The first few months of the year is the perfect time to declutter. But before you toss anything out, remember to take a good look at the items. As they say, one man’s trash is another man’s treasure. Your grandma’s old costume jewelry may turn out to be a precious stone. On the other hand, that china you may have regularly been polishing may turn out to be a fake.
How do you weed out what is valuable and what is not? Here is a handy guide to help you declutter your home, so you can decide which items to toss, and which to profit from.
1. Period Furniture
Furniture from notable periods is very valuable. Depending on which era it belongs to, a fine piece of furniture can cost thousands or even millions of dollars. Colonial American numbers tend to bring in big bucks in auctions. The Chippendale, Hepplewhite, Sheraton, and Queen Anne styles are very popular in auction houses.
These pieces of furniture are so valuable because they are incredibly rare. Many period pieces are passed on from generation to generation. Others are found in museum displays. Due to their rarity and scarcity, it is very seldom that an actual, authentic piece is somehow found outside of the sources above.
Yet don’t fret – that armoire your grandparents used to love may still be worth something. Period pieces are known for their exquisite designs and attention to detail. If you think that the item you have is authentic and valuable, have it properly appraised so that you will know if you are hoarding an expensive piece of history, or if it’s just an impressive knockoff.
2. Oriental Antiques
Many homes contain Asian antiques. From big vases to delicate china, Asian antiques are beautiful and exquisite. You are holding on to a pretty penny if you own fine china relics.
Don’t get too excited just yet, though. Here’s the catch: some experts agree that it is difficult to bring china out of, well, China. Some that are in America were brought back by original settlers and handed to their families as heirlooms. Given that the Chinese may be too protective of their culture (and rightly so, too!) and that the antiques didn’t make it to American soils legally may bring into question the legitimacy of your item. There are many stores in the country today that are creating reproductions of known Oriental antiques. Some of these reproductions appear to be authentic, but even some pawn shops and antique shops are unable to differentiate them.
However, we’re not discounting the fact that your Oriental antique may be the real thing. To ensure its value, go to an expert who can determine its authenticity. This is the only way for you to determine if you’re holding on to a replica or an original.
3. Tiffany Lamps
The Tiffany lamp may go down in history as one of the most expensive lamps of all time. The Tiffany lamps were created by Tiffany Glass and Decorating Company in the 1890s. However, the company stopped production by early 1900s, thereby increasing the value of the few lamps that were already in circulation. The most common styles can fetch $12,000 to $20,000, while the rarer kinds can sell millions. Of course, this depends on the lamp’s condition, design, and its previous owners.
Similar to Oriental antiques, the value of Tiffany lamps has inspired many to come up with their own replicas. In fact, during the 1920s, many companies tried to copy the Tiffany’s style. Some of these lamps were so well-crafted, so much so that even experts may have trouble telling them apart.
4. High-End Electronics
In the age of hard drives and Spotify, you may be wondering who uses massive electronics. But high-end stereo systems actually cost a pretty penny. A high-end audio system transforms how you listen to music and gives immense satisfaction for years to come, which is why many collectors hunt the likes of Onkyo, Pioneer, and Sony at auctions.
5. Floor Lamps and Chandeliers
Do you have chandelier in your home that isn’t exactly your style? Well, it may be worth a lot more money than you think. Most people nowadays favor mini chandeliers, perhaps due to space constraints. However, floor lamps and chandeliers can still bring you a lot of money if it’s the real deal. Depending on its original manufacturer, condition, and materials used, even small chandeliers can be worth at least $1000 and above.
6. Sports Memorabilia
Many factors go into determining the value of a signed collectible, the top being who authenticated it. Without proper authentication, your signed collectibles have no real value in the open market. But if a trusted source validates your item, the signature’s value increases.
There is a high demand for authenticated sports memorabilia, but the value is considerably determined by what gets signed. For instance, a signed Michael Jordan Jersey is worth a lot more than a signed Michael Jordan photograph. Helmets and Jerseys are two of the most valuable items to get signed, while bats, balls, cleats, and gloves tend to maintain stable values.
Is that painting in your attic really worth something? First, you need to determine if it’s oil painting or watercolor and if it’s an original or replica, along with many more varieties to consider.
Prints of watercolors are challenging to make out from the original, thus, requiring a trained eye to spot the difference. Rare prints of valuable paintings do command high prices in secondary markets. But the best way to unravel the signs of an original painting is to seek a professional appraiser.
Sell Your Antiques and Collectibles at Biltmore Loan
Selling antiques and collectibles is not only a great way to declutter, but it’s also a hassle-free way to profit. Many collectors could be searching high and low for a collectible you have. If you are looking to sell, contact us today at 480-991-5626 for Scottsdale and 480-705-5626 for Chandler.