In the world of buying and selling antiques, people are always interested in the value of an object. Some people think of value as a fixed number, and consider “book value” is a widely accepted number that is applicable in any situation.

The truth is that the value of an antique, as with any commodity in a free market economy, is fluid and dynamic. Value, or more accurately, the amount of money someone is willing to pay for an item at a particular point in time, is largely subjective. The value of an antique or collectible item is affected by a wide variety of factors and circumstances, including supply and demand, rarity, provenance, condition, knowledge on the part of both buyer and seller, regional differences, and the ever-changing dynamics of the market or sales venue. In addition there are multiple levels of values for both wholesale and retail trade.

When it comes to getting an appraisal on your items, there are several options. You can get a formal, written appraisal from a certified appraiser with expertise pertaining to the item in question. Often, people do this for insurance purposes. A collector of estate jewelry, for example, may take their items to a jeweler for a written appraisal so that their insurance rider can be accurately valued.

Another option is simply to get a basic idea of the relative value of an item for the purpose of selling that item.

At Pittsburgh Antiques.NET, we offer a free initial evaluation of your items, to help give you a better idea of what to do with the things you want to sell or get appraised.

Contact us at 412-585-0473 or send us an e-mail to get more information.