What’s The Difference Between Antique Valuation & Antique Appraisal?

Antique valuations and antique appraisals are used for different reasons  and can vary in value and price depending on who you talk to. Below you will find some of the main differences between the two.

Where Do You Turn To?

You’ve watched PBS’s “Antique Roadshow” for years and think you have a pretty good sense when it comes to guessing how much something is worth. If you actually own a few antiques and are wondering if they’re as valuable as you hope, it might not be a good idea to guess the price. So now what? Where do you turn? And do you need an antique valuation or an antique appraisal?

Contact An Ethical Appraiser

The first step in finding out the actual value of your piece is to contact an appraiser. Ask friends, co-workers, or others who have already gotten something appraised since referrals can usually be trusted. Read on-line reviews and see what other customers have to say. Stop in at antique shops or auction houses – they may be able to give you some people to contact or can appraise it themselves.

What Is An Antique Appraisal?

An antique appraisal is a legal document that is used most often when a piece may have a high value, is rare or needs to be insured. For example, a coin collection, jewelry, art work, or an antique car. An appraisal can be used for taxes and/or insurance purposes, or in estate planning and wills. Because these types of appraisals take time to research, they cost more. Appraisers can charge an average of $250 an hour.

What Is An Antique Valuation?

If you have an antique that you would like to sell then an antique valuation is all you need. You’ll receive an estimate to give you a general idea of your item’s worth. Sometimes you will get this estimate in writing, but many times its done as a simple verbal assessment.


Any time you have a piece that may be valuable, it’s important to have an idea of its replacement cost. Take it to have a valuation first, then decide whether or not you need a more formal appraisal. Some insurance companies will cover an item with just your verbal valuation; others need a legal appraisal. Some companies will just add it onto your homeowner’s insurance policy; some will require a separate rider. However, the more rare and valuable your antique is, the more crucial it is to have it appraised and insured. Insurance is needed just in case something happens – exactly as you insure your car or home. Don’t guess – call your insurance company, get an appraiser, and have your antiques valued today.

If you find yourself with antiques that you simply can’t use, give us a call or email at Showplace Estate Buyers and Downsizing NYC. We can discuss the pieces you want to relinquish and how much they might be worth.

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