Consider hiring an appraiser. Even if you're confident in your lighting retailer, it can be wise to seek a second opinion, especially if you're shelling out a lot of cash. Not only can a professional appraiser confirm the maker, period, materials and value of your lamp, but his or her written documentation is helpful for insurance records. Ask your dealer or check the American Society of Appraisers for a pro in your area.Have the wiring and circuitry checked. After you've purchased your vintage chandelier, sconces or other lighting, take it to a licensed electrician for an opinion on the soundness of the wiring. Pieces that are more than four or five decades old likely won't follow today's safety or compatibility standards, and even newer fixtures may have frayed cables or other danger spots.