March '21

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60 THE SHOP MARCH 2021 vehicle can also be a plus. Cars and trucks that are still in the possession of the original owner(s) often bring higher prices. COMPARE & CONTRAST Another important element of a well-done appraisal is a list of comparable vehicles and the prices that were paid or listed for them at auctions or through price guides, classified ads or actual documented sales. An online source called ConceptCarz. com provides a summary of auction prices paid for many models over more than a decade. Auction prices can also be found on the websites of auction houses such as MECUM Auctions, Barrett-Jackson and RM Classics. Price guides include the aforementioned Collector Car Prices book, the online NADA values, the Hagerty Insurance online valu- ation system and the Kelly Blue Book value guide. Hemmings online classifieds also provide an idea of private party and dealer asking prices. Documented sales are usually by word-of-mouth. One way to separate a good appraisal from a bad one is by the physical size of the report. A body shop-style appraisal is usually a one-page pre-printed sheet with boxes to check regarding the conditions of various items. A professional appraisal, meanwhile, will be a multi-page booklet that includes photos of the appraised vehicle and all of the information discussed above, from authenticity to comparable vehicle sales. OFFERING APPRAISALS How much could your shop earn on vehicle appraisals? Appraisal prices vary. I have seen one-page remote appraisals offered for $50. This was done on a send-a- picture-of-your-car basis, with the appraiser checking off boxes on a pre-printed sheet without seeing the vehicle in person. Well-done, professional, in-person appraisals, meanwhile, likely run between $200 and $1,500, depending upon a variety of factors including credentialing costs and travel expenses. If you want to offer a ser- vice to local car enthusiasts who bring their vehicles to your shop, your prices could start in the $200-$500 range. If you work with outside appraisers, you can ask for a percentage of the fee that they charge. There are several advantages to this type Offering Vehicle Appraisals Options and accessories contribute to the value of a vehicle. A wood-grained steering wheel once offered for muscle cars can add $1,000 or more. Engine options such as this ram induction manifold on a 1961 Plymouth can also add a lot to the value of a collector vehicle. Another area to appraise is the upholstery and interior trim. For ultimate value, the trim should be in nice condition and feature authentic fabrics.

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