Your grandmother's hand-me-down dining set, lamp, or couch might represent a small fortune -- but many unwitting benefactors simply throw out their "old junk" or post it on local sales websites for next to nothing. Don't be one of them! Here are three pieces of advice for helping you get maximum value for those pieces of furniture by selling them to professional antique dealers.
1. Different Dealers Specialize in Different Periods
Just as doctors may focus on specific areas of the body or attorneys on specific areas of law, furniture dealers who buy and sell older pieces may specialize in different periods or styles such as:
You're likely to get the best price for your furniture if you take it to a dealer that trades heavily in its specific style. If you're not sure of the style or period, it's time to talk to an appraiser.
2. It Pays to Appraise
Some furniture sellers may balk at the idea of spending extra money for a professional appraisal of a piece that might not be worth much more than the cost of the appraisal itself. If you're pretty sure that the piece is genuine valuable, however, shouldn't you have that fact verified by an objective third party before getting bids from antique furniture buyers? Here are some tips to keep in mind:
3. Go Mobile for More Success
Your location will almost certainly have an impact on your ability to sell your piece of furniture quickly and for a good price. For better or worse, you're likely to get more competitive offers if you live in a major metropolitan area that boasts a healthy customer base for such luxury items. These major dealers may sell pieces to interested buyers from around the world, enabling them to offer higher prices than a local dealer who only serves the immediate community.
If you know you've got something valuable and you're worried that you won't get a fair price for in your own little town, it may be well worth the effort to plan some road trips to major cities in your area. If loading and carrying a heavy item seems impractical, take several detailed photographs and take them with you instead so you can at least get some rough bids.
Learn more and get some professional advice on your furniture's style and value, and be willing to go where the money is, if you want to see a tidy sum for your antique or vintage furniture. You may discover that what's old is new again -- once you've bought some handsome new furniture with the money from your sale!Share