(the art of appraising Oriental carpets for insurance and resale)
There are five major types of collectable Oriental rugs: Persian, Caucasian, Chinese, and European (French, English).
The values of these are determined by their quality, size, age, and condition.
Quality — determined by clarity of design, richness of color and number of knots per square inch.
Size — small Oriental rugs are extremely desirable because enthusiasts can collect more of them. Room size Oriental carpets (8’ x 10’, 9’ x 12’, 14’ x 18’) are in great demand. Larger than this, the number of collectors diminish.
Age — Oriental rugs are still being hand made today. The older the Oriental carpet, the more valuable. The most sought after Oriental rugs are 19th century. This can be determined by design and condition. Some are even dated.
Condition — all antique Oriental rugs have some wear. Valuable rugs can be restored and brought back to their original value. The most ideal Oriental carpets are those placed in a room that received little traffic. If borders and edges are frayed, this greatly affects value.
Insurance Rug Appraisals — Oriental carpets are the first thing damaged by fire, smoke and water. Firemen unmercifully trample them as they drag their hoses through the home. Not to have valuable Oriental carpets scheduled and insured for damage is foolish. Even insects destroy thousands of dollars in Oriental rugs yearly.
Selling Oriental Carpets — Oriental rug dealers have the worst reputation in the art/antique industry. Their deceit, rudeness and misrepresentation are legendary. Without a proper Oriental carpet appraisal you are at their mercy. To even just shop your Oriental rug from dealer to dealer is often fruitless. All you end up with is selling your Oriental carpet to the best of the “thieves”. You must find out exactly what you own, exactly what it is worth and where the market is.
The Various Oriental Rug Markets — some Oriental carpets sell better on the east coast, others in the middle west. Certain Chinese rugs bring the best prices in California. Oriental silk rugs do well in the south, but not wool carpets. Very old rugs should go to London or Germany. French rugs (Aubusson) do better in America than in France. Nothing sells well in the west and southwest. The rarest Caucasian rugs bring the best prices in Italy and London. Art Deco rugs only sell in Paris. Your local Oriental rug dealer or auction house is often not the best answer.
Buying Oriental Rugs — Oriental carpet dealer’s mark up are often enormous. Three to five times cost is not unusual. There are legitimate Oriental rug dealers that act as a broker for a modest fee.
Rug Donations – let us provide you with a formal written appraisal guaranteed acceptable by the IRS. We can often find museums to donate your rug. We specialize in handling all the steps of this process from the IRS forms to assistance in shipping. All costs are tax deductible.
The Secret of Oriental Rugs — Oriental carpets are probably the least understood art/antique item. Unfortunately the dealers like to keep it that way. Let us act as your personal tutor to this mysterious hidden world. We have over 40 years experience assisting collectors just like you. We can properly identify your Oriental rug, determine its age, not only tell you exactly what it is worth, but where to buy or sell it for a FAIR PRICE.
Appraisals from Photographs — the best Oriental carpet appraisals are done from personal inspection. Condition, and knot count is more easily determined. If this is impractical, we can work from photographs. Two or three shots and a close-up are usually sufficient.
Minimum fee is $125.00 each. Group Rates are available.
Risk Free Consultation — concerned that your rug may not be worth appraising? Just send to us a photo of it, and we’ll contact you. If it is not a collectable Oriental carpet, there is no charge.