Quilt Appraisals

The American Quilter’s Society established an education and certification program for appraising quilts and quilted textiles in 1988. The program has set strict educational and ethical guidelines for appraisers and is widely respected nationwide. I attended the appraisal training courses at the National Quilt Museum in Paducah, KY in April 2012 and am qualified to write appraisals for quilts and quilted textiles. I am not yet certified by AQS. If you are seeking an AQS certified appraiser, there is a complete list of certified appraisers on the AQS web site.

I am not a quilt dealer and will not purchase your quilt or broker its sale. I will only write an appraisal for the current owner of the quilt and only in his/her presence.

I normally charge $35 per item for a standard written appraisal. If your item has a value of less than $200, I will not write an appraisal and there will be no charge. There may be an additional charge for items that require further research. I will seek your approval before performing any additional research and a price based on an hourly rate will be agreed upon before hand.

A written appraisal is a statement of my opinion of the value of your quilt on the day of the appraisal. It is based on current market conditions and the items’s condition and workmanship on that day. Your written appraisal will include a brief description of the item, its age, size, color, provenance and a photo taken by me on the day of the appraisal.

There are three types of appraisals and you will asked to choose one before the appraisal begins. The stated appraisal value of your quilt may be different depending upon the type of appraisal.

Types of Appraisals:

1) A fair market appraisal establishes a value for an item that determines what a willing buyer may pay a willing seller when both parties have equal knowledge concerning the item and neither party is under pressure to buy or sell. A fair market value placed upon an item does not guarantee you will realize that value in a sale. The value is an opinion. It is based upon recent completed sales of other similar quilts.

2) A donation, gift, or estate appraisal provides written documentation of a quilt’s value as required by the IRS. Currently, the IRS requires that the appraisal take place less than 30 days prior to the donation. In some cases, I will be required to sign the IRS donation form. You should check with a tax expert or the IRS concerning the current laws before requesting this type of appraisal and bring all the appropriate forms with you to the appraisal appointment.

3) An insurance appraisal is the most common type of appraisal written. It is essentially the replacement value of the quilt. If you have properly insured your item, this is the amount your insurance company should compensate you if it is lost, stolen or damaged. Check with your insurance company to verify your quilt is properly covered in your policy. The insurance replacement value is determined by what it will cost to replace the quilt with one of “like and kind.” Quilts and other unique or antique items require an appraisal to determine their value. Most insurance adjusters will not allow compensation for your quilt beyond the cost of a normal blanket without a written appraisal.

Store your written appraisal in a fire proof strong box or safety deposit box along with your other important papers. Do not store it with the quilt.

Your appraisal will contain personal information about you and your private property. I will keep the information confidential and will not release it to anyone other than yourself. However, in order to accurately determine the appropriate value for your quilt, I may need to consult with other professional appraisers. I will only disclose that information which is necessary to determine the quilt’s value which will not include any personal information about you or your family. I will not disclose your name, address or contact information. I will request your permission prior to using or sharing general information about your quilt for professional purposes such as comparing it to other quilts or writing research and study papers.

An appraisal is generally accurate for up to five years. It is a good practice to have your appraisal updated every five years, particularly for insurance purposes. I charge $20 to update an appraisal that I have previously written. The appraisal becomes invalid if any changes are made to it by anyone other than myself. Appraisals are only valid for use by the owner listed on the appraisal. If you sell or gift your quilt to someone else, the appraisal becomes invalid. The new owner should consult me for a new and updated appraisal, made out in their name.

If you would like to have your quilt or quilted item appraised, please contact me at earlymorningquilter@gmail.com


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