Sunday, October 19, 2008
Selling Your Treasures in Difficult Economic Times
After a week in the desert, I’ve had time to think about what we should be doing in these difficult economic times. The rare and unusual are still in demand; I have proven that over the last couple of months by selling a few great treasures, but it hasn't been because the buyers searched us out. So how do we sell our treasures today?
The auction route is still possible, but as I have stated in the past, using this avenue to sell your items can cost you dearly, sometimes up to 50% of your selling price. That eats away at your profit, and may not allow you to meet your goal of doubling your investment to keep your funds compounding. So, what other ways can we use to sell the better items we purchase? I spent many hours on my trip just thinking about this situation. The old saying “keep it simple, stupid” came to me. So, how can we do that?
We must take our antiques and art directly to the buyer. And do it inexpensively so our profits remain high. I’m going to start using Craigslist.org, which is free somewhat. However, there is a right way to use these listing as a tool for selling in order to get the results you desire. Try listing in areas where there will most likely be interest in what you’re selling is the first step. This might take a little research. For example, Rookwood Pottery might be listed in the Cincinnati area, because that’s where it was produced. The Charles Vickery prints we have could be listed right here in Chicago, because he was a Chicago artist. So, if you have a painting by a regional artist, then this is where you might expect to find the most interest in that artist’s paintings.
Another source is to go on the Internet and type in “free ads” in the search box. There you will find many places you can advertise your treasures for sale at no cost. I was amazed at how many sites provided free listings, and I have had some results using this method for selling. One of the first suggestions I gave to members of the 31 Club was to subscribe to the Antique Trader and Antique Week. If you did this, you know there are classifieds in each paper where you may find willing buyers, or you might want to have your own listings.
Another idea is to look up collector clubs. Find a club that collects what you are looking to sell. Email them with a list of your items. Today, you will have to go a little outside to box to get your items sold at the higher prices, but it can still be done. 31 Club will be continually searching for ideas to pass on to the members to assure their success, even in times like these.