Frequently Asked Questions

Common aircraft appraisal questions that an help.

The appraisal process typically involves a physical inspection of the aircraft, a review of maintenance and flight logs, and an analysis of market trends. The appraiser may also consider comparable sales of similar aircraft.

Several factors can affect an aircraft’s value, including its make, model, age, maintenance history, logbook completeness, avionics, engine hours, interior and exterior condition, and market demand.

While there’s no set rule, it’s advisable to get an appraisal whenever there’s a significant change in the aircraft’s condition, ownership, or market conditions. A periodic appraisal every 2-3 years can also help owners maintain a current understanding of their aircraft’s value.

An appraisal determines the value of an aircraft, while a pre-purchase inspection assesses its condition and airworthiness. Though different, both are crucial when buying or selling an aircraft.

Yes, insurance companies often require an appraisal to accurately insure an aircraft. A higher appraised value could lead to higher premiums, but it ensures that the coverage reflects the aircraft’s true replacement cost.

Appraisals are essential for several reasons, including buying or selling an aircraft, financing or refinancing, insurance purposes, and legal issues such as divorce settlements or estate evaluations.

Appraisers evaluate modifications and upgrades based on their contribution to the aircraft’s performance, safety, and compliance with current aviation regulations. The value added by upgrades such as avionics improvements, interior refurbishments, or performance kits is assessed in the context of market demand for those features and their impact on the aircraft’s overall marketability.

Aircraft with a history of damage, especially significant incidents, generally have lower values than those without. An appraiser will closely examine repair documentation to ensure repairs were completed to industry standards, which can mitigate some of the value loss. The nature of the damage, quality of repairs, and any ongoing issues directly affect the appraisal outcome.

Yes, an experienced appraiser can provide both values upon request. The fair market value represents the aircraft’s worth under normal market conditions, while the liquidation value indicates the potential sale price under forced or urgent circumstances. These values can be significantly different and serve different purposes, such as financial planning, loan collateral assessment, or corporate asset liquidation strategies.

International regulations can significantly impact an aircraft’s appraisal, particularly if it’s marketed to buyers in different countries. Compliance with international safety standards, noise regulations, and emissions standards can enhance an aircraft’s value. Conversely, non-compliance can restrict its operability in certain regions, potentially reducing its market value.

In volatile markets, aircraft values can fluctuate widely due to factors like fuel prices, regulatory changes, and shifts in demand. In such conditions, it’s advisable to update appraisals annually or even semi-annually. Frequent updates ensure that owners and stakeholders have accurate, current data for making informed decisions regarding sales, purchases, insurance, and financing.

Aircraft Appraisal Frequently Asked Questions


What should I ask when looking for an appraiser?

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What credentials do you hold for aircraft appraisal?

Outside of aircraft appraisal, how often are you involved in aircraft sale transactions?

Are your appraisal reports compliant with the USPAP standards?

How accurate have you been in the past?

Did the aircraft usually sell for the price you indicated during your appraisal?

Benefits of the CAAA

Using the CAAA means tapping into trusted and experienced leaders in aircraft appraisals delivered for you.

  • Only aircraft appraisals is our business

  • You can’t simply join and become an appraiser

  • Verified experience and background in this industry

  • Human experts that involve human analysis

  • There has never been a dispute of the Fair Market Value

  • Factor things not covered in VREF, bluebook & software

Other Appraisal Agencies

  • Others appraise real estate, machinery, and aircraft

  • Allow anyone to just “join” and become an appraiser

  • No experience in aviation or severely limited

  • Rely on software to tell them what aircraft value is

  • Get challenged and have to reappraise at times

  • Do not factor other variables that affect value

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