Estate sales are a great place to find valuable antiques and collectibles, often at affordable prices. Some homeowners might not know exactly how valuable an item is, while others price vintage and antique items at rock-bottom prices to simply sell them as quickly as possible. If you are looking to add to your antique collection, consider a few helpful tips before you head out to your next estate sale.
Research the Estate Sale Ahead of Time
If you have a specific item that you are looking for, such as vintage estate jewelry, researching antique estate sales ahead of time can be beneficial. There are many online resources that will provide a synopsis of what you’ll find at the sale. This way, you’ll know which sales are worth your time and which you can pass up.
Check for a Hallmark
Many antiques, including antique jewelry and silver pieces, contain a maker’s hallmark somewhere on the piece. If you are interested in an item that is said to have been made before the 1950s, you should always check for some type of mark, such as the initials of the maker. If you have your smartphone with you, do a quick check online to look for examples of well-known antique jeweler hallmarks to see if any of them match. These resources are also helpful to see if you are getting a good price before your purchase.
Don’t Purchase a Piece with Flaws
If you notice that a piece that interests you is flawed with breaks or chips, it may not be something that can be repaired. While it might be disappointing, you should seriously consider leaving the item behind. It may not be worth your time, money, or energy to repair the item. Of course, there are always a few exceptions to the rule – a beautiful Herman Miller lounge chair that simply needs a few screws to return it to like-new condition will definitely be worth your while.
Get a Professional Opinion
In an estate sale, the best items will likely be sold quite quickly, so it might not always be feasible to take your time in making a purchase. However, if you don’t feel rushed in your decision, you may want to consult with a professional appraiser or antique dealer to get an idea on the value of an item. At Sarasota Antique Buyers, we can provide a market analysis of what an antique would sell for at an auction, which can tell you if you are getting a good deal.
Should you choose to buy an antique and then want to sell it, we are proud to offer some of the best vintage estate deals. We’ll place a bid just under our market analysis pricing, allowing you to make a profit on your antiques and return home with money in your pocket.