Most people know the value of stocks and bonds. Bank Accounts are pretty easy to read, as are statements from your retirement advisor. Your house has an assessed value depending on the market condition.
But what about the hidden asset value of items you have collected over the years or inherited from family and friends?
True collectors probably subscribe to or join organizations of shared interest. Value can be determined by the experience of the group or newsletters. The general public has purchased or inherited pieces o the years and some of these items may be valuable: maybe not.
Value is a relative term. By definition: What a willing buyer will give a willing seller not under duress. During one’s lifetime is probably the best time to assess valuables. What will happen when we no longer need our possessions?
1.) Will you leave them to someone along with proper documentation? Maybe to charities, family, friends?
2.) Will the government get involved and help with liquidating them? Not such a good idea!
When someone inherits a “hard asset,” what are they to do? Do they share the same interest in an item that the original owner did?
Do they sell it for money or trade to use as they have the need The questions go on and the many options and opportunities make it very confusing for most of us People tend to put valuables in sofas, safe deposit boxes or just under a mattress or maybe a desk.
There is not the space to list the multiple books that have been written on why people do what they do with things If there is not a planned course of disposition of valuables what happens?
If items are inherited or given to charities, they are probably going to be sold. Most recipients would rather have the money.
If they sell, how do they do this? BIG question! If someone does not know the accurate value, they could be giving away assets for pennies on the dollar. You could auction the items: have an estate sale or call in private collectors This can sometimes work against the estate’s value.
There are some very greedy people out there that prey on people’s lack of knowledge. When it comes time to look at selling, con- sider: Is the Seller Bonded, Insured, and Licensed?
Are receipts issued and inventory lists given with at least two people present? This is a good start to some of the things you need to consider when selling tangible assets.
Next month we will get more specific on pieces and what to watch for when selling. Pearlman’s has been a family jewelry business in Battle Creek for 84 years.