History

The history of how Fine Estates and Antiques, Inc., also known as “Fine Estates”, became what it is today, is essentially a story of a hobby becoming a passion becoming a vocation. Founder and CEO Jim Friend had a vision for an antique business with a gallery that he could have as his own, as he particularly had a vivid interest in 17th-20th century antiques. In the mid 90's, this vision came to fruition in the form of a store called “Estate Gallery”, where pieces from private estates were purchased and then sold in this gallery.

As he pursued this young business, he began to learn the type of market that he was up against. With his family, he looked into the auction world, antique exhibitions, and dealer interaction which covered basically all types of the retail and wholesale genre. Adapting to local market conditions and an ever-changing antique business, the need for a different location with more exposure came in the late 90's; “Estate Gallery” moved from the well-known 32nd Street and Lincoln Drive location above the Biltmore area, to a larger Scottsdale Road and Thomas gallery-showroom.

This experience in retail called for an evolution in how to go about the future estate service. The family sold the gallery to the notable “Barrett-Jackson” auction family, and decided to seek out the auction side of the business full-time. Taking over a small, well-known local estate auction in Scottsdale proved to be a quick success, grabbing the attention of a larger, well-known Canadian house desiring to merge the two into an all-encompassing service.  Before the 3rd anniversary of the auction company, came an unexpected, but prosperous sale of the auction business, opening the door for what seemingly was always meant to be an Antique and Personal Property service.

Mr. Friend obtained his valuable “GPPA” (graduate personal property appraiser) license, “NAA” (National Auctioneer’s association) auctioneer’s license, followed by the a unique “CES” (certified estate specialist) certification to further his knowledge of how to correctly handle estates. Through all the transition, the growing need for an all-encompassing personal property estate sale business was becoming more evident.

Evidence for competent, integrous appraisal practice was a glaring component, and Mr.Friend found the solution in more education with “USPAP” (Uniform Standard Professional Appraiser’s Practice) compliancy. This additional work, gave him the ability to offer written USPAP-compliant appraisals of personal property to all estate representatives, trustees, lawyers, home owners, banks, and fiduciaries.

With the door of options for estate service opening wider, the idea for the “Fine Estates and Antiques, Inc.” of today was born. The desire to help people correctly and efficiently appraise, evaluate, and/or sell their personal property was made possible through this company, opening the doors just prior to year 2000. With already having years of estate work under his belt, the many other areas of service began, including: special collections, trusts, assisted living transitions, probate, divorce, down-sizing, foreclosure, short-sales, and hoarding are the range of focus for Fine Estates' services. Later, as the business grew, clientele including real estate agents, professional organizers, antique dealers, bankers, lawyers, home owners, assisted living companies, and individuals all have become the recipients of service.

Looking forward, Jim Friend continues to look for ways to grow his company, extend his resources, and ultimately to help people deal with their personal property in the best way possible. The service has been, and will continue to be built on a personal, referral-based network of relationships developed over a period of time.

Designations / Affiliations

Graduate Personal Property Appraiser (GPPA)
Certified Estate Specialist (CES)
Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice (USPAP)
Fully licensed and insured in the State of Arizona
Coldwell Banker
iSearch Decor Home Services
Keller Williams Realty
Better Business Bureau Member