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Jun 01, 2019

Want to Sell Antiques?

You might have been cleaning out a relatives storage unit and come across several items that you realize might be worth something. Or maybe you stumbled across a garage sale and found some items that would sell for a lot of money to the right person. But how do you sell antiques if you don’t know the first thing about them? Here are some tips to help you make sure you are getting the best price for your antique.

How to Spot an Antique
At first glance, many items may just look like old junk. But what you need to look for first is markings. Many things that are handmade or vintage will have a signature by the manufacturer or the artist. From there, it might be easy with a quick google search to see how much it is worth. Another thing to look for is the material that it is made with. Copper, silver, gold, porcelain, and glass are built to last, unlike plastic, so it might give you a good idea if something was expensive when it was made and if it will be more expensive now. But your best bet is to take it into your local antique dealer shop to see if it is authentic. It would be better for you to keep items that you might believe are antiques and have them not be than to accidentally throw out a valuable piece.

How to Price an Antique
Once you are sure that what you have is the real deal and not a knock-off, knowing what to price it might be difficult at first. Depending on what item you have, it might be worth it to invest in a professional appraiser. They can charge anywhere from $200 to $400 an hour, but if you believe that the item you have might be worth thousands, this will soon become pocket change if you sell it to the right buyer. You can even check live auction sites like eBay to see what similar objects are selling for or online discussion forums. Do your research because you don’t want to accidentally undervalue or overvalue your object.

How to Sell an Antique
There are many routes that you can take to sell an antique, it just depends on how long you are willing to wait for the sale. If you want fast cash, you can take it to a pawn shop or antique shop, but they will most likely buy it for less than the market value. You can take it to a consignment store, but they take a percentage of the sale off the top. The benefit of selling it to these shops is that you get to avoid the hassle and shipping of live auction sites, but you will make less than if you sold it online. The second option is to list it online on websites like craigslist, eBay or even more niche sites like Ruby Lane. Most people suggest selling antiques on eBay because of the ability to let people auction for items can get you a better price than if you just sold it for a flat rate. Just know that eBay charges 10% of any sale you make, and shipping can be difficult if it is a large item. The last option is to take it to a live auction in your area, but this might not be available to everyone. Live auctions give you access to high spenders but they will take a lot off for commission. If you have a very valuable piece like a painting, a live auction house will be the best option for you.

Finding and selling antiques can be difficult, but if you happen to inherit some, it will be well worth the time to sell them properly. Their value will continue to increase the older they are, so you might even feel inclined to hold onto them for a while longer. There is a reason that most professional antiquers live by the motto “one mans trash is another man’s treasure.”

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