Many households have an antique or two stashed away. While your grandmother might swear that her precious china once belonged to the royal family, and there may be lots of lore about how your family came to possess the dusty grandfather clock in the attic, it’s hard to verify these claims or know if your item now has worth. Before bringing your heirlooms to the antique shop to be appraised, learn what might impact their value so you know what to expect.
A Guide to Assessing Quality of Antiques
The antique’s condition is usually the most significant factor in its value. Light wear and tear and discoloration are acceptable. They may even be an indicator of authenticity, enhancing the appeal of your item. However, missing parts and severe damage may bring down the value or make it difficult to find a buyer.
If there's a limited supply of an item, the demand goes up accordingly. In some cases, even items in poor condition can still fetch a large sum if they are exceedingly rare. This is especially true for collectibles and limited-edition items.
An item's history and authenticity also affect its value to a collector. The right provenance could transform even something seemingly ordinary like a tin cup or an old rifle into something of great importance. Items with vintage trademarks, proof of time and place they were made, or an accompanying photograph or historical document help establish authenticity.
While you may be able to guess the value of your item based on the above factors or checking sale listings of similar items, the only way to know its worth for certain is by having it professionally appraised. After that, if you choose to sell the item, have a dealer handle matters for you. Dealers know how to effectively display and promote your item and are adept at highlighting all its rare features. While they’ll receive a commission for their work, their sales experience allows them to fetch significantly higher prices when selling your antiques.
Whether you’re thinking about selling your heirloom or looking to add to your collection of antique pieces, trust Mike Deming Antiques in Rochester, NY. This experienced, knowledgeable, and renowned antique dealer buys and sells a variety of fine items from sterling silver flatware and historical coins to vintage books and antique furniture. He makes home visits for your convenience. Call his shop at (585) 244-1999 or fill out a form online to start your appraisal.