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How do I go about valuing assets such as the furniture and other household items owned by a California estate?

Valuing assets is a responsibility of an executor or administrator as part of the estate administration process. Assets may exist in many forms, including real estate, cash, life insurance policies, or savings bonds. Each type of property can be valued using a specific method. While the valuation of California estate assets may be obvious in some cases, such as with cash, it can be less clear with other assets. Household furnishings are one such asset.

The following are basic rules relating to valuing assets:

  • First of all, the IRS says that all furniture should be itemized and appraised.
  • In practice, this rule is often not followed. Instead, furniture is usually grouped together and assigned a value. The value assigned is often between $2,000 -$5,000.
  • Furthermore, if the will or trust lists specific items, however, those items must be separately itemized and valued.
  • Additionally, if the household furnishings include items of high value, such as valuable antiques, these items must be separately itemized and valued.
  • Similarly, items of artistic or intrinsic value of more than $3,000 must also be itemized.
  • Lastly, collections of valuable artistic property of more than $10,000 must be itemized.

In conclusion, valuing assets is an important part of the California estate administration process. Our free guide The Insider’s Guide to California Probate and Trust Administration provides helpful information for executors, administrators, and trustees.

Contact an experienced San Diego trust lawyer today for guidance valuing estate property and administering an estate. Feel free to call our toll-free number today at (888) 443-6590 today. We are here to help you.

Administrator (noun):

The Administrator of an Estate is a legal term. This term refers to someone appointed by a Court to administer the Estate of a deceased person with no Will.

Executor (noun):

Person named in a Will as the person who will make sure that the instructions in the Will are followed. They are responsible for executing the Will, and are either appointed by the court or by the deceased person. They are responsible for taking care of a deceased person’s financial obligations. Financial obligations include disposing of property and paying bills and taxes. The executor must also make certain that the deceased last wishes are carried out according to the Will.

Asset (noun):

Assets include all the property belonging to a person or an organization.

Scott Grossman

Scott Grossman


The Grossman Law Firm, APC · 525 B Street, Suite 1500, San Diego, CA 92101 · (951) 523-8307

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