Penny Brittain is a consultant to Sworders Fine Art Auctioneers, a regular contributor to the BBC's Antiques Roadshow and runs her own consultancy called 'The Art and Antiques Service'. If you require professional advice concerning the valuation of antiques and works of art contact The Art & Antiques Service.
Antique Valuations Do's and Don'ts
1. DO get an accurate assessment of your home contents to indicate how much insurance you need to buy. Specific attention to be paid to high value items including antiques and works of art, with:
- Replacement Values
- Digital Pictures
This is important because the single article limit on most policies is usually £1000 - so if you didn't get your £3000 inherited painting valued and specified on the policy you'd be out of pocket by £2000 in the event of a claim.
2. DO ask your broker exactly what information the insurer needs from the valuation.
3. DO choose your valuer carefully: EITHER select an independent valuer recommended by your broker, solicitor, accountant or another professional, OR contact a reputable practice of auctioneers.
4. DO check your valuer's credentials and qualifications - look out for FRICS (Fellow of the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors) or ASFAAV (Associate of the Society of Fine Art Auctioneers and Valuers) accreditation.
5. DO ask what areas of expertise the valuer covers. Don't expect a general valuer to be able to give an opinion on everything: jewellery and paintings require a specialist opinion.
6. DO ask how the valuation will be charged - either on a percentage basis of the total, or on an agreed hourly rate, plus expenses and VAT if applicable.
7. DO get the house contents replacement figures agreed by your insurer or broker. They need up to date information to provide appropriate cover.
8. DON'T expect your valuer to decide the level of cover needed - this is down to your broker or insurer; discuss the brief at the outset.
9. DON'T leave the valuation to be done after the horse has bolted - get it done NOW!
10. DON'T leave the valuation document lying around as a "signpost to quality" for prying eyes.
11. DO keep a copy of the valuation elsewhere in case of fire, e.g.: email it to your broker.
For further information on insuring your antiques and works of art or your household possessions please enquire now!.