The most common situations in which you will need an equipment appraisal are mergers and acquisitions, partnership dissolutions, business valuations, property taxes, bankruptcy, insurance, financing and SBA lending, and buy/sell agreements. Really, any situation in which the value of your business assets plays a part.
So that covered the question of when you need an equipment appraisal. Now on to what to expect during one.
An equipment appraisal really has no fixed cost. If it is a simple appraisal of only a few basic pieces of equipment, the price is going to be low. A more complex operation involving many pieces of equipment, or several advanced pieces of equipment, is going to be pricier.
Just like with the cost of an appraisal, the time too varies. More equipment will take longer to appraise, as will more advanced equipment. If the equipment is uncommon or rare and it is difficult to find comparable items, it will also take more time to do the appraisal.
During the process, the appraiser will view the equipment and document any relevant information (unless you are doing a desktop appraisal). The appraiser will ask about the make, model, and serial number of the equipment, as well as its condition and whether it has been properly maintained. Maintenance records and information on any special features or upgrades are also needed for the appraisal, if they are present. A good appraiser will let a client know ahead of time what information they’ll need access to, so that the client can have it available during the appraisal.