It’s always a guess, what will be a collectible or what won’t … if anything, because it is a strange quality of the human condition that doesn’t always seem practical. Most people accumulate something in their lives, whether those things are related objects, experiences, or relationships. Watch collectors are no different, using their appreciation of timepieces and the collection thereof to satisfy some deep, inner desire.
Collectors want to obtain items that they feel are “important.” In fact, that concept is so crucial that even in the watch industry, so many auction events by various houses are referred to as an auction of “important watches.” The question, of course, is what constitutes “important?” Or rather, what might make a watch important enough to someone to induce them to add it to their collection?
1. Defining a Collectible
Let’s shift this to the more specific topic of being able to predict what timepieces produced today will become collectible in the future. The first major rule of collecting is that, for the most part, collectible items are no longer produced. For something to be collectible, there seems to be a rule that there is both a finite amount out there, and that the item’s life has in some way reached an end. Only then can the life of that item be seen in its entirety, and a cult of collecting (on any scale) even have the possibility to exist.
Buying watches as collectibles when they are still being made is not buying a collectible at all. Instead, buying a watch that is currently in production as a collectible is merely purchasing a prospectively collectible item that may or may not turn out to be valuable to anyone but yourself in the future. Only watches no longer produced can actually be a current collectible. So, to buy a current collectible, first look to something that is no longer being produced.
2. Retail duds
You’ll find that many of today’s more interesting collectible watches were retail duds when they first came out. Perhaps the most interesting element of watch collecting for me is the simple fact that many of today’s collectors often have no way of knowing the sentiments around a particular desired product when it was first commercially released. Even if that person was alive and buying watches at the time, they may have forgotten or not noticed how the market initially reacted to that product when it ended up being desired by collectors.
The watch market today is full of retail duds, and frankly most of them aren’t going to be in demand (ever). Nevertheless, a select number of retail dud watches were otherwise fine timepieces that just happened to be a poor match for the market when they were released. What happens in these situations is that someone in the future, in what are often different market conditions, rediscovers the product and appreciates it for what it is. What further helps is that because the watch might have been obscure to begin with, prices for these watches on the market will be very low. Almost all collector trends begin with purchasing watches that they feel are currently undervalued.
A common trend here is that future collectible watches are those that have limited numbers. Even if a watch is able to retain value well, if it is produced in very high numbers then it will almost by definition never be collectible. With that said, sometimes versions of highly produced timepieces can be collectible. A good example is the Rolex Submariner – that is by all accounts a popular watch. Within the Submariner family are some more rare models or those that are prototypes. Because of their rare or unique nature, even among a very common product, they acquire the status of something with limited numbers as a subgroup within the larger group.
Each of the above reasons contributes to the chances that a timepiece produced today or recently will be a future collectible. There is no one way to define all the characteristics that go into a collectible watch, but as stated in this article, there are certain trends. To sum up, future collectible watches must no longer be produced, and have to have been produced in some appreciably limited quantity during their lifetime. It also helps if those watches have some kind of important distinguishing factor that future market conditions will be able to appreciate more than those presented when the watches were sold as new. Again, a bad watch today isn’t going to be better tomorrow. However, an unsalable good watch today does have the possibility of being heavily desired tomorrow.
externe bron door : Equwatch.com