How to Appraise Items Before Moving or Putting Them in Storage

When preparing for a residential move, one essential component is figuring out how to pack all your belongings. If you have high-value items or antiques, you should take extra care with them to ensure they arrive in one piece.

However, while determining the logistics of your move is vital, you may be missing another step — appraisal. If you haven’t considered appraising your valuables before moving them or putting them into a storage unit, now’s the time to set it up. Let’s discuss the appraisal process and why you might consider it.

How to Appraise Items Professionally

Fortunately, you can find professional appraisers online with a quick search and filter by ratings and their proximity to your location. When looking at appraisers, make sure they specialize in the types of belongings they’ll look at. For example, if you’re appraising high-end electronics, you might not want to work exclusively with an antique specialist.

Be sure to contact the appraiser beforehand to discuss the items they’ll be looking at and their condition. The more information you can provide ahead of time, the faster and smoother the appraisal process will be, so you can get back to planning your move.

It’s also a good idea to separate and clean these items before the appraiser arrives. If you’re worried about using harsh chemicals on some belongings, you can wait and ask the appraiser for their recommendation. Most items just require good dusting.

Which Items Should You Appraise Before Moving?

Technically, you could appraise all of your belongings before transporting them, but as a rule, these items are appraised the most often:

  • Gold and Jewelry
  • Antiques
  • Fine Art
  • High-End Electronics
  • Vintage Collectibles
  • Firearms

If you need help deciding what to appraise, consider how much you paid for the item and how much it would cost to replace it if it gets lost, stolen, or damaged during transit. Generally, anything $500 or more is worth an appraisal, but ultimately, it’s up to you what you consider valuable and what you want to attach a dollar value to.

Why Appraise Your Valuables?

There are a couple of reasons to appraise your valuables before moving or shipping them to storage, such as:

  • Insurance Claims – You may have property insurance on individual items or hope for your homeowner’s coverage to take care of them. Either way, you need to know how much the item is worth before making a claim.
  • Paperwork Protection – If something does happen to your valuables during a move, it may be impossible to determine their worth after the fact. For example, if an item gets stolen, you need proof of ownership and its value when filing a police report. So, appraising your belongings beforehand gives you ample evidence and establishes a paper trail.

Get Moving Help for Your Most Precious Belongings

Work with trusted professional movers if you need assistance with your upcoming move. Contact us to see what moving options we provide.