Equipment Appraisal Blog | Understanding Machinery Appraisals

The Majority of Equipment Appraisals are Desktops

Posted by Equipment Appraisal Services on Wed, Dec 27, 2023 @ 07:30 AM

Machinery and Equipment Desktop Appraisals vs  On-Site

One of the most common misconceptions in the world of machinery and equipment (M&E) valuation is that desktop appraisals are not as reliable as those that include an on-site field visit. There is no difference in the credibility or supportability between the two, as long as the steps taken to obtain sufficient detailed asset data are completed properly.

The fact is that the vast majority of M&E appraisals are conducted as desktops. From my own experience, 75-85% of projects do not include a personal visual inspection of the equipment. I would bet those statistics are fairly consistent across the industry with my competitors.

There are a number of reasons why this occurs. Here are the most common:

  • Cost to the Client: On-site appraisals require additional time and expense for the appraiser to complete, which naturally dictates higher fee quotes. In some cases, it can be twice as much or more than a desktop option. Ability to Obtain Sufficient Detailed Data from the Client: Using today’s advanced technology, along with effective communications, it is much more efficient to obtain the needed information without putting undue burden on the client.
  • Low Transaction Size and/or Number of Assets Involved: It may simply not make economic sense relative to the size of a deal or if only a handful of items are involved.
  • Condition Assumptions: Appraisers typically assume normal operating conditions and wear and tear when completing appraisals unless specifically told otherwise. The majority of accredited valuation professionals are not mechanics or technicians, and can only carry out a general visual verification of the equipment when in the field.
  • Timing Constraints: Many appraisal projects are conducted over a short timeline where the client needs the work completed in a tight window. The majority of the appraiser’s focus should be on research, analysis, and report writing to meet deadlines.

Of course, there are times when a personal on-site visual inspection is necessary as part of the overall valuation effort. For example, the Small Business Administration (SBA) requires inspections to be completed when underwriting equipment financing transactions that are over a certain minimum threshold. In other cases, conducting the fieldwork may be the only option for obtaining the necessary asset detail required to complete the appraisal. It may also simply be the client’s preference that the appraiser come out and conduct the work personally.

To learn more about your best options when needing an M&E appraisal, reach out to an experienced, accredited professional who can take the time to discuss this topic further.

Tags: desktop appraisal, Machinery & Equipment Appraisals, on-site appraisal, fieldwork

Options When Selling Your Used Business Machinery and Equipment

Posted by Equipment Appraisal Services on Mon, Dec 11, 2023 @ 07:30 AM

Selling Used Equipment and Machinery

At least once a year, business owners will take stock of their current operation, while planning for the coming year, determining what changes may need to be implemented to continue on a successful track. One of these improvement areas might pertain to the sale of certain used equipment, which are now considered too old to maintain effectively or are in excess of existing production needs.

It can be challenging to take this project on alone, and fortunately, there are options you can consider that can facilitate the process. Here are a few to think about:

Sell or Trade to Your Dealer

Similar to selling your personal cars or trucks, the first place you might think of is the dealer who sold you the equipment when it was brand new. If you’re looking to replace your older assets with new models of the same manufacturer, the local dealer should provide you with trade-in options. Even if you don’t plan on buying a new machine, they may offer to purchase it outright at or near a trade-in level value. If not, they may agree to broker your used equipment through their resale networks for a reasonable commission once sold.

Listing in Online Trade Journals

There are several reputable national websites available to consider listing your used equipment with. Virtually any type of machinery or vehicle is supported by these platforms. They offer a large network of sellers the ability to list their assets with exposure to thousands of potential buyers. You can include photos, detailed specifications, asking prices, and your direct contact information with the listing. If you are not in a rush to liquidate your used equipment, you might want to consider this option as it may ultimately realize a higher resale value for a low cost.


The auction industry continues to grow every year and provides sellers with an option that is a one-stop, fully managed effort, from the marketing, resale, pickup, and delivery of your used equipment. The booming growth of online auctions, especially post-pandemic, makes this option even more attractive, as the number of potential bidders has expanded to those who cannot physically attend the sale. The auction route has more costs and risks, given the ease of the process and more immediate outcomes. You should, therefore, research and determine the best auctioneer to work with who can mitigate these concerns for you.

Tags: Equipment Auction, selling equipment, used equipment, used equipment dealers