A Matter of Brilliance is a professional jewelry appraisal company based in Newton, MA, founded by Aimee Berrent, Graduate Gemologist. Our appraisals can be used to:
A jewelry appraisal will inform you what the average price an item would sell for.
Independent appraisers conduct the appraisal because they are unbiased. Since they don’t buy or sell jewelry they are less likely to overvalue the jewelry. They will inspect all aspects of your jewelry (size, color, quality, etc) and will conduct market research to determine the value.
Is the Document I Received with my Jewelry an Appraisal?
Many people mistake the document they received when they purchased the jewelry for an appraisal. Although the document may be titled appraisal it is more of a document of sale. Market research was not conducted to create the document but instead the price was determined by what the seller thought the item should sell for.
Why Appraise at all?
An official appraisal is necessary for insurance and estate planning. Fair market value appraisals indicate the amount a piece would be sold for between a willing buyer and seller. This appraisal can be used for estate tax determination and division of property in a divorce. A fair market value can be helpful to fair division of jewelry assets among loved ones.
Insurance replacement appraisals provide you protection for reimbursement in case of loss. This appraisal will give you a document that describes your item exactly (stone clarity, size, color, quality and value). You will be able to get the lost item replaced with a similar item. Gems of the same size can have significantly different values so you need an appraisal to ensure your replacement is comparable to the original.
How Often Do I Need to Have Jewelry Appraised?
You may think that if you get your jewelry appraised immediately after purchase you are set for life. However appraisals are only valid for a limited period of time. The reasons jewelry needs to be appraised every few years include:
- Jewelry markets can be volatile and prices for certain stones change from year to year. You will want to have up to date information.
- As the inflation rate changes the values of your jewelry may change. Again up to date information is necessary especially for insurance purposes.
- Any damage to your jewelry may impact the value. If you are passing jewelry on to beneficiaries and want to divide equitably you will want to verify the condition has not changed.
The Insurance Institute of America recommends that you have your jewelry appraisal updated every 2 years. If you are insuring your jewelry you will want to check your specific insurance policy to find out how often they require appraisals. It is unlikely they will provide you an appraisal reminder so you will need to keep track yourself.
For estate planning or insurance replacement appraisals of your jewelry contact us.