Collectors not only want to know how much a specific antique object costs, but how much it’s worth. Online antique appraisals are convenient sources of information. Stories circulate about lucky buyers who paid next to nothing for valuable antiques. Doing your homework helps you get a fair price. Online valuations like JustAnswer and WorthPoint provide useful feedback on the quality and resale potential. But appraisals can also secure insurance and satisfy curiosity. Whatever the goal, investing some time and money can pay off.
From expert services to informed opinions, discover 4 of the best options for online antique appraisals.
Option #1 for Online Antique Appraisals: JustAnswer
Many certified antique appraisers are accessible from websites such as JustAnswer. Experts are available around the clock for online and phone consultations. Feedback is specialized too. From antique furniture appraisal and painting appraisal to rare book and jewelry appraisal – there’s a category of services to fit your needs.
Although some online companies require a subscription, JustAnswer and others charge only per each direct request. Along with clear photos, send item descriptions and any known history. Plus, share signatures, special markings, and manufacturer names when possible. You can start using the service by simply typing your question in the interactive chat below:
Option #2 for Online Antique Appraisals: Antique appraisal apps
Pull up appraisal apps on mobile devices. Apps like Go Canvas and WorthPoint are tools for both qualified appraisers and individual collectors. Grab details on the go when buying or selling at flea markets and yard sales. Features of these apps include quick valuation, picture upload, and up-to-date market value reports. Access to online applications may be through subscription only. But once signed in, you gain a virtual world of reference and antique industry news. Even test personal skills with “Appraise It Yourself,” an Antiques Roadshow play-along game.
WorthPoint is one of the largest online resources for finding, appraising, and buying or selling antiques, collectibles, and fine art. WorthPoint.com’s offerings include a price guide for researching and appraising antiques, collectibles, and art. A gallery of resources for identifying maker’s marks is also available, as well as a digital library of books from leading publishers covering a wide range of collecting topics.
WorthPoint partners with a diverse group of auction houses and online marketplaces, including industry leaders such as eBay, Julien’s, Rago Auctions, and Hindman Auctions. These auction houses provide WorthPoint with valuable data on art, antiques, vintage, luxury, and collectible sales. WorthPoint’s Price Guide features more than 540 million items and one billion photographs, from 2006 to the present. Auction houses that provide their auction data and results to WorthPoint expose their auction history to an active and engaged group of collectors and sellers around the world.
The WorthPoint Price Guide app is available on iOS and Android platforms.
Option #3 for Online Antique Appraisals: Online marketplaces and auctions
Compare similar pieces in similar conditions. Searching online antique marketplaces such as eBay can provide ballpark figures on retail value. For the best estimate, browse “completed sales” instead of open listings. Home to 2,500 active shop owners selling over 15 million products, Ruby Lane is another reliable marketplace that can help you get an idea of how much antiques and vintage collectibles are worth on the market. Another site to reference is, for instance, Etsy that has a “Certified Appraisals” inventory.
Online auctions are also great places for comparison. Many flea market vendors buy their merchandise from online auctions. As such, final bids can set realistic expectations about your own antiques. There are additional benefits too. Tracking offers keeps you in the loop on ups and downs in antique trends.
Option #4 for Online Antique Appraisals: Free online antique appraisal
Social media is a source for free, non-professional opinions. For example, Instagram and Facebook groups connect thousands of enthusiasts who love talking antiques. While vendors are not necessarily certified appraisers, their experience brings marketplace insights. They often know what an antique is worth, but they’re very aware of what it goes for. And it’s okay to be cautious. Opinions vary, particularly if someone is interested in purchasing your antiques for resale. Verified appraisers, however, should not offer to buy a piece they’re hired to evaluate.