30 Aug You would be surprised… (a discussion of Fair Market Value of personal property)
Stephanie Kenyon, 60, the owner of Sloans & Kenyon Auctioneers and Appraisers in Chevy Chase, says the market is flooded with boomer rejects. “Hardly a day goes by that we don’t get calls from people who want to sell a big dining room set or bedroom suite because nobody in the family wants it. Millennials don’t want brown furniture, rocking chairs or silver-plated tea sets. Millennials don’t polish silver.” The formal furniture is often sold at bargain prices, or if it’s not in good shape, it might go straight to the dump.
Let’s talk about other things that are NOT Fair Market Value [FMV]:
- It is not what you paid for an item (most people pay high retail and not FMV).
- It is not wishful thinking. True values are arrived at with careful research and methodology.
- It is not family lore. We know the stories of how “valuable” mom always said an item was, but that is not fair market value. Many of our older moms may not understand how very different things are today, or why little girls have little interest in their prized possessions.
- It is not outdated appraisal values that were probably written for insurance purposes or in a much healthier market.
- It is not what you think it should be, nor the amount of money needed to pay bills.
- It is not the asking price you see on a similar item on the internet or Ebay. Asking prices are just asking prices. We’re interested in what it actually SOLD FOR.
- It is not based on sentimentality (how much you, or a loved one, cherished it).
- It is not about how old it is or how long you’ve had it. “Old” doesn’t necessarily mean it has value.
Bottom line: An item is worth what someone will give you for it. Always enlist the help of a professional to guide you through, when you don’t have the answers.
According to the Breus Group, there are different methods of valuation, each for their own purpose.
For equitable distribution [of an estate] [you would use the] Marketable Cash Value:
This is fair market value but net of all expenses. This value excludes all fees, costs and sales commissions and addresses the marketability of questionable items. As the value so derived represents the actual proceeds that will be paid to the seller after the sale which is in some cases 25% to 30% less than sale or hammer price, this method is most often used in equitable distribution as well as divorce settlements.
Estate Appraiser Julie Hall, the Estate Lady has some excellent advice on her informative blog The Estate Lady Speaks:
Don’t do ANYTHING until you know what it is and what it’s worth. Do not give items to neighbors, friends, family, or charity until everything has been looked at by a professional appraiser, or you have been advised what the best method(s) is/are to proceed with dissolution of the estate. It is well worth the cost to get this information. It will even assist with equitable distribution, thereby keeping things as neutral as possible between the siblings.
- Consult a professional appraiser first, before giving anything away.
- Don’t have expectation of the value of any item—anything could surprise you, in either direction.
- Fair Market Value is what people are willing to pay in the marketplace today.
- If you keep sentimental items, keep them because you enjoy them, not because you think your kids might want them, or to make sure your siblings don’t get them.
- Choose the more timeless pieces to bring home with you that you know you will appreciate for years to come. In other words, don’t keep clutter just because it belonged to your grandmother.
If you need to have an estate clear out, a house or apartment cleared out quickly for rapid sale, downsize or relocation, we can help anywhere in the United States or Canada!
If you have any questions about the One Week Clear Out, please feel free to contact Jessica: In Perfect Order
((¸¸.·´ ..·´ Jessica -:¦:-