Antique jewelry can serve as a solid alternative investment if you want something to invest in that's not tied to the stock market. To successfully see a return when investing in jewelry pieces, though, you need to understand the asset class. Here are some tips to help you get started investing in antique jewelry.
1. Understand the Trends of Different Eras
You should only invest in the best pieces from any given era of history, for the best pieces have the greatest potential to increase in value. With any alternative asset class, the rarest and high-quality items see the greatest increases in value when prices go up because there are only a few of these pieces.
To identify the best pieces from different eras, you must first study the history of jewelry. Focus on the decades that you'll purchase pieces from to learn which companies were the best jewelers during those decades. As companies innovated and designed differently, some came to the forefront and others faded to the background during various decades.
Once you know what companies you want to invest in, look for signed pieces from only those companies. Unsigned pieces are made by an unknown artist or company and naturally worth less. Signed pieces by other companies won't have the same value as the ones that you determine are the best.
2. Purchase the Best Condition Possible
When you purchase a piece of antique jewelry, buy the best condition that your budget allows you to. The better a piece's condition, the more the piece will be worth now and the more it could be worth in the future. While this means that pieces in pristine condition have the highest purchase costs, they also come with the greatest potential increase in value.
3. Maintain a Long-Term View
While antique jewelry is an excellent way to store and build wealth, it is far from a get-rich-quick scheme. Antique jewelry should only be purchased as a long-term investment, for it takes a while for pieces to grow in value and jewelry isn't the most liquid investment.
Liquidity is a measure of how quickly you can sell an investment, and it can take a little while to find someone who will pay the going price for a piece of antique jewelry. While this has advantages, it also means that you shouldn't expect to sell a piece at profit shortly after acquiring the item.