09 Jul Buying Antiques
The buying of antiques is easier than ever thanks the multitude of ways that items such as antique furniture, Persian rugs, heirlooms, and even poison ring products can be purchased. The range of options starts with the traditional classified ads in the newspaper to online internet auctions, antique shops, dealers, and more. In fact, the multitude of ways you can purchase antiques presents a challenge to those who are looking for the best deals.
It is important for anyone who is purchasing items with an eye towards their future value to know what they want and the potential that an antique has in terms of its value. While most countries have antiques for sale, the United Kingdom may be one of the best locations in the world. This is because of the rich history of the UK that includes conquests, trade, invention, and the intense interest its citizens have in the past. It does seem that there is an antique shop on almost every corner in the country, which is why those who purchase antiques follow a simple rule.
Buy What You Like
In other words, purchase what you can comfortably afford and do not worry too much if you think you have overpaid for the product. A good antique has a way of growing in value over time. Plus, many items from the past are built to last unlike their modern counterparts. While it is true that many people start purchasing antiques because they can sell them in the future for a higher price. For the most part the value of antiques grows at a slow pace. There are reasons for this, but for the most part the price of antiques will depend on the demand. Even a rare antique may not be all that valuable if the demand is not that great.
Instead, your focus should be on what you like and what works in your home. If you see an item that has genuine appeal and the price fits your budget, then by all means go ahead and make the purchase. By purchasing what appeals to you, it is far easier to live with the item in the months and years to follow. Imagine instead purchasing an antique that has no appeal to you. Imagine it sitting on a shelf, your floor, or even in your storage room year after year. It’s value does not rise, so it is not worth selling again at least for the foreseeable future. All it does is take up valuable space in your home. When you consider the time, effort, and money put into purchasing antiques, if they have no personal appeal to you, then it is not worth the purchase.
However, you should not fully overlook the inherent value of an antique and its possible price in the future. What follows are some tips that will help you make the best-informed purchases when shopping for antiques.
Tips for Purchasing Antiques
Knowing the tips and insights into buying antiques means you can get what you want at a price that best suits your budget. Here are a few tips that will help you get the most out of your purchases.
Know the Rules: There are rules and regulations that govern antique shops much like standard retail stores. It helps to know the local and state rules and regulations before you shop around. By knowing the rules, you can avoid unwanted incidents or misunderstandings from occurring.
Look for Memberships: There are antique dealer associations that work in a similar manner to business associations or memberships. An antique shop that is part of one or more associations, especially for quite some time, provides a little peace of mind when you shop in that location. It generally means that they are serious about being antique dealers or sellers. And it becomes part of their overall reputation.
Reputation: While most antique shops have a good reputation, it pays to check them out online. Look for independent review sites that carry customer comments. While even the best antique stores may have a few negative reviews, you should look for patterns that show their true nature.
Hold the Item: When browsing through an antique store, be sure to pick up and examine the item that catches your interest. It helps you get a better perspective on the item when you are holding it in your hands. In addition, carry a magnifying glass with you to get a close look. Keep an eye out for any flaws, chips, or other damage that may be on the item itself.
Look for Odd Items: In other words, most shops and stores will have antiques of a similar nature. But there may be something that is out of place. Such as a poison ring in a shop that mostly sells antique furniture. Or Persian rugs in a place that mostly sells antique jewelry.
If you see something out of place, chances are you may get a bargain price for it. This is usually because the item is not attractive to the majority of customers who come into the shop and has probably been sitting there for some time. Or it was purchased as part of a collection. Either way, if you are looking for a good deal, the oddball item is a good place to start.
Damage and Restoration: The first two questions about any antique no matter what you see is whether it has been damaged or restored. Either affects its overall value, so you’ll want to ask the owner before making a purchase. Keep in mind that restoration such as adding a new coat of stain or varnish on wood furniture may lower the value considerably. You want antiques to be in their original condition if at all possible.
Be Yourself: You may sound important if you are posing as a trade buyer, but the truth is that you lose your consumer protections when lying about your true status. Customers are protected in ways that a trade buyer is not. So, do not pretend to be anything other than what you are.
Ask for a Discount: While haggling is not all that common in some countries, you can use it to your advantage when shopping for a particular antique. There are some stores that will have a code on each item which indicates how low they will go in selling the antique. However, keep in mind that some codes may mean how much a product can be reduced in price while others will indicate the lowest price that they will sell the item. That is two different things, so keep that in mind when you are shopping.
When in doubt, start by asking if they will reduce the price by 10%. That’s a percentage which is easy to calculate and can save you a considerable amount. If you suspect that they may go lower than that, then try for 20%. Just remember that they are not going to give the item away.
Hold Back on the Cash: Once you get the price you are looking for, get out the checkbook or credit card and then ask if they offer an additional discount for cash. This means showing no indication that you are willing to pay in cash until you get a good price. You can always ask for a further discount by paying in cash later and if you get it, great. If not, pay with your credit card as that provides additional protection in case the item is not what it is promised to be.
Keep That Receipt: Whether you pay by check, card, or cash, be sure to keep that receipt. Also be sure that the receipt lists the following items.
– Type of Item
– Was it Damaged or Restored?
This provides important protection for you and the shop owner. By having the conditions listed on the receipt, it becomes an agreement about the item itself. This can really help if you find a reason to return it.
Most importantly, you should purchase antiques because you enjoy having them around your home. While it is possible to make some money collecting valuable antiques at a bargain price and selling them on the market for a tidy profit, for the most part the items you purchase will be a part of your home for some time to come.
This means that you should set a budget that you are comfortable with keeping, heading out to the different antiques shops, and having a good time in seeing what is available. You will want to be on the lookout for the oddball items that does not belong in the shop, but otherwise it helps to have a specific item in mind when you are looking for an antique.
Whether you are looking for a poison ring, Persian rugs, tables, chairs, desks, heirlooms, or any antique item, it pays to know what you want to get the best deal. By taking the time to do a little research, you can make your antique purchases pay off in the future.