An auction consultant/personal property appraiser’s primary purpose is to help solve problems with property. Two recent articles (one in the The Huffington Post and one in The Wall Street Journal) informs and illustrates how consultant/appraisers might assist you when it is time to solve problems with your property:
David Burton’s Huffington Post article, “The Four D’s in Personal Property Appraisal: Death, Disaster, Debt and Divorce” is a thorough description of how an appraisal helps with personal property issues. Essentially, you need a particular value for a particular reason. Whether that reason is to insure your items or to provide a basis to equitably distribute property. To read this article click here.
I understand that getting an appraisal isn’t at the top of most people’s lists of a fun way to invest their money. Most people would probably prefer to put it off or never get the appraisal at all. But appraisals are necessary to solve particular problems. Would you prefer to know the value of your treasured item – or have your insurance company tell you the value? I happily work with clients after a piece of property is destroyed to determine the value and the replacement cost. However, if an item has been damaged, you may be in the midst of other financially complicated problems. Having an insurance appraisal before disaster strikes can provide some peace of mind.
The majority of my work in recent years has been writing appraisal reports for non-cash charitable contributions. These donations result in a client receiving a tax incentive for their donation. An appraisal is necessary to justify that tax deduction. Still, appraisals are easy to put off. I especially notice this when my phone starts ringing at the end of the year. Providing an appraisal report is neither quick nor easy, nor should it be. When you are working with high-end property and the requirements of the IRS require a specialized skill set because they are complicated and, of course, take time to produce. Waiting until the end of the year will, most likely, put your donation appraisal into the following tax year.
The other article comes from The Wall Street Journal writer Daniel Grant and is titled, “Art Auction Houses Want to Deal.” Grant summarizes some of the areas where auction houses are willing to negotiate their fees. If you have never worked with an auction house or aren’t familiar with the auction process, his points may surprise you. This is precisely why I provide auction-consulting services. To read this article click here.
Having someone familiar with the process and negotiating on your behalf, saves you time and headache.
Many of my clients are celebrities, their heirs, or collectors. When they downsize or decide to share their collections, they have a variety of options. Not all property needs to be sold at auction, an entire collection does not need to be donated. A combination of options can be employed. A consultant will work with a client to determine what will sell best at auction, what will benefit an archive or museum with your donation, and what is best to simply send away to a second hand store or the trash. Celebrities and public personalities in particular have a certain level of privacy to maintain. By working with Mahn Miller Collective, Inc. clients can be confident that all options are considered; that their best interests and reputation are being protected.