Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Daryle Lambert: Antiques and used items trumps new

Steuben Cintra Bowl

My family just received an early Christmas present and guess what it was? It is used and yet we are so happy with it. It’s not clothing or furniture but a new vehicle. I think that this period in time is changing the way we think about money. In fact, I think we are getting smarter. Our new purchase is a 2007 model that was never sold by the dealer and so we saved several thousand dollars; saving more than half its original price. Now that is quite a stocking stuffer.

I recently recommended buying sterling service pieces for $5 to $10 per piece depending on the pattern. There should be willing buyers if you simply price it for twice your cost because in today’s market it is difficult to find good sterling for under $45 per piece in the stores. Also remember it is best if the pieces aren't monogrammed. This will give you the opportunity to complete one or more steps in your race to the finish line in the "Million Dollar Race." For you new readers, this is a program that the members of the 31 Club are using to gage their progress in this business. You can find out all about it on the 31 Club’s website at www.31corp.com.

Value of some things change when used but others don't. Example; fine crystal such as Waterford and Steuben always retain their value so if you come across six or more of these pieces for $5 a piece, you can be assured that they will sell for more than double their purchase price (even online). Most dealers don't buy these items and I often find them still setting on a shelf at a house sale on the last day of the sale marked half price. You can even offer less for several pieces and generally make the purchase. I purchased a Steuben Cintra fruit bowl for $20 and its value is approximately $1,200. It was overlooked by other buyers because they thought it was too new. I think that it is even better than new. There are so many other items that fit the 31 Club’s program. Go to the store and check the price of good sets of china. Names like Doulton, Rosenthal and others can run into the thousands but in the secondary market they may be bring only $200-$500. If you break these sets down and auction the pieces on http://www.seeauctions.com/ , http://www.onlineauctions.com/ or eBay the set may double or triple your investment.

Although name doesn't always equal quality, it usually does and when you can buy the best names for up to 90% discount, this should put you well on the road to success in this business. When I said that people are getting smarter, I meant it. You can tell that even the stores are recognizing this fact when they put up sale signs on new merchandise as soon as it comes in. My wife routinely looks for highly discounted racks when shopping and the merchandise is still new. On a recent shopping excursion, I spotted a great vest with horses on it for my wife but when I showed it to her with a price tag of $125, she shook her head no. Not giving up, I asked the clerk to check the price. The register reflected that the price was reduced to $44 and with a coupon for an additional 20% off; I quickly purchased the vest and can’t wait for her to wear it.

With money being tight, people are looking for bargains for quality items and that is where we can shine. Show them the bargains and the quality items you have to offer. Use your time wisely and get out there and buy. I know some of our members have purchased quality items that haven't sold yet but they will. While the lesser pieces may not sell, quality always will. One of the first things I wrote about was that this business is always about your ability to buy right and never about selling because rare and unusual items will always sell. I also put quality items in that statement. If you have questions, now is the time and I am a waiting to assist you in meeting the goals you have set for yourself.


  1. Wow that Steuben Cintra fruit bowl that you got for $20 and is valued at approximately $1,200 is quite a find!!

    Good for you!

  2. Great blog, I really enjoyed going thro' your post, and will keep visiting this blog very often.