"Ms. Cheney photographed the items in my home, and was professional, knowledgeable, and extremely courteous. She delivered the appraisal report in a very timely manner, and spent considerable time explaining her findings. The report was comprehensive and well-written, and my children will find the information she provided in the report very enlightening when they inherit the appraised items. I highly recommend Cheney Appraisal Services."
Huntington Station, NY
"The report served as a most helpful tool for us as a family group to review and assess family belongings. It made the relatively difficult task of equitable distribution much easier, and having such a well organized report made the whole process much more efficient. The appraiser consulted with us ahead of time so that she could in fact best determine how the report would be the most helpful for us. Her work resulted in very satisfied customers and a report that will be very useful for years to come!"
The Ridgway Family
Garden City, NY
"Cheney Appraisal Services came to my attention through a trusted personal contact. After meeting with them I was very impressed with the directness, professionalism, and knowledge clearly demonstrated during the selection process. And their fees were highly competitive. Cheney Appraisal not only provided estate and insurance reports but also a very accurate, detailed and professionally photographed, and extremely helpful catalog of a substantial number of works spanning a sixty-year professional career. Working with Cheney Appraisal is a sheer delight. I was incredibly impressed that they were able to see, understand, and appreciate the evolution of Len's work as it evolved over the years, and to perceive its value and importance in the context of American art. Their genuine personal involvement, coupled with a high degree of knowledge, professionalism, and ethical standards, resulted in a product beyond what I had even anticipated. I would not hesitate one moment in recommending Cheney Appraisal Services for art appraisal projects, large and small."
New York, NY
"The report was very useful in many ways. It was thorough, clean and informative, well documented and well prepared helping me to understand the field and my role as executor. Linda Cheney is clearly involved in her profession and takes great pride in her work. She is professional, very well informed and always courteous, pleasant and easy to deal with. Linda is available and responsive to questions, patient and understanding of one's needs. Her standards are high and on the basis of the estate appraisal she did for us – more than met them. Cheney Appraisal Services offers an unusual combination of characteristics and qualities that are seldom found. I would highly recommend them to anyone without hesitation."
New York, NY
"Working with Linda was a pleasure. She was very responsive, totally knew her stuff and turned around a fabulous analysis in a short time frame at a reasonable cost. I highly recommend her and would use her again."
Brooklyn, New York
"Dear Ms. Cheney, Thank you very much for your illuminating appraisal of my Venezuelan paintings and Japanese prints. I was greatly informed by your professional expertise and gratified by your discerning attention to detail and by your patient explanation to me of appraisal methods and practices. I also greatly appreciate your comprehensive and beautifully presented appraisal which gives me a wealth of knowledge including biographies of the artists, their styles and influences and also additional biographic resources. Thank you also for the kind and generous effort to locate information about painting conservators in this area. It was a pleasure to meet you and you are a natural teacher and an outstanding representative of the appraisal profession." Sincerely,
Bel Air, Maryland
"Ms. Cheney did an outstanding professional evaluation of my marble busts, Bible and china pieces. The portfolio presented to me had depth of information, beautiful photos, and fair market values. Ms. Cheney’s courteous attitude and dependability are highly recommended and I look forward to future appraisals."
New York, New York
"Linda Cheney is knowledgeable, professional, prompt and pleasant. Her fees are very reasonable; she is attentive to detail and met all my appraisal needs."
Berkeley, CA (for Brooklyn, NY estate)
The following client names have been changed to remain anonymous:
Robert, a Trust and Estate attorney, contacted us to provide an appraisal of hs client’s personal property for a taxable estate. The estate included a large collection of antique furnishings, fine art, sterling silver, porcelain, jewelry, and oriental carpets. The on-site inspection was scheduled and a comprehensive approach was taken by documenting an inventory of all items room-by-room.
Adhering to all IRS code, the appraisal included a description of each item that stated the physical condition of the object in addition to the subject, medium, size, visible marks, and provenance. The valuation process and amount of documentation required for each item depended upon the fair market value. Specifically, objects with no value were indicated no market value, items valued at no more than $100 were grouped together, articles with values over $100 or more were given a separate value. Finally, items with values of $5000 or more included comparable research to support the valuation conclusion.
The itemized descriptions with photographs, appraiser’s certification, valuation approach, market analysis, and conclusions and total fair market value were included in the Appraisal Report.
Robert was then able to add the fair market value of the personal property to the other estate assets in order to file the federal and state estate tax returns.
John was appointed Executor of his mother’s estate. As Executor, he was responsible for distributing the estate assets in accordance with the terms of the will which stated that he and his sister would receive one half of their mother’s estate. The estate included personal property such as antique furnishings, fine art, sterling silver and oriental carpets. John contacted us to provide an equitable distribution appraisal at the fair market value.
First, we did an onsite inspection to take a room-by-room inventory of all personal property in the home. Next, comparable items sold at auction were researched to arrive at the appraised value. We then presented the itemized inventory with descriptions, photographs, and values in a comprehensive written report that John and his attorney used to divide the estate evenly between the two siblings.
Michele decided to donate her Rembrandt ( 1606 - 1669 ) print to her alma mater and wanted to take a tax deduction. According to IRS code any donor who claims a charitable deduction of $5,000 or more must obtain a qualified appraisal of the item’s value. Michele contacted us and we arranged an inspection to photograph, measure and inspect the print firsthand. Titled “Decent from the Cross", the print was signed and dated 1633 with gallery documentation stating “probably issued by Le Veuve Jean circa 1826”. In this case, we consulted catalogue raisonnés by G.W. Nowell-Usticke and Biörklund-Barnard to verify the printing date, plate and state. These factors along with the condition were vital in determining the fair market value. All of this information along with comparable research was included in the appraisal report and sent to the client with IRS Form 8283, Non-Cash Charitable Contribution signed by the appraiser so Michele could take her tax deduction.
* A catalogue raisonné is a comprehensive, annotated listing of all the known works of an artist either in a particular medium or all media.
Emily inherited a collection of Andy Warhol prints from her father and contacted us to get an insurance appraisal. Emily was residing in Florida so instead of us doing an in-home inspection she submitted purchase receipts from the gallery where her father had bought the prints along with high resolution photographs of each print front and back. With this documentation and the photographs, we were able to read the signatures and Warhol estate stamps to establish solid provenance and determine the condition. We then contacted galleries selling comparable Warhol prints to arrive at the retail replacement value. The print descriptions, photographs and valuation were all included in a comprehensive report that Emily could send to her insurance agent to schedule the works on her insurance policy.
Abe and Ellie moved into the city and discovered their furnishings suffered damage by the moving company. They wanted to file a claim with the insurance company so they called us for a damage/loss appraisal. Our approach included several steps:
We determined the original replacement cost value of each item using comparable sales from antique dealers and galleries; total $34,800.
A furniture restorer was contacted to provide an itemized description of the damage, determine if the furniture could be restored and at what cost. The restorer determined the condition was poor; wood furniture was broken, cracked, split and scratched, however, it could be restored for a total cost of $17,300. Much of the restoration work consisted of re-gluing parts of furniture and touching up scratches.
We assessed any diminution (loss) of value after restoration. Because the repairs were not that visible, they did not diminish the values significantly. Total loss of value was 10% of replacement cost or $3,480.
The restoration cost and depreciation (or loss of value) were then added to arrive at the total amount due to Abe and Ellie: $20,780.
Our appraisal report was submitted to their insurance company so they were able to claim the cost of damage to their furniture.
Before and after restoration of Queen Anne style chairs:
Beth was downsizing and wanted to sell her collection of mid-century modern furnishings to a dealer who requested an asking price. Although she has original sales receipts from the 1960s, she had no idea of the current value so she called us for an appraisal. We inspected the items and identified the maker as Hans Wegner (1914-2007), one of the lead designers of Danish Modern furniture. We knew the demand for his work is high and Mid-Century Modern is currently one of the biggest interior design trends. After researching comparable works for sale by Wegner, we provided a marketable cash value appraisal so Beth could successfully negotiate the sale of her furnishings.