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Free Appraisal?

stanelz84

Rough_Rock
Joined
Mar 22, 2015
Messages
6
Am inquiring details on an engagement ring appraisal. I have read that some appraisers have a flat fee, some charge based on the quality/size of the ring. I have also heard from family/friends that they have had their rings appraised for free, from the jewelers they bought the product from. Is a free appraisal too good to be true? Is there typically a mark-up in the price of the ring because of this?

For insurance purposes, do I go forward in getting a "replacement cost appraisal" or a "full cost appraisal"?
Do I also need to look for someone who has a Graduate Gemologist diploma and and specialized appraisal training?

I am getting recommendations and advise from all corners. Any insight in this process would be very helpful. Thank you in advance!!
 

Dancing Fire

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Apr 3, 2004
Messages
33,852
stanelz84|1446507837|3944933 said:
Am inquiring details on an engagement ring appraisal. I have read that some appraisers have a flat fee, some charge based on the quality/size of the ring. I have also heard from family/friends that they have had their rings appraised for free, from the jewelers they bought the product from. Is a free appraisal too good to be true? Is there typically a mark-up in the price of the ring because of this?
Good to use for toilet tissue!
 

denverappraiser

Ideal_Rock
Trade
Joined
Jul 21, 2004
Messages
9,147
I depends on what your objective is. It’s true that it’s usually fairly easy to find someone who will give you an opinion for free. I must admit I always get a chuckle when people tell me that an item is ‘worth’ twice as much as what they just paid for it and then back it up with a statement written by the person who just sold it. Really? What have you learned from this?

That said, the usual reasons to get new items independently appraised fall into a few basic categories.

1) Independent verification that what the seller told you is true, that what you received is what you expected and that no important details were omitted.

2) Expert quality control on details ranging from the condition of the mounting and stone(s), matching the lab graded stones to the lab docs, grading on the other stones and metals, and craftsmanship of the setting and manufacturing job. It’s a lot easier to deal with problems sooner rather than later.

3) Paperwork for use if the item ever needs to be replaced that includes the weights, counts, sizes, grades, manufacturers and whatever details will be necessary to replace the item with another of ‘like kind and quality’. The description and photographs in the appraisal will become the purchase order for replacement in the case of a loss.

It’s entirely possible that you neither want nor need any of these things, and it’s entirely possible that the seller is delivering some or all of it. Writing a good appraisal isn’t rocket science but it is a bit of a chore and it does take a bit of practice and a few tools to get good at it. Obviously I’m a biased observer and I’m a big fan of independent appraisals but I must say that most people don’t do their best work for free and the standards set by the majority of customers are extremely low.
 

kenny

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Apr 30, 2005
Messages
33,154
stanelz84|1446507837|3944933 said:
Am inquiring details on an engagement ring appraisal. I have read that some appraisers have a flat fee, some charge based on the quality/size of the ring. I have also heard from family/friends that they have had their rings appraised for free, from the jewelers they bought the product from. Is a free appraisal too good to be true? Is there typically a mark-up in the price of the ring because of this?

For insurance purposes, do I go forward in getting a "replacement cost appraisal" or a "full cost appraisal"?
Do I also need to look for someone who has a Graduate Gemologist diploma and and specialized appraisal training?

I am getting recommendations and advise from all corners. Any insight in this process would be very helpful. Thank you in advance!!

No such thing as free.
When the seller pays for an appraisal the BUYER ultimately pays ... since all of the sellers costs must be folded into the price charged.
I'd MUCH rather get no bogus appraisal telling me the diamond I just bought is worth 40% more than I jus paid :roll: and just pay $42.45 less for the frickin diamond.

Any "Appraisal" that 'comes with' a diamond is not worth the paper it's printed on.
Why?
Conflict of interest.
If 'appraiser' X tells seller diamond is only worth 32% more than sale price seller will find another 'appraiser'.

IMNSHO the REAL "appraisal" you get with a purchase is the price they print on the receipt! :whistle:
 

Rockdiamond

Ideal_Rock
Trade
Joined
Jan 7, 2009
Messages
9,703
Kenny put it well- nothing is free.
It's likely a bargain basement low rent seller will not offer an appraisal nearly as detailed as the higher end sellers offering more service- many buyers find value in a seller offering finer product/service at a premium. I believe consumers of higher line stuff expect this. I don't think any of the finer internet sellers are charging for appraisals on higher end items.

I disagree with the sentiment that a sellers appraisal is not worth the paper it's printed on without exception.
I do agree that using "Appraised Value" as part of a sales pitch is generally a deceptive manner of representation. Furthermore, any seller charging for a jewelry or diamond appraisal is charging people for things they should be providing for free in my opinion.
That does not invalidate well written, accurate appraisals provided by sellers.

A detailed bill of sale contains much of the information necessary for an insurance appraisal. Such a document will fulfill the item #3 in Neil's excellent post above. Again, seller provided images and measurements will be extremely useful in the event replacement is called for.

Insurance companies will accept detailed appraisals written by sellers. As well as a detailed bill of sale. As well as photos/Videos/Reflector imagery etc...and also replacement values. Insurance companies must use sellers to determine replacement values. The better jewelry insurance companies work with the better sellers to satisfy replacement claims.

stanelz84- my advice is to research the seller thoroughly before purchase. You may not feel an appraisal is automatically worth the cost if you are comfortable with the seller. Not to say that any seller is above making an error
If you are going to get an appraisal, you need to do as much research on the appraiser. Performing Neil's tasks #1 and 2 requires you select someone with very strong qualifications. Unfortunately, showing items to other jewelry sellers might not get you an impartial evaluation. Should you decide you need one, make sure to find an independent appraiser. Vet them here on PS.
 

WinkHPD

Ideal_Rock
Trade
Joined
May 3, 2001
Messages
7,516
Rockdiamond|1446516538|3944983 said:
Kenny put it well- nothing is free.
It's likely a bargain basement low rent seller will not offer an appraisal nearly as detailed as the higher end sellers offering more service- many buyers find value in a seller offering finer product/service at a premium. I believe consumers of higher line stuff expect this. I don't think any of the finer internet sellers are charging for appraisals on higher end items.

I disagree with the sentiment that a sellers appraisal is not worth the paper it's printed on without exception.
I do agree that using "Appraised Value" as part of a sales pitch is generally a deceptive manner of representation. Furthermore, any seller charging for a jewelry or diamond appraisal is charging people for things they should be providing for free in my opinion.
That does not invalidate well written, accurate appraisals provided by sellers.

A detailed bill of sale contains much of the information necessary for an insurance appraisal. Such a document will fulfill the item #3 in Neil's excellent post above. Again, seller provided images and measurements will be extremely useful in the event replacement is called for.

Insurance companies will accept detailed appraisals written by sellers. As well as a detailed bill of sale. As well as photos/Videos/Reflector imagery etc...and also replacement values. Insurance companies must use sellers to determine replacement values. The better jewelry insurance companies work with the better sellers to satisfy replacement claims.

stanelz84- my advice is to research the seller thoroughly before purchase. You may not feel an appraisal is automatically worth the cost if you are comfortable with the seller. Not to say that any seller is above making an error
If you are going to get an appraisal, you need to do as much research on the appraiser. Performing Neil's tasks #1 and 2 requires you select someone with very strong qualifications. Unfortunately, showing items to other jewelry sellers might not get you an impartial evaluation. Should you decide you need one, make sure to find an independent appraiser. Vet them here on PS.

Holy Moly, I find myself amazed at how much I am agreeing with Rockdiamond here. We seem to specialize in disagreeing with each other on the board, so I am not sure how he did this to me...

(Said with good humor in case anyone is not sure!)

I am one of those vendors who gives a free "Document for Insurance Purposes" often called an appraisal. It contains a reference to the AGS document, including the report number, and the measurements provided by that report are given within the body of the appraisal. The color and clarity and if a branded diamond, the brand of that diamond is also disclosed within the body of the appraisal. It contains a description of the mounting, including the style number and manufacturer of the mounting as well as top and side photographs of the mounting. I have been issuing these documents for forty years now and sadly, I have had to make replacement pieces for more of them than I would like due to loss, theft, or damage.

Never once has any insurance company balked at the quality of the appraisal and more than one adjuster has told me what a pleasure it is to deal with a document that provides all that is needed to properly replace the item.

Fewer than five percent of my clients ask for an independent appraisal, and the vast majority of those go to DenverAppraiser, who can tell you how few of them he has done for me over the years. I am never even remotely offended when someone asks, as I think it somewhat strange that more do not.

Oh, and I never use the appraisal as a sales tool and most of them are very close to the amount for which the item was sold for. If there is a significant difference, the reason why will be in the limiting conditions and fully disclosed so that there is never any attempt to obscure all of the relevant facts from the insuring company.

So, all of this is just a lead up to the fact that I take umbrage at having it categorically stated that my documents are not worth the paper they are written on. But then, I like both Kenny and Dancing Fire, who I am pretty sure were not talking about me when they made their comments.

I think it all comes down to this. Is the reputable jeweler doing a professional quality appraisal that the insurance companies will be happy with, or is the jeweler not as reputable as he seems and doing some puffery like the ridicules values included with some of the second and third tier laboratory reports?

Wink
 

Rockdiamond

Ideal_Rock
Trade
Joined
Jan 7, 2009
Messages
9,703
HERE HERE Winky!!

I think it's high time people remember that it's possible to hold different beliefs- even radiaclly different ones- and still have respect and affection for each other.
( and you're still a wacko :whistle: )
 

Diamond_Hawk

Brilliant_Rock
Trade
Joined
Apr 8, 2014
Messages
1,229
Rockdiamond|1446591573|3945320 said:
HERE HERE Winky!!

I think it's high time people remember that it's possible to hold different beliefs- even radiaclly different ones- and still have respect and affection for each other.
( and you're still a wacko :whistle: )


(snicker) He said "Winky".... Isn't that the 'name' of this Smilie --> ;-) or this one----> ;)) hmmm, this is called Wink2 ----> :wink2:

I'm just trying to figure out which one looks most like you?!
 
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