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Jewelry Appraisals: What You Need To Know

February 18, 2020

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A jewelry appraisal is a document in which a jewelry professional examines and states the overall quality and value of a piece of jewelry. Brinker’s Jewelers gemologists reference the Gemological Institute of America’s (GIA) grading scale of diamonds and gemstones, as well as the market value of precious metals and manufacturing costs in determining the value of jewelry. With 48 years of experience in the jewelry industry, Brinker’s Jewelers assists our clients in understanding what they need to know about their special pieces and determining their particular appraisal needs.

At Brinker’s Jewelers, we offer four appraisal evaluations: Retail Value, Replacement Value, Estate Value and Cash Value.

  1. A retail value appraisal is used to determine the suggested list price of a new item when it was purchased.
  2. A replacement value appraisal is for clients to know what they can replace their item for in the event of damage, loss, or theft of jewelry with a like item and in similar condition.
  3. An estate value appraisal states what an item may resell for as a pre-owned piece of jewelry in an estate sale or jewelry store. This type of appraisal is normally used for estate planning/inheritance and tax evaluation situations.
  4. A cash value appraisal is used when a client wants to liquidate their item and receive cash or store credit toward a future jewelry purchase.

Every insurance company has different policy requirements for replacement coverage, which include standard homeowner’s coverage or a personal property policy. Check with your insurance agent to learn the features, benefits and costs of coverage and what option is best for you.

The Importance of Appraisals

If you want to get insurance on your jewelry, you must first have it appraised in order to determine the item’s replacement value and your insurance premium. In the event that your jewelry ever gets damaged, lost or stolen, the detailed description in the appraisal can assist in collecting insurance and/or identify the item if it is found.

Watch Appraisals

Appraisals for watches are slightly different than those for jewelry. Watch appraisals look at the watch brand and model number(s), condition, age, rarity, original box, and paperwork, service records, etc., in order to determine the timepiece’s value. Just like jewelry appraisals, watch appraisals can be used to determine the replacement cost if the item is ever damaged, lost or stolen (please see above for the four different appraisal options we offer).

It’s important to have proper documentation of the authenticity of the watch. It may even add value to the piece if it still has the original box/warranty paperwork. Other factors that contribute to the value of your watch are:

  • Brand/Model
  • Authenticity
  • Condition
  • Unique features/Rarity

How to prepare for your next jewelry appraisal:

If you have any official documentation from when the item was originally purchased, you’ll want to bring that to the appointment. This includes receipts, warranties, diamond lab reports, or any previous appraisals.

Write down the history of the piece. Knowledge of the item’s origination may help the appraiser to better assess the item. You may be wondering about age, resale value, or authenticity of your jewelry. Note any questions you have about the items you’re bringing in to make sure that you get the answers you need.

At Brinker’s Jewelers, we appraise gold and silver jewelry, diamonds, watches, gemstones, pearls, gold and silver coins, estate jewelry items, and more. Appraisal prices vary depending on if the item was originally purchased at Brinker’s or another retail establishment. We also offer a price discount if there is more than one item to be appraised. Appraisal prices start at $75 (not purchased at Brinker’s) or they start out at $25 per article for an appraisal update if purchased at Brinker’s. The appraisal process includes:

  • Testing and documentation
  • Gem identification
  • Grading analysis
  • A written value assessment for current retail, estate, or liquidation purposes
  • A photograph of each piece for insurance
  • Inspection and cleaning of each item

To get started or to ask any questions about the appraisal process, visit us in-store or contact us today!