Dynamic Art Market Requires Regular Value Updates

Autumn Leafs by Leonid Afremov
Autumn Leafs by Leonid Afremov

Most serious fine art collectors are aware that, for insurance purposes, their scheduled pieces require regular value updates to be compliant with their chosen insurer’s coverage policy. The art market is one of the most dynamic categories of personal property, if not the most. The market (collectors of art) are continuously monitoring auction events to determine a value basis for their next acquisition attempt. A motivated buyer, in a single auction event, can spur an upward value trend of impressive scale. Likewise, a single disappointing auction event can send ripples through the market, shaking the confidence of previously excited enthusiasts.

Insurers understand sometimes rapid fluctuation in values, as well as trending values over time. For this reason, insurers require regular value updates of items that have been scheduled. An update of your fine art is typically required every 2-4 years, depending on the insurer. It is important to understand, unless a piece or the collection has significant value, the insurer is unlikely to monitor and contact you to request the value update.

However, that doesn’t get you off the hook if you have a claim. Your claim will be submitted, and it is likely to generate a requirement from your insurer to “get an appraisal to determine the current value.” Of course, if you are submitting a claim it is probably because the piece(s) are damaged, destroyed, or missing – making a value update problematic and satisfaction of your claim problematic. The answer – understand your insurer’s value update requirement and adhere.

Nugent Appraisal updates the values of hundreds of fine art items every month, typically from previous appraisals the owners have. Insurers typically allow us to utilize the descriptions and images acquired by a previous appraiser to identify items. With this reliable information, we secure the latest market data to bring the values current and satisfy the insurers’ requirement. If a previous appraisal is not available because it is lost, then you certainly can secure the images and descriptions Nugent Appraisal requires. So, the next time you – the inventory professional – are in a home that has fine art ask the question “are your fine art insurance values current so there is no concern if you must submit a claim?”

Remember, you are adding value to your service by providing your client critical information while at the same time creating an additional revenue stream for your business. You will earn $25-$50 for each fine art piece that Nugent Appraisal updates.

You’ll never walk into a home and look at art the same way again!