Investing in Vintage Watches

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We’re always on the lookout for an intriguing idea for alternative investments. Today we’re sharing an extensive article from Bob’s Watches (a great source for purchasing preowned timepieces, we’ve used them ourselves!) about luxury watches and which brands hold their value. From the article:

While most goods depreciate immediately once sold, certain luxury watches retain or even increase in value over the years. But which timepieces hang on to their value and which are the best luxury watch brands to invest in?

Good question. This article begins to answer it. As with many of the alternative assets we cover here, watches are interesting because they not only provide a way to preserve capital, they also provide enjoyment. Going deeper, watches provide another benefit that many other alternative assets do not – utility. Wearing a watch allows me to tell time without a cell phone (shocking concept, I know).

There is something else that luxury watches – or any item that one could attach the word “luxury” to – provide, that is almost taboo in our culture. Status. Status is something that no one cares to talk about, even those who seek it. Interestingly though, every collectible we cover here and perhaps every collectible in the world shares this aspect. Owning vintage cars gives a certain status. So does owning a near-mint copy of Incredible Hulk #181. But we don’t imbue the owners of these things with the…we’ll say “snobbery” for lack of better word, the way we might when we say that owning a luxury watch gives someone status.

Why is that? Is there really that much difference between the status an Aston Martin DB4 confers on its owner and the status a Patek Phillippe does? What does “status” really mean anyway? I’d make the argument that in both these cases, “status” is really about deeply understanding the value of something, and publicly announcing to the world “this is important to me.” Wearing a watch is both stylish and functional, and the watches that hold value are built to be worn and last, as well as being beautiful. When I wear one, another watch collector knows why I’ve chosen that watch. We understand each other. That gives me status.



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