Request an Estimate

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Submit an Item

Getting an Auction Estimate is Easy

Why Consign with Sotheby’s?

Since 1744, Sotheby’s has built a reputation for excellence based on the knowledge and scholarship of our specialists. Our areas of expertise encompass collecting categories that include great artworks, fine wine, magnificent furniture and impressive diamonds.

Working with Sotheby's you'll receive best-in-class service:

  • A seamless, end-to-end consignment experience, from your initial online submission to the final payment
  • An extensive network of global specialists with deep market knowledge across a variety of categories
  • Access to worldwide marketing offerings to promote your property in the most relevant markets
  • Dedicated sales force reaching a wide variety of bidders across the world

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How This Works

  • Preliminary estimates may be subject to change upon inspection of the item
    Sotheby's specialists will provide the most accurate auction estimate based only upon the information and images provided. Auction estimates are the price range within which Sotheby's experts believe the item will sell. These are provisional only and subject to change based on first-hand inspection. Auction estimates are not equal to an object's Fair Market Value or Open Market Value and are provided exclusively for the use of the client for the specific purpose of consigning property to Sotheby's or a subsidiary of Sotheby's and are not to be used by any other person for any other purpose.
  • We will help you sell your valuable objects with the right strategy
    If your item meets our quality standards and minimum consignment value, Sotheby's will provide auction estimates and will recommend the most effective way to sell your property -- whether in one of our live or online-only auctions, as a private sale, on Sotheby's Home (US only) or, if appropriate, with one of our trusted partners.
  • We work directly with consignors to build trusted relationships together
    In submitting your auction estimate request, you represent that you are the owner of the property that you are inquiring about, that you own the property free and clear of any claims, liens, encumbrances or interests of others and that the property can be offered freely in the international art market. If you are interested in consigning your property to Sotheby's, please be aware that you are responsible for complying with any local export or import laws.

    Please also note that Sotheby's does not authenticate objects or artworks submitted, and does not accept liability. Sotheby's gives no representation, warranty or guarantee with respect to an item's origin, provenance, attribution, condition, date, age or authenticity.

Consignment Highlights from Request an Estimate Submissions

Frequently Asked Questions

  • What is an auction estimate request?
    It is the first step in determining the value of your item and where it might be offered for sale.
  • How are estimates determined?
    A Sotheby’s specialist will compare your property to similar items recently sold at auction. We will consider important aspects including the artist or maker, country of origin, date of execution, materials used, dimensions, rarity, subject matter or type, color and apparent condition. Our specialists also have deep knowledge of the current market demand for works within our realm of expertise.
  • How long does it take to receive an estimate?
    Typically, Sotheby’s will answer an initial enquiry within 7 business days. However, we frequently require additional time to research an item or request the opinion of a particular specialist. In such special instances, an enquiry could require several weeks.
  • I submitted my request, but why didn’t I receive an estimate?
    On occasion, if a prospective consignor submits an object valued below Sotheby’s threshold for sale, or if an item is outside our realm of expertise, we might suggest a reputable local auction room or trusted partner. Often, these firms are able to offer a thoughtful valuation according to their specialized markets. Certain brands and price thresholds are not accepted by Sotheby’s. We will inform you if your property falls within these categories.
  • Is my auction estimate a final appraisal of value?
    No, it is not. Please note that all auction estimates are subject to physical examination of the item as well as changes in the art market. Estimates are not formal documents for insurance, taxes or estate valuations and cannot be used as such.
  • May I request an estimate if I’m not ready to sell my item?
    Yes, of course. However, most who request an estimate intend to consign their items with Sotheby’s.
  • What are Sotheby’s consignment terms?
    Each consignment is different and will receive individual attention. Our consignment terms and fees include commission, damage and liability fees as well as marketing costs to appropriately promote your consigned item.
  • I am an artist. May I consign my own work?
    Please do not submit a request. Sotheby’s is not an alternative to gallery representation. Please submit your portfolio to galleries that specialize in promoting living artists.

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