The Ultimate Watch Appraisal Guide

Do you need to find out how much your watch is worth? One would think that all you need to do is look the make and model up online. But that’s not the case with all watches. 

Especially nowadays, there are plenty of replicas that don’t look much different from the real thing. So it can be hard to tell the authentic from the faulty. 

In this article, we will cover the factors that affect value, and how you can start your own appraisal to know what your watch is worth. 

Keep reading to find out more about watch appraisal.

The Value Affecting Factors

When it comes to an item like a watch, there are several impacting factors that determine the finite price of said piece. And more often than not, it has nothing to do with retail prices. 

The Type of Watch

All watches are different, hence they have different values. And if one was to categorize watches by their types, such as wristwatches, pocket watches, wall watches – the valuations would be variable. 

A pocket watch could be examined on the premises of its movement and the material/quality it is in. Whereas, a wristwatch could be evaluated on just a single factor, such as the manufacturer and brand of the piece.

The Brand

Certain watches are more capable of holding their value over time, and other watches can even increase their value. Some popular brands that have higher resale value are Panerai, Breitling, Rolex, Cartier, Jaeger-LeCoultre, Patek Philippe, IWC, Piguet, etc.

The Materials

The materials that make up the sum of the final piece will determine value as well. A stainless steel watch will cost less than a watch out of platinum. If you research the market value of the metal, you can get some approximation on the cost.

The Movement

The movement of a watch is important. Usually, the more reputable the manufacture is, the better the watch will have its mechanics done. A mechanical watch with a tick is more expensive than a digital one. As they can withstand great depths and heights without issue.

The Condition

If you watch it has great movement and it’s old, that’s even better. If your watch hasn’t been serviced, the value might be diminished, however. A vintage watch kept in pristine condition will cost significantly more if it had some sort of troubles. 

If the watch is not at it’s best, consider restoration and cleaning. Be wary, if you go this route – you might bring down the value by changing the hands or straps, so communicate with the person who will be performing the repair.

How to Determine Watch Value

When it comes to determining the pricing for a watch, an appraisal is required. And considering the lucrative category of product, it can be often hard to determine the final value. 

For instance, a car is much easier to evaluate, as you can use resources such as Motor Trend, Edmunds, or Kelly Blue Book. For watches, a Specht Sheet report you can find their value. Usually reserved for dealers. However, the best way to determine value is to check the “sold” listings on eBay. Asking prices are typically inflated but you can find lots of information on eBay for free. Another paid resource is WorthPoint. They gather data from multiple online auction sites.

When you are trying to find out the cost, you have to clarify the model, the brand, the age, and a variety of other factors listed above. 

The more specific you can get, the more accurate the evaluation will be. If a watch has all of its original documentation, bill of sale, instructions, original packaging – the value can be determined quickly. If a warranty or certificate-of-origin papers have been filed, the value can be determined even more simply.

But if a watch does not have these documents, other tools must be used. You can start with a brand name, and use the most convenient search engine for you. Also, if the brand name is associated with alpha-numeric numbers, use those when you are performing your search. Those are reference numbers that can help pull-up many matches on the internet than you would think.

Some brands have sequential numbering systems that help determine the age of the watch, so that’s a good thing to look out for. But this is uncommon, and only manufacturers possess the data to match a number to a production date. 

For example, an archive extract can be gathered about a certain piece, but it can be hard to get your hands one. Unless, you are willing to pay for it, which can be done on the official site of the manufacturer. With this document in hand, you can acquire an estimated cost for this watch.

Also, be wary that brands will often place these numbers in hard to reach areas. It can be inside of the cashback, between the lugs, so on and so forth. So it’s best that you visit your local shop for an inspection so that you can proceed with your personal appraisal.

With all the information gathered, you can go through message boards, eBay, marketplaces, auctions, etc – and see if you can find some matches to the watch you are trying to sell.

Watch Appraisal Done Right

Now that you have finally come to gather the necessary information for your first watch appraisal, you can start to figure out the price of our timepiece.

Through leveraging the accessory set (receipts, markings, boxes, documents) and the watch itself, you can discover important information about the make, model, and condition of the watch.

Once you have identified a watch, you can finally answer the question of evaluation with greater precision. 

If you’re interested in a watch appraisal, get in touch with us (Crown Gold Exchange) and we will happily accommodate your needs.

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