How Much Does a Jewelry Appraisal Cost?

Written by: Staff

During a jewelry appraisal, a professional appraiser will be able to inspect your jewelry and give you an idea of what it is worth for a replacement, and this process is often done for insurance purposes since most insurance companies will require you have the value in writing.  It can also be done for reselling or tax purposes.  Unless you want to know what your jewelry is worth, most of the time, this appraisal won’t be necessary.

An appraiser can appraise items such as diamonds, gemstones, pearls, metals, watches, and just about any other piece of jewelry that can be found in a store.  The cost of an appraisal is going to vary depending on what jewelry is appraised, the reputation of the appraiser and geographical location.

Kate’s Engagement Ring by wwarby, on Flickr
Kate’s Engagement Ring” (CC BY 2.0) by wwarby

How much does a jewelry appraisal cost?

On average, a jewelry appraisal is going to be based on the size of the diamond, the piece of jewelry and complexity.  The costs, on average, can be anywhere from $50 to $125 per hour.  A simple wedding band, for instance, will cost a lot less than an engagement ring with a few stones.

If the appraiser doesn’t charge by the hour, then they will simply charge by the piece, and this, again, will depend on the size of the item.

Some, while rare, may charge a certain percentage of the final assessed value.

Refer to our table below to see what the average piece may cost when being appraised.  We were able to get these quotes by reaching out to certified appraisers in our area.  Keep in mind these ranges can be higher or even lower in your geographical area.

Type of JewelryAverage Price
Diamonds (0.01 to 1 carat)$50 to $100
Diamonds (1 to 2 carats)$100 to $175
Diamonds (2 to 3 carats)$175 to $300
Diamonds (3 to 4 carats)$250 to $400
Diamonds (4 to 5 carats)$350 to $550
Diamonds (5 carats+)$550+
Identifying a Gemstone$50 to $75
Pearls$50 to $100
Precious Metals$50 to $125
Watches$50 to $100; however, if the watch has diamonds, refer to costs above

Jewelry appraisal overview

A professional appraiser will take a piece of jewelry and will include any laboratory work to inspect and gather any facts about the jewelry, as well as conduct market research to compare the appraisal to other pieces on the market.  They should also clean the jewelry, point out the needed repairs and test the stones for its authenticity.  Most appraisers will allow you to watch while they appraise the piece.  While some may be able to offer an estimate at that time, some may have to photograph the piece and continue to do research to offer an exact estimate.

Appraisals should be able to take the following into account: the date of the appraisal, the current retail prices, the brand name, serial numbers, model numbers, manufacture, the karatage, metal being used, the number of diamonds and/or gemstones, the condition, the signature of the appraiser, along with the appraiser’s qualifications.

Once the appraisal is done, a piece of paper will be given to give a good faith estimate of what it is potentially worth, something known as the replacement value.  This value, commonly related to insurance companies, will determine what it would cost to replace this item if it were to be stolen or come up missing.  The report will include items such as the gender, the type of item, what kind of manufacturing was done, the measurements, setting, engraving, the year it was made, and more if available.

What are the extra costs?

Out of office appraisals that require travel will generally include a fuel surcharge as well as a higher hourly rate.

If the appraiser has to represent the client in court or legal consultation is needed, these fees can be much higher as well.

Expedited reports that are needed faster than the usual turnaround time will cost extra.

Depending on the recommendation, most appraisers and/or insurance companies will ask you get it re-appraised every three years.  Talk with the appraiser or insurance company to see what’s recommended.

Tips to know says if you’re looking to get your jewelry insured, then an appraisal is highly recommended; however, if you want to sell your jewelry, then a grading report will be necessary.  A grading report will evaluate the diamond and will be carried out by a certified professional in a gemological laboratory.  The key to this report is that it will determine a market value at that time, not a “replacement” value for insurance purposes.

States won’t require a jewelry appraiser to be qualified or licensed; however, according to, there are some things to look out for such as accreditations and their background.  For example, according to the website, the appraiser should be, at a minimum, an Accredit Senior Appraiser of the American Society of Appraisers.  They should also be a Graduate Gemologist of the GIA or FGA with years of experience. goes in depth, explaining what you should ask an appraiser when considering an appraisal.

To find a qualified appraiser in your area, consider using this search engine.  With its listings, you can see membership details, how long they have been practicing, phone numbers and more.

Even with a replacement value, don’t assume your jewelry is worth this.  Most experts say you should be prepared to get 50 to 60 percent of this value on the open market.

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