Inheriting Grandma’s Treasures

Blue Mikado

Blue Mikado

I enjoy doing estate appraisals because it keeps me connected to the world of antiques I was part of for the years that I owned an antique / home decor retail store. The thrill of the hunt is always exciting as any collector will tell you. Of course, now I don’t buy from these clients otherwise it could be viewed as a conflict of interest. I simply give them an idea of what the items may be worth and pass them on to dealers that I know will be interested in their wares.

Often, people are disappointed to find out that the items they have are not wildly valuable , especially if they watch the Antiques Road Show on a regular basis. If a person did not know that the 10 or so antiques they feature were handpicked out of literally the thousands that come through their doors on a weekend, they might think that almost all antiques were valuable.

Some of the information on the pieces, whether art work, dishes or furniture, should really come from the person who owned it. Many people inherit antique furniture, accessories, and collections without knowing the first thing about them. They don’t know anything about where the items were purchased, who owned or bought them, or what is special about them – the family folklore. This passing on of this information requires a strategy if you want to ensure your descendants don’t head to a pawn shop to sell the family “jewels” as soon as you’re gone.

I will be doing a two week talk on this very subject at Central Lions Senior Center in Edmonton on March 12th and 19th. Some of the points I will be talking about are as follows:

  • What makes something valuable?
  • How to determine what you have so you can do research.
  • How and where to do research on antiques.
  • What do collectors want?
  • Strategies for leaving your belongings to other people – what to do or not do.

Participants are encouraged to bring one item at each of the sessions. For more information about the many workshops they hold (including these sessions) call 780-496-7369. And… you don’t have to be a senior to attend!