Trading Antiques & Keepsakes: What you need to know before hand
- Posted on 18th December 2017
- in antique appraisal, Antique Collection, antique dealer, antique dealers and buyers, antiques
- by Alan
Thinking about getting into the antiques trade? For some, it becomes a fun hobby that they make some money from. For others, it becomes a full-time job or becomes their job following retirement. No matter why you want to get into selling antiques & collectibles, there are a few things you should know before you jump into the world of buying, selling, and trading antiques and keepsakes.
You Won’t Get Rich Fast
If you’re looking for a side job that will let you quit your full-time job within a few months, you’re looking in the wrong place. While it’s true you may eventually reach the point where you can buy and sell antiques as your job, it won’t be overnight. While it’s true that some antique buyers do make huge sales, those are often the exception rather than the norm. For every sale you have that’s several thousand dollars, you’ll likely have many, many more that are much less.
Be Careful Specialized in High-End Items Only
Some people might think that they will simply focus only on high-end items so that every sale is at least several hundred dollars. There are a few things to be careful about here. First, expect to invest a lot more upfront in buying antiques. Many people know what their items are worth and won’t let them go for next to nothing. Also realise that high-end collectors are a fairly small niche. Most people can afford to purchase small antiques from time to time. Few, though, can afford to spend thousands every month.
Explore Your Local Antiques Scene
Do you know where the best place to sell antiques in your area is? It helps to check out the local scene so you know where you’re likely to find good deals and where you can sell the items you find. You may want to work online, but that also involves doing a little bit of research. Some people assume eBay is the play to buy and sell, but there may be other auction sites out there that are better for the specific items you’re trading.
Be Ready to Put in the Time
One fact about keepsake and antiques buyers and sellers is that they have to put in the time learning about the items they’re trading. This involves learning how to identify different styles and types of antiques. You want to know the major manufacturers, designers, and artists in the antiques niche you’re invested in. Most dealers don’t simply purchase every type of antique they come across—they specialize. You’ll likely want to do that just because it makes it easier to learn about the antiques.
You’ll also need to keep up with the market. This means learning about which antiques are selling well and which aren’t. Like any market, there will be ups and downs. Some designs or styles that are popular now may not be so popular in a few months. Keep up with the trends so you know what to buy and how to price the items you’re selling.
By following these tips, you can enter into the antiques market a little more prepared than others. That, in turn, will help you spend your money more wisely.