There’s nothing more exciting than a treasure hunt! That’s why so many people love shopping for antiques, the thrill of the chase is addictive. You simply never know what you might stumble upon, or what amazing discovery could be lurking around the next corner.
The search for antique deals might be fun, but it’s also a challenge. As the popularity of antiquing has grown over the years, it’s become increasingly difficult to strike gold. And yet hitting the jackpot isn’t impossible.
Let’s take a look at a few of the tricks of the trade that the pros would rather keep for themselves.
Surprising Secrets for Finding Antique Deals That Antique Sellers Won’t Share
Just because it’s an antique doesn’t mean that it has to be expensive. There are plenty of ways to save money and still get high-quality antiques.
Read on to learn the top secrets for finding antique deals.
You Must Do Your Homework
Never stop learning, never stop researching. The simple truth is that you have to know what you’re looking for. The antique market is constantly changing, what was hot last year or the year before might not necessarily be what’s hot today.
If you want to be a serious player, you’ve got to have a rough of idea of what items are worth.
This means spending lots of time seeing what items sold for online. Keep in mind that antiques typically draw a higher price tag when sold in person. There is just something about a buyer being able to see and examine the item face to face that gets them much more excited and willing to spend money.
Learn to Watch Other Buyers
Pay attention to what other buyers are interested in. Watch how they browse, the type of items that seem to catch their attention, as well as how they examine an item.
There is much to learn from other shoppers. But there is more to it than just what other people seem drawn to. Observing others helps you understand what types of antiques to look out for, what might be hot right now, and what might increase in popularity in the near future.
Let them be a research tool for you. Keep your eyes open and pay attention.
Develop an Eye for Quality
This skill comes more naturally for some people than others. And yet learning to spot quality is most often a learned skill.
Don’t worry about knowing every detail about every item you see. You’ll discover that’s almost impossible. The more important skill is to learn how to identify quality.
Quality is in the details. Fine stitching in textiles, nicely detailed hand painting on ceramics, and extraordinary design and craftsmanship in jewelry and antique furniture, such as an antique snooker table, are all signs of high quality.
Educate yourself on what to look for on labels, the importance of particular dates and serial numbers, and small marks that hold some significance yet might otherwise go overlooked.
A smart antique shopper should understand how to categorize various levels of quality quickly and accurately. This will make your shopping experience more efficient and fruitful.
Bring Reference Materials
No matter where you go, you’re likely to spot something that you’re not familiar with. Thus an item might require some research. Your smartphone obviously makes this type of scenario much easier to deal with, but it’s always wise to bring along additional research materials to keep in your car.
Don’t be embarrassed about stepping outside to look up an item in a book. Sometimes all it takes is a quick glance online to refresh your memory about an item or to research the latest price range.
Having the ability to look up an item quickly and efficiently can save you a lot of time of money, as well as make the shopping experience far less stressful.
Reach Out to a Friend
Most of us have friends or peers who can help in identifying the value of certain items. Feel free to call them anytime you’re uncertain. This can often be easier than thumbing through a book or using an online research tool.
It’s wise to cultivate strong relationships within the antique market. These are people who are able to point you in the right direction and offer insights about items that you might not have considered. Remember that all input is valuable.
Get There Early and Stay Late
The old saying is that the early bird gets the worm. Well, it’s as true with antique shopping as with anything else. Serious antique shoppers understand the importance of showing up at a garage sale, auction, or antique store the moment the doors open in order to scope out the inventory.
It’s equally important to drop by late in the day when most shoppers have thinned out. This is the time of day when prices might have been lowered and you could find a bargain. This is especially true at garage and estate sales.
The simple truth is that persistence pays off.
Don’t get discouraged. It’s important to hit your favorite antique store again and again. Keep in mind that inventory is always turning over, and new items arrive every week, and often daily.
Go to flea markets. Spend hours browsing every aisle, booth, and table. Spend lots of time scouring online auction sites, checking out new items, and studying prices.
Remember that this is a numbers game, don’t expect to uncover a treasure each time you’re out. Like fishing, you have to keep your bait in the water if you hope to catch anything. Just stay educated and enjoy the hunt!
Becoming a Successful Treasure Hunter
Shopping for antiques really is like being a treasure hunter. After all, there are few things more exciting than discovering an item of beauty and great value hidden among the dust and clutter. Antique deals are everywhere if you just know where to look and what to look for.
The key is becoming an educated shopper. Stay current on prices and trends.
Don’t get frustrated. Just stay in the hunt. And you just might be surprised at the treasure you’ll stumble upon when you’re least expecting it.
If you’re looking for more money saving and shopping tips, we have you covered. Click here to learn tips on how to look chic on a budget.