Aren’t all appraisers the same?

No. The federal government and most states do not license or certify personal property appraisers. Anyone can claim to be a personal property appraiser, even without formal training or experience.

How is Guernsey & Associates qualified to appraise my property?

All Guernsey and Associates appraisers are members of the International Society of Appraisers, the nation’s largest appraisal organization. ISA trains and periodically tests its members in the theory, methodology and ethics of appraising and the most current appraisal standards. ISA mandates and provides continuing education opportunities for members to hone their appraisal skills and deepen their knowledge in their specialties.

Why do I need to pay for the time that an appraiser spends to conduct research? Shouldn't appraisers be familiar with the value of most items?

While we can often estimate an object’s worth based on our knowledge and experience, we still must conduct market research at the time of the appraisal so that our values are concurrent with the effective date of the appraisal – art and antique markets fluctuate just like the stock market. We keep these comparable sales records in our work files, and in some instances in the appraisals themselves, to support the valuations should the appraisal ever be challenged by the IRS, an insurance company or another third party.

Do you ever charge on a percentage basis?

No. Our ethics prohibit charging a fee based on a percentage of the value of an item. We charge an hourly rate or negotiate a fee upfront for large projects.

If I want to sell something, will you buy it?

No. We can make recommendations on the best way to sell your art or antique, or where to go. In this way you will never worry that your appraised item was undervalued so that the appraiser could profit by purchasing it at a low price.

Will you authenticate my work of art or special object?

No. Appraisers generally are not qualified to authenticate. It there is a question of authenticity, we will refer you to the appropriate recognized expert authenticator.