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Question about appraisals...

footshooter5

Rough_Rock
Joined
May 2, 2011
Messages
30
Hello all!

I recently received by soon-to-be fiance's engagement ring from Tacori! I'm obviously very excited, but at the same time, it's rather difficult to keep a secret for a couple of months (planning a winter wonderland proposal)

Anyway, I purchased the diamond from a very reputable online vendor and am extremely happy with the stone; I went ahead and purchased a Tacori setting from my local authorized dealer, and had the stone shipped to Tacori to get everything set.

Long story short (although, that's pretty much the whole story), the jeweler whom I bought the setting from (but not the stone), did an insurance appraisal for me. Now I know that technically it's a no-no for you to get an appraisal from the same store you bought your diamond from...but this clearly isn't the case in my scenario.

The question is, should I go ahead and get another appraisal as well, or do you think that this one is sufficient. I have no reason to doubt the validity or credentials of the gentleman (owner of the store) who performed the appraisal for me, but I am always a little on the paranoid side ;-)

Cheers!
 

OCgirl

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Apr 28, 2011
Messages
509
I am not an expert on this subject but I recently got my ring appraised as well.

Before I went to the appraiser (independent) I did my own research. We purchased my ring back in March so diamond price has gone up a lot. I looked at a few online retailers to see what similar stones (color, carat, clarity and cut) are selling at. I gathered about 5 - 10 stones from various online retailers. I then added the cost of the setting (mine is a plain solitaire but I am sure tacori has a set retail value). I came to a range of what I think the appraisal should come out to be. At the end of the day an insurance appraisal is calculating "replacement value." In other words, IF you lose your ring today, will the cost be enough to get you the same exact (okay not EXACT) ring? Some appraisers also add on a 3- or 5- yr inflation adjustment since people don't get re-appraisals every year. My estimate came out to be within 5% of the appraised value (even though it was nowhere near what I paid for since price has gone crazy).

So if you do a quick exercise like the one mentioned above and also come up with a similar value as the appraised value, I personally would feel okay with insuring it at that value. If not, I would probably shell out the $100 or $150 to get another opinion. But keep in mind that an appraisal is highly subjective. I doubt any two appraisals will come out exactly the same on the same piece of jewelry, even if the appraisers are independent.
 

diamondseeker2006

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Jan 11, 2006
Messages
56,283
If you bought a diamond with a grading lab report, then you already have verification of the stone, and you also know the current replacement value for the setting. Now all you need is an insurance valuation so you can get the ring insured immediately. So as long as his "appraisal" can verify to you that the stone is in the same condition as it was when it was sent to Tacori and the value of the ring is close to the stone price plus setting price, then you are all set! Reasons to get independent appraisals are when a stone is being bought without a lab report, a ring is received as a gift or inheritance and needs to be appraised for insurance purposes, a stone is being bought second hand from an individual, etc. Buying a GIA or AGS graded stone from a reliable vendor is the one circumstance that I see no need for an additional appraisal as long as the valuation your jeweler gives you is reasonable. You don't want to drastically overinsure.

(I insured with this exact kind of valuation after my stone was set.)
 

footshooter5

Rough_Rock
Joined
May 2, 2011
Messages
30
Thanks for the fast replies!

The stone + setting appraised for a little bit more than what I paid for it, but based on retail store prices, it's about what I expected, and it's an AGS certed stone, so I feel pretty confident with that.

As always, pricescope members come through :)
 

denverappraiser

Ideal_Rock
Trade
Joined
Jul 21, 2004
Messages
8,838
The usual problem with jewelry store appraisals, beyond the obvious problems that can stem from the conflict of interest, are in providing sufficient detail in the description to allow the insurance company to properly replace the piece in the case of a loss. Given that you've got a lab graded stone and a branded setting it's shouldn't be that hard for them to do it well if they want. That said, the test is easy enough. Read it as if you were reading a purchase order for the replacement. Does it have sufficient detail included to do that? It should have photos, the brand, a copy of the AGS report, and the style number. Value on this sort of thing isn't usually all that troublesome but having just bought the thing, you've got a pretty good idea of what it'll cost to replace. Is the value appropriate to do that?

The other tricky area is evaluating craftsmanship and condition. That's where one of the conflict of interest issues lies. If you're not worried about the quality control step that comes from using an outside inspector and the document is sufficient for the above replacement purpose than you should be fine with a jeweler authored report.
 
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