of the jewelry. A simple wedding band will always cost less than a three-stone engagement ring; there's simply more to appraise with the latter.

A thorough appraisal will include:

  • laboratory work to inspect and gather facts about the piece
  • market research to compare like pieces
  • writing of the appraisal

The most important factor when seeking an accurate, reputable appraisal is the credentials of the appraiser. Check American Gem Society, the National Association of Jewelry Appraisers or Gemological Institute of America for a list of qualified appraisers.Get a Quote

 

Comments

I have a set of stud solitaire earrings. I want to confirm the amount I paid for them.

Marsha Robert

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)

Hi Marsha - You'll have to get in touch with the jeweler who sold you your earrings. Thanks for reading and good luck!

Chelsea Drusch

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)

Hi Marsha, I am a Certified Gemologist in Plano. I have been in the jewelry industry for 30 years and a Gemologist for 15 years. Please call me with any questions you may have regarding your new solitaire earring purchase

Manny Bharwani

Can you recommend any body in the Katy area?

charles harris

I have an old engagement ring w/o the appraisal certificate. It was a xmas/engagement ring. I do not know the actual value of the ring. If I get it appraised, how would I know if its an accurate $ estimate? I not not have the receipt or the old certificate of appraisal.
Thanks,
Sio

Sio

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)

Hi Sio - The old value shouldn't matter much since jewelry markets change often. As long as you go to a certified appraiser, your appraisal should be accurate and reliable.

Chelsea Drusch

I'm seeing an appraiser who was well-reviewed on the web, but charges $250/hour. I want an accurate and thorough appraisal (not that I know I will necessarily get one) but this seems really high. Am I being overcharged?

Leigh

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)

Hi Leigh - Your best bet it to get additional quotes locally in order to compare. Prices can depend on your market. Good luck!

Chelsea Drusch

I have a. .82 trillion cut tanzanite...surrounded by diamonds set in 18k thinkink of selling dont want to get ripped off..appraisals??

Leslie Duncan

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