Equipment Appraisal Blog | Understanding Machinery Appraisals

Using Construction Machinery Valuation to Grow Your Company

Posted by Equipment Appraisal Services on Tue, Oct 30, 2018 @ 12:19 PM


Tradesmen International's recent study of the economy and construction industry projects that the construction sector will be one of the fastest growing areas of the economy over the next few years. Where is your contracting firm positioned to take advantage of this growth? Using a machinery valuation as an asset to leverage your company's value may help you get the best growth from the current boom cycle before we hit the next downturn. Here's a quick look at several ways you can use an equipment valuation to improve your company's growth and solidify your position in the market.

Using Construction Machinery Valuation to Grow Your Company

  • Does your equipment still have value, or is it just about shot? Because equipment appraisers spend all day looking at machinery, they have a pretty good idea of what regular wear and tear looks like compared to failing parts that may cause expensive repairs down the road. Use the information to decide whether to repair or replace your aging equipment instead of taking a wild guess at its longevity.
  • Can you afford a lot of down time? By knowing what condition your equipment is in allows you to replace it when it makes sense, rather than waiting for it to break down and wreak havoc on your job site. Use the appraisal information to make planned replacements instead of having to make an emergency purchase at the wrong time. This allows you to make the purchase when you're ready.
  • Do you really need that much insurance coverage or are you too low? It's hard to decide how much coverage you need on your equipment. When you have an equipment appraiser take a solid look at and value your machinery, it becomes much easier to know how much coverage to retain, especially since an appraisal report from a certified appraiser will hold up well under scrutiny by your insurance carrier.
  • Are you ready to get that loan from the bank? The economy is still a little shaky, and financial institutions aren't as willing to put out loans as they were before the recession. Being able to document your equipment's value allows you to provide solid proof of your assets as well as providing a basis for collateral if it's needed for your business loan.
  • Are your taxes in line with your equipment's real value? Property taxes are a pain, but if you've noticed a strong upswing in your taxes without a related asset purchase, you may need to fight the appraisal. By having the documentation you need, you can spend less time fighting your appraisal and more time investing the money saved in the process.
  • What will that old equipment really sell for in the long run? When it's time to sell that old skid steer, backhoe or loader, are you just guessing what the market will bear or are you basing your asking price on real-world figures? Having an appraisal means you have a solid basis to back up your end of the negotiations.

By taking the time to have a machinery valuation performed on your construction equipment, you can leverage that information to get the best possible growth out of the current upswing. Consider each of these points carefully, then hire a certified equipment appraiser to get a high-quality report you can use for a wide range of purposes. 

Tags: machinery valuation

What You Need to Know About Fair Market Value in Machinery Appraisal

Posted by Equipment Appraisal Services on Tue, Oct 23, 2018 @ 02:24 PM

The term "fair market value" often comes up when discussing machinery appraisals. Do you know what it really means and why it's important? Find out how an appraiser determines the fair market value of a piece of equipment and why this matters for your company's bottom line. 

Understanding Fair Market Value in Machinery Appraisal

Fair market value represents how much a neutral buyer (i.e. someone who isn't personally invested in your company and who might overpay for that item) would be willing to pay for your equipment, whether you're talking about a bakery oven or a set of bicycle repair tools. 

Fair market value reflects how much the buyer would pay assuming there were no extenuating circumstances. A caterer would pay a lot more for that bakery oven if their oven failed the day before a large wedding than they would pay if time was not pressing. This valuation also assumes that all parties have equal knowledge -- that the seller is not attempting to hide any flaws in the equipment. 

Fair market value may affect the price of machinery installation or transit, notably with large items that must be installed before use.

Why Fair Market Value Matters

Assets are always in a state of flux in businesses: A new piece of equipment comes in and something old goes out. 

Maybe you decide to donate the old equipment, so you can take the tax write-off for dropping off that bakery oven at a soup kitchen that needs an oven. While this is a fine impulse, there is no way that you can write off the equipment on your taxes accurately without knowing the accurate valuation. 

Perhaps you decide to get some return on your investment by selling the old piece of equipment. If you're in a generous mood, you might even get that oven cleaned and serviced, so you're selling something that is clean, ready to use, and reads temperature accurately. What if you found out that your old oven had a very low value and you would not recoup what you spent getting the oven serviced? 

Alternately, maybe you have a favorite tool -- like those bike tools that fit your hand really well. What if there was a break-in at your bike shop and those tools disappeared? Or a fire that destroyed all of your equipment? How could you make an insurance claim not knowing the value of what you lost? 

As these examples illustrate, you can only realize the value of an asset when you know what it's worth -- which is subject to change in time. Without an appraisal of fair market value, you can't realize your equipment's value whether you're looking to sell it, donate it, or replace it. 

You may believe that you can look up the price of equipment online or use the tax documents, which take depreciation into effect. While this is a valid impulse, you can't compare your used equipment to a depreciation table or to the cost to replace the item new. It all depends on how often (and how well) you use the machinery in your work. An oven that's taken care of and serviced annually has a higher value than one that is never cleaned and never serviced. 

If you haven't had your equipment appraised recently, now is the time to get your business's critical assets valued. Find a machinery appraiser that has experience valuing equipment commonly used in your industry, whether it's culinary, sporting goods, or anything else. 

Tags: machinery appraisal, fair market value

What's involved in the process of becoming a certified equipment appraiser?

Posted by Equipment Appraisal Services on Tue, Oct 16, 2018 @ 10:03 AM

When you're considering having a machinery valuation done, have you ever considered what makes a certified equipment appraiser qualified to determine the value of your equipment? It's a bit of a process, but we thought we'd share what our appraisers go through before they're considered ready to look at your machinery and come up with a solid value that will hold up under strong scrutiny. Here's what's involved in becoming a certified machinery appraiser.

What's involved in the process of becoming a certified equipment appraiser?

There are several different appraisal associations, each of which often has their own appraiser certification process. The ASA focuses on pure appraisal science and is the premier appraisal society in the US. The ASA accreditation is one that lenders and attorneys look for as the bar is high to obtain compared to some of the others.

Almost every certification process entails a combination of education and experience. To become certified, an appraiser needs to have a certain amount of time in training, whether in a curriculum of specific courses or a range of continuing education classes to make up their education. Methodologies need to be standardized based on historical performance to ensure that they hold up well to strong scrutiny, whether that's in a court of law, a tax agency, a financial institution or an insurance claim. 

Experience is typically developed under a senior appraiser who can show a new appraiser how to approach the valuation process and some of the variables they may encounter in the field. This experience typically lasts several years, providing the appraiser with the opportunity to pick up experience with a wide range of machinery, exposing them to a number of different aspects of the process. This will also give them the opportunity to see how valuation works in practice, depending on the specific need for the appraisal and why it's needed.

Once the candidate has acquired the necessary education and experience to complete their program's requirements, they'll need to pass an in-depth exam that provides the association with a solid idea of the candidate's abilities. This may include a range of question types, from basic multiple choice or answer-selection formats to requirements to explain in detail how to appraise a specific item and why the appraiser came up with that specific value in that particular situation. Once they've passed the test, they're able to receive their certification and begin practice as a certified equipment appraisal specialist.

Now that you know what's involved in the process of becoming a certified equipment appraiser, you'll have a better grasp of what your appraiser has gone through to be able to provide you or your business with a solid idea of what your equipment is currently worth. The methodologies used in developing a certified appraisal report provides you with a solid basis for value, whether you need the appraisal for a sale, insurance, legal purposes, taxes or financing for your company.

Tags: certified equipment appraiser

What exactly is machinery valuation and how does it benefit your business?

Posted by Equipment Appraisal Services on Tue, Oct 09, 2018 @ 04:48 PM

After you've been in business a bit, you may have heard the term machinery valuation tossed about on occasion. If you've wondered what it's all about and why you might want to consider getting one on your own business, you're not alone. Here's a quick look at what exactly an equipment appraisal is and the many benefits it can bring to your company.

What exactly is machinery valuation and how does it benefit your business?

Most people have been through or are somewhat familiar with the process of having a home appraised or a vehicle valued when considering selling it or trading it in. Someone who seems to maybe know what they're doing will look it over, hem and haw and finally tell you what it's worth. This process tends to be a good bit more reliable in real estate than cars or trucks, but either process can be up to some level of interpretation. 

Now imagine this process but with machinery. You may be dealing with an equipment dealer, but much like the process of trading in a car, you'll often end up getting the value they want you to get - high if they need sales or low if they don't want to deal with selling your used equipment. Fortunately, there's a much better way to have your equipment assets appraised - by using a certified equipment appraiser.

When equipment appraisers work through the process, they are an independent third party. They don't have any reason to push for you to trade now or keep your current equipment. They simply analyze what is. Instead of worrying about what their commission will be, they can get into the nuts and bolts of your equipment, the industry and what it's actually worth. They use this information to create an equipment valuation report that provides you with a number of benefits:

  • The appraisal itself tells you something about the condition of the machinery. Is there a particular part that you missed a recall on? Perhaps there's some wear that isn't that interesting in and of itself, but it could point to wear and failures elsewhere in the machine that could lead to expensive repairs.
  • Because appraisers are familiar with your industry, they may know that though the region you're located in is currently in a slump, the market in another area may still be rather hot. They may even have some connections there, giving you the opportunity to make a profit off of machinery that would otherwise sit around or lose value.
  • Certified appraisers use tested methodologies to calculate the value of your equipment. Because these methodologies have been around for a long time, they've been tested in court, tax agencies, financial institutions and insurance companies. That means they stand up to strong scrutiny, allowing you to save time when dealing with these organizations.

Now that you know what a machinery valuation is and the many benefits of having one performed on your equipment assets, it's time to act. By having an equipment appraisal performed on your assets now, you can help avoid a lot of hassles no matter what life throws your way. Make sure you work with a certified equipment appraiser to ensure that they're familiar with the many factors that can come into play when you have your machinery appraised.

Tags: machinery valuation

What's involved and how do you win in oil & gas equipment property tax appeals?

Posted by Equipment Appraisal Services on Tue, Oct 02, 2018 @ 08:43 AM

When you receive a bad property tax assessment, how do you fight it? The best way to win when you're dealing with oil & gas equipment property tax appeals is by knowing what's involved in the process and the best steps to take to get through the process as quickly and effectively as possible. Here's a quick look at what's involved in a property tax appeal and the steps to take to win your appeal without a lot of extra work.

What's involved and how do you win in oil & gas equipment property tax appeals?

Though getting a bad property tax assessment is a terribly unpleasant surprise, you do have options available to fight the assessment. Virtually every tax agency includes an appeal process. Many businesses have been through the process and come out well on the other end, but only by knowing how the process works.

To start, look at the documentation that was provided by the tax agency in question. It should include information about your rights and where to look to learn about the process. Start with that information to determine what your available timeline will be through the process. The information will also tell you what your rights are.

The process may also require that the assessor follow certain procedures, such as the use of a standardized valuation guide and that the tax codes for that agency be applied uniformly to all taxpayers. Do you have the ability to request the documentation of how your equipment was assessed? Can you request other records from the tax agency's office? By knowing what your rights are, you can better defend them.

The next step is to prove the actual value of your equipment. The best way is through an equipment valuation. The value in your depreciation schedule may not reflect equipment that has been heavily used. If you depend on your equipment dealer, you'll get the value they think you're looking for. There are any number of other ways to come up with a value for your equipment, but it's not necessarily going to be an accurate value.

When an equipment appraisal is performed, it looks at what the equipment's value actually is. They look at the overall condition of the equipment, providing you with not only the value based on those aspects, but also prospective issues that need to be handled and the expected overall lifespan. They take into account the current market conditions, whether a hot market is raising the value of your equipment or a slow one is lowering it. They can provide you with the most accurate value that will hold up well in tax appeals.

Getting a bad property tax assessment is stressful, but knowing what's involved in fighting it so that you can win oil & gas equipment property tax appeals makes it much easier to get through the entire process successfully. If you decide to get an appraisal of your machinery, make sure that you work with a certified equipment appraiser. The certification process uses standardized methodologies that have been tested countless times in legal, financial, insurance and tax circles, ensuring that they'll hold up against strong scrutiny. Ask whether the appraiser you're hiring has been through the certification process.

Tags: oil & gas equipment property tax appeals