Watch Value Guide: How much is my Watch Worth?
How Much is My Watch Worth?
Unfortunately, the answer isn’t cut and dry. There are several characteristics of your timepiece that may affect its value on the watch market. Unless you’re a qualified jewelry appraiser or watch enthusiast, you may not be able to tell at first glance.
If you’re a watch novice, you can start by looking up the value of a watch by brand (which should be written on the watch face). Search pictures and find something that looks similar. This can give you a good idea of how much your watch may be worth.
Now, a watch value lookup by picture alone won’t give you an exact idea of your watch value. For that, you’ll need to evaluate your watch based on all its possible value factors.
Want to Know How Much your Watch is Worth?
Factors that Affect Watch Value
Pocket watches and wristwatches are different and have different value factors. For example, a pocket watch would be examined based on the movement and the case material/characteristics/quality. On the other hand, a wristwatch would be evaluated based on the movement and manufacture of the entire piece as a whole. Some watches, like a chronograph, can be evaluated on both factors.
Some watches retain more value over time due to their brand name. Popular watch brands that tend to hold their value over time and hold a higher resale value include luxury watch brands and styles like:
- Omega (Omega Seamaster, Omega Speedmaster)
- Rolex (Rolex Daytona , Rolex Submariner, Rolex GMT)
- Patek Philippe
- Audemars Piguet
What metal is the watch made from? Popular materials of value include stainless steel, platinum and gold. Research the market value of your watch metal—this could affect the current value of your piece.
Mechanics and Movement
The manufacturing of timepieces is a craft. The more seasoned the manufacturer and region, the better the watch build and movement. Mechanical watches (that tick) tend to be the most expensive—they are built to withstand extreme height and depths.
We recommend getting a full movement service by a skilled watchmaker.
Age and Condition
If your watch used to have great movement but hasn’t been regularly serviced, the value of your watch may be diminished. Alternatively, vintage watches kept in pristine condition would, of course, be way more valuable.
If your watch isn’t in great condition, consider getting it cleaned and restored. But, be careful. Sometimes something like a new strap or hands can bring down the value. Most times, you want to keep all the original pieces. So talk to your jeweler about how you want your watch to be cleaned and they should be able to accommodate you.
Estimate Your Watch Value
You can find out how much your watch is worth by evaluating your piece on the above factors. Once you have done your research, get a professional opinion by getting your piece appraised.
If you end up with something of value, consider keeping it as a family heirloom! If you’re not interested in that, you may be able to convert it into quick cash in your pocket.