For Clients who are uncertain about what they have and whether or not it warrants a formal appraisal, we offer studio consults at local frame galleries (facilitating removal of the artwork from the frame, if necessary). While the Client waits, we will examine the work of art, research the artist (or type of art if no signature can be found) in our subscription-only art data bases, and offer an oral opinion of value. The cost of a studio consult is $175 for the first three works of art, and $150 per hour thereafter. If the Client and appraiser determine that a formal appraisal is warranted, $100 will apply towards the cost of a formal appraisal.
We offer site consultations for Clients who have more than a few items which require a triage approach, sorting the artworks into those which should be formally appraised, and those which simply require an inventory listing. This is the usual first step in an estate settlement and/or distribution appraisal, divorce appraisals and insurance appraisals in anticipation of a move, or simply as a precautionary measure. The cost of a site consult within the city limits of Charlotte is $350 for the first hour, and $150 per hour thereafter, for the services of one appraiser. If the Client lives beyond the city limits, the cost is still $350/$150, but there is an additional charge for travel time and mileage. Generally, following a site consult, we return to the office, do some preliminary research and send the Client a proposal outlining which items should be appraised and what the fee would be. A portion of the cost of the site consult applies toward the final cost of the appraisal.
Many Clients are well aware of the caliber of artwork they own and need formal appraisals for adequate insurance coverage (updated every 5 years), non-cash charitable contributions, estate settlement for tax purposes, etc. Because some appraisals may demand far more time and research and potential consultation with the experts on a certain artist, appraisal fees are generally based on a basic fee of $150 per item after the initial fee of $350 for the first item or group of works of art (e.g. several paintings by one artist). The appraiser will notify the client it there are extraneous circumstances and fees which may affect the cost of the appraisal, particularly consultation with The Expert for a particular artist. NB: Appraisers are not authenticators.
Can you remember everything you own? In the event of loss, damage, or -- worst of all -- fire, none of us can remember all the stuff we own: boxed in the attic, hanging in the closet, piled on back shelves, hidden under the bed, neatly placed in drawers -- but out of sight. Instead of trying to recreate a list after the fact, why not develop a list right now. Our team will come to your home and methodically photograph, measure, and describe your possessions, from the great to the small. Our descriptions are based on the Getty ID System which requires more than simply “bed” or “table” or “collection of flatware”. Every verbal description should contain enough information that -- in the event of loss -- a qualified appraiser or insurance adjuster can determine its value with a fair degree of accuracy. Benefits of inventory:You have a record of all of your possessions. We give you a paper report, in addition to two CDs, one for your safe deposit box, and one for your insurance company. If you have receipts for the more valuable items, we can include these in the report, establishing a basis of value. Please note: An inventory is not an appraisal, and we DO NOT provide estimates of value. However, in the process of recording your possessions, our expertise allows us to take note of those possessions which SHOULD be appraised.
Thanks to a site consult, appraisal, or inventory by Art Appraisal Services, LLC, you now know what you have. Now you want to sell. How do you go about that? What is the appropriate market for your treasure? EBay? Craig’s List? Auction? Estate Sale? Private sale? Consignment through a gallery or shop? We will help you define the most appropriate market in which to sell your treasures.
Through our many contacts in the art world, we can advise you on the condition of your art work, which can be a very important factor in its evaluation. Maybe your print requires archival matting and framing, or your oil-on-canvas painting requires cleaning and re-stretching, or that frame needs re-gilding. We are trained to look for these condition issues, and know the experts who can restore your art work to “very good condition”.
Christina V. Whitson, ASA
Accredited Senior Appraiser
American Society of Appraisers
Art Appraisal Services, LLC