Antiques questions and answers

Following are a number of our most commonly asked questions. Every attempt is made to answer them fully however if you still have questions then please do not hesitate to make contact.


QHow do you determine replacement value?

Replacement values are typically used in insurance claims, especially for objects that appreciate with time. This value is generally what you might expect to pay to acquire the same object at the time of valuation or loss. For common objects or items still being manufactured the replacement value is typically known and usually straight forward to determine. Where objects are very old, rare, or no longer manufactured, sources for replacement may come from international suppliers. Values for items sourced overseas will include consideration of taxes, duties, and postage & packaging. Some objects may even require special certification, this cost would also be considered.


QWhat if you cannot replace an object?

ANot all objects can be replaced with identical examples. Some items are one-off works of art, others may be out of production or from a limited edition. In these situations we value the object based on a comparable object. If this is not possible, we will use our judgement to provide a value that we believe a specialised retailed might set.


QWhat if I have one item damaged from a set, do you value that item or the whole set?

AGenerally the set is to be valued and not the individual item. If individual objects from a set are readily replaceable then we may provide a value to replace that individual item. An example where we may provide value of an individual item might be where a dinner plate from a common dinner set is lost, we would then provide a value to replace that dinner plate rather than the entire set. Sets of crystal glasses are often replaceable through a set of two. Again, each situation is different and we will discus at the time to ensure you are happy with our direction.


QWhat kind of value do you assign to deceased estate or matrimonial division situations?

AOur recommendation in these situations is to assign what is called a "Fire-sale" value, similar to the lower estimate you might see at an auction. Our reasoning behind a fire-sale value is two-fold; a) interested parties are not commonly expected to pay full retail pricing where they wish to obtain or retain ownership, and b) it is common in these situations to wish to liquidate the property in an expedited manner.


QWhat about resale values?

AWe often provide estimate resale values for objects. These values lie somewhere between a fire-sale and an insurance replacement value. Rarity and desirability determine where in the range the value will fall.


QHow does provenance effect the value?

AProvenance is very important. A simple common object may have little value, however if it was owned or used by a famous figure, event, or place then that object will carry a much higher value reflecting its enhanced desirability. There are some objects such as paintings that are notorious for fakes, provenance goes a very long way to proving authenticity and therefore value.


QCan you help out with CITES certification?

AYes, while we can not provide certification or fill out the application for you (the exporter), we can provide cataloguing details to help support the age, origin and/or species of the item.



Q&A about our fees and charges: 

We cover many services which all require different forms of work and expenses. It can be difficult to outline exactly what our fees may be without knowing your situation and having an idea of objects involved. The following Q&A will hopefully give you a better understanding however again, please ring if you have more questions.


QI have been told that your insurance valuation fee can be re-imbursed through my insurance claim - is this true?

AOur experience is that we have never come across a situation where the insurer has not covered all our fees. If you are unsure please contact your broker or insurance company to find out more.


QHow do you charge for cataloguing and valuations?

AFor standard household items or common antiques we charge a flat rate per object (or set of items e.g. a set of glasses). Where objects are rare or uncommon a research fee will be included based on time taken to research.


QAre there any costs associated with travel?

AYes, we charge for travel based on distance and time for the return trip from our offices in Harewood. Distance and time within the Christchurch area is taken from googles shortest route.

If travel requires flights then we simply charge the disbursements of the flight and rental car. Distance and time fees as highlighted prior will then occur from the rental car depot.


QWhat happens if there are extra costs associated with the valuation?

AFrom time to time we will incur costs associated with providing a valuation. Rental cars, accommodation, international phone calls etc. Disbursements are billed based on cost (or estimated cost) + 5% administration + GST.


QIs there a minimum charge?

AWhere Canterbury travel is required we have a minimum charge of 1 hour onsite plus the travel fees. For travel outside the Canterbury area we require 6 hours minimum onsite.


Common pricing :

► Discounts are often provided for multiple items.

Hourly rates
any size collection (min 1 hour) ⭐︎
  • Description and condition report.
  • Professional photography archived for future reference.
  • PDF file report.
  • Travel time and distance fees are additional.
  • Estimated sale value. ⭐︎⭐︎
ONSITE Appraisal
from $295
  • 1 hour at your place.
  • Travel within 20km of our office.
  • Highlight items of value.
  • Provide estimates of sale value.
  • Suggest methods to liquidate.


Prices are current as on 1st June 2015 and exclude G.S.T

⭐︎ From time to time there may be additional costs associated with research. In this case disbursements are passed on at cost +5% +gst.
⭐︎⭐︎ Unusual, very rare, and items of very high value may require extra research to understand origin and value. In this case research is charged at an hourly rate of $120+gst in addition to item rates.

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Insurance valuation reporting - Cataloguing of collections - Consultation to deceased estates & relationship division.

Free phone (0800 268 478)