An auction is the process of buying and selling an item by offering it up for bid, taking bids, and then selling the item to the highest bidder. This method of buying and selling can be traced as far back as 500 B.C. In economic theory, an auction is a method for determining the value of a commodity that has an undetermined or variable price.
Watch auctions are a trend in themselves. Through the ages, antique, revolutionary, prestigious auction houses, such as Christie's, Sotheby's, and Antiquorum have auctioned off some of the world's finest watches. Antiquorum is the newest of the bunch, but is now known as 'the world's leading auction house specializing in the field of horology.'
It will not be wrong to say that watch auctions are becoming increasingly popular among the masses. While many auctions yield prices above the original retail price of each watch, there are many pieces, which do not. This gives people a chance to adorn their wrists with exquisite timepieces that they might not have been able to afford firsthand. It also acts as a central location allowing the novice and collector alike, the opportunity to locate rare and vintage timepieces.
When buying a pre-owned or vintage timepiece, there are few cautions that one must exercise before the final purchase. You must carefully go through the condition of the watch and try to find the service history, which will give you the full history of the piece. There are many tell tale signs that can help you decide the condition of the watch. For example, a vintage watch might have been fitted with new parts or the dial might have been replaced. An observant eye will be able to catch this anomaly because a newly fitted part is more lustrous and the colour is certainly different from the other parts of the watch. It is fine to own a watch that has new parts, but then one should not pay any sort of premium for that particular timepiece.
One should also look out for signs of corrosion or scratches in the main body of the case and also if the crown is in satisfactory condition. Equal importance should be paid to the movement of the watch. If the movement of the watch is not functioning, or is not keeping proper time, you should be sceptical about the ability to bring the watch back to its original condition. An auction is the place where the watch should be in its best condition for sale. If not working you might assume that it is not repairable. Buying from auctions reduces the risk considerably since trained eyes inspect the watches and also the reputation of the auction house is at stake. Take for instance Antiquorum. It offers a detailed guide which gives information regarding the technical data, the description of the watch, historical and biographical comments if any. This allows the buyer to get a lot of first hand information about the watches that s/he might be interested in.
Another reason for the increasing popularity of watch auctions is that it allows the buyer to take advantage of the fluctuation in the world's currencies. A US owned watch might be a bargain for a Hong Kong buyer if the Hong Kong dollar is stronger than the US dollar at the time of the auction or vice versa.
These currency fluctuations also work to the advantage of the seller. For example, if an owner in the US bought a watch for $ 25,000 two years ago might be able to sell it more simply because the currency is strong elsewhere.
Watch auctions thus allow you to get that coveted watch pieces which otherwise would have been difficult to obtain. A little caution and an observant eye will make your experience at watch auctions a pleasant one.
If you have any questions regarding watch auctions, antique timepiece, vintage timepiece, etc.. feel free to contact us via email and a member of the TimeCafe.com staff will be happy to respond.