The Art Appraisal Process

Richard Associates Art Appraisals in Santa Fe, NM, offers qualified art appraisal services for historic American Indian Art and Contemporary Paintings, including those from the late Modern period. The art appraisal process for such items often involves a complex set of factors that are analyzed to derive at the proper valuation for the purpose of the appraisal report.

Art Appraisal Process, Santa Fe New Mexico. Native American Antiquities - Contemporary Paintings. Richard Associates Art AppraisalsDeveloping an appraisal report begins with an initial consultation to determine the intended use of the report and to better understand the nature and history of the artwork. After inspecting the items for quality, condition and identification purposes – either in person or via photographs – extensive research is conducted and data compiled in order to come to a determination of value within the appropriate marketplace. Understanding the nuances of what the market pricing is indicating for a particular artwork is imperative and is obtained through research and personal knowledge. Once the values have been established along with any conditional or assumptive provisos, an extensive report is written which is individually crafted for the intended use and specific needs of our clients. All these step in the art appraisal process are necessary to reach a credible conclusion. The end result is a multi-page report that includes photos, descriptions, market analysis, values and value reasonings for each item. These can be delivered electronically or in printed form. All appraisals comply with the Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice (USPAP) as well as the Appraisal Report Writing Standard and Code of Ethics set by the International Society of Appraisers (ISA).

Verbal appraisal reports are also available, with certain limitations. These can be useful for “I just want to know” situations and for informed decision making, when a full written report may not be needed. In this scenario, the appraiser provides no written documents, which provides a cost savings benefit. The client is encouraged to take notes and ask questions as the report is read.Art Appraisal Process, Santa Fe New Mexico. Native American Antiquities - Contemporary Paintings. Richard Associates Art Appraisals

Appraisals are often needed for the purposes of:

  • Insurance Coverage / Claims
  • Charitable Donation Tax Deductions
  • Equitable Distribution, Estate / Divorce
  • Estate Planning
  • Estate Tax Liability
  • Capital Gains Tax Liability
  • Financial Planning / Informed Decision Making

For federal tax reporting purposes such as donations and estate matters, the IRS requires that art appraisal services be performed by a qualified appraiser. This is someone who has met certain levels of defined competency and knows the established criteria for such appraisals. Members of appraisal organizations such as the International Society of Appraisers are required to adhere to the Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice (USPAP), developed by The Appraisal Foundation, as well as continuing education requirements. Richard Associates Art Appraisals, located in Santa Fe, NM, meets all these qualifications.

Please call for a free consultation.


Written Appraisal Reports:

$225 per hour for inspection, research, report writing and consultation. Written appraisals have a $350 minimum fee for a single item. IRS related reports have a $550 minimum for a single item due to increased complexity. Set up and document preparation costs are better absorbed when distributed across multi-item appraisals. The initial phone consultation is always free of charge.

Verbal Appraisals:  Quoted on a per item basis due to varying complexities – $275 is the minimum fee for a single item. 

Court / Legal:  $300 per hour for expert witness testimony, depositions, conference, court preparation and appearance. Retainer to be paid in advance. 

Travel:  $1000 per day plus all incurred expenses and / or per diem as agreed upon.

New Mexico tax will be added to all in-state invoices.