Tag: ASA

Professional, Unbiased Eyes

True Story:

A gentleman here in Phoenix, Arizona viewed online auction offerings to be sold in California.

Condition reports for three of the items were not available until the day of the sale.

Nancy Martin, ASA, seasoned appraiser of antiques and decorative arts, was employed to view the property for description accuracy, condition observations and qualitative commentary.

  • Measurements were not accurate in all cases
  • Condition issues caused two of four items to be ruled out for potential purchase
  • Qualitative issues forced the elimination of the third item for potential acquisition
  • Martin’s experience guided the degree of bidding on the remaining item

Conclusion:  Martin’s fee was money well spent, benefiting hugely the potential purchaser.

A condition report from auction house arrived the morning of the sale, at which time the house representative wrote “All 3 are in overall good condition.”

Nancy Martin, ASA Antiques & Decorative Arts

To locate designated ASA appraisers in other parts of the country, American Society of Appraisers.


A Day in the Life . . .

Assignment: Help lessen a hoarder’s “Art” Collection

One room at a time, identify reproductions versus original art or art with significant value.

Help the hoarder to recognize reproductions with respect to future purchases.

Attach a single color of post it to all reproductions.

Isolate tourist-oriented art

Isolate amateur art

Separate artworks with significant condition issues

Select research-worthy original artworks

Report on researched values

Videos will be created to facilitate each of these steps and posted in the future.

Corinne Cain, ASA
Accredited Senior Appraiser
Fine Arts & American Indian Arts


Donations are Really Trades

After hearing someone complain for the umpteenth time “It isn’t fair to have to pay for an appraisal, when I am giving something away!”

At first I agreed and then I rethought about her comment, after she asked what the alternatives were.

The alternatives are

  • donate the item and take under $500 as its fair market value, so an appraisal is not required
  • donate the item and take no deduction
  • give the item to your kids, provided its value does not exceed the maximum allowed per year non taxable
  • do nothing and it can be in your estate sale

These steps rejected, brought us back to the premise, paying money to have a professional set and defend the item’s value, in the course of giving something away.

Since the taxpayer is receiving a deduction toward their federal income tax responsibility, donating art is NOT a gift.  You are trading an object and the cost of an appraisal for a reduction in your tax burden.  Therefore your cost in this trade is what was paid for the item coupled with the cost of the appraisal.  In some cases the cost of the appraisal is a deductible expense.

Sometimes a more accurate perspective is helpful to digest one alternative in “gifting” appreciating property (artwork).

Since the Nixon papers, charities/ museums have been disqualified to pay for the appraisal.

Corinne Cain, ASA

Accredited Senior Appraiser/  Fine Arts & American Indian Arts


Webinar Appraising American Indian Fine Arts

Dubbed “World Class” !!! 70 attendees indicated its content was well worth the time and money

Looking forward to creating a Power Point presentation titled “Purchasing American Indian Jewelry Intelligently“.

Corinne Cain, ASA
Accredited Senior Appraiser
American Society of Appraisers
Personal Property/ Fine Arts & American Indian Arts


Splendid Fine Art Appraiser’s Handbook !!!

This understated publication spells out succinctly what is expected from a competent Fine Art appraiser.

  • art handling, naming recommended tools
  • condition issues — what to look for
  • fine art terminology used in the descriptive process

Mature collectors can review this treatise to learn if the appraisals they’ve obtained in the past were properly carried out.  Curatorial people might want to be acquainted with what proper fine art appraisals are expected to contain.  Insurance company representatives may want to be sure high ticket artworks have been properly investigated.

www.JudithVance.com has copies for sale, as does Fraser Publishing based in New Hampshire

Judith is a fellow Accredited Senior Appraiser with a designation in Fine Arts and a very fine member of the appraiser community.

Price is $45

Corinne Cain, ASA  Accredited Senior Appraiser, Fine Arts & American Indian Arts  www.SavvyCollector.com


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