As we head into the new year, we also head into continued uncertainty with our economy, among other challenges. The past few years have left some battle scars on the personal property industry, and the economy is still in a weakened state. We are witnessing the market become flooded with traditional furnishings. One has to wonder:
- When will the market return?
- What is currently selling well, if traditional furnishings are selling low?
How I wish I had that crystal ball! Since we don’t, we can only read the trends based on our experience.
This list is not all-inclusive, but just the highlights of the market. Items on the “NOT selling well” list are still selling but only if prices have been significantly lowered by the seller/liquidator.
Just this week, we saw a fantastic antique English, curly maple chest of drawers sell for $150 at an auction. A few years ago, that piece would have brought $1,000.
Please don’t blame the seller; this isn’t the seller’s fault.
The market is simply not bearing healthy prices on many items at this time.
This is the new normal.
What’s currently HOT and selling well?
- Mid century furniture, some Danish modern, designer furniture from this era
- Military items: Civil War to present day
- Genuine and costume jewelry
- Sterling silver/gold/platinum
- Vintage toys
- Record albums: classic rock, jazz, blues. Not opera or classical yet.
- Vintage electronics and stereos
- Utilitarian items: housewares, cookware, kitchen ware, tools, camping, etc.
- Used cars/boats
- Vintage garden and patio items
- Yard items/ornamental/garden tools
What’s NOT selling well?
- Traditional “brown” furniture
- Glassware: clear etched, cut crystal, pressed glass, etc.
- China sets and painted porcelains
- Victorian furniture, other dark heavy antique pieces
- Holiday items/collections
- Rugs: Persian, Oriental
- Collector plates and figurines (Franklin Mint, Bradford Exchange, etc.)
- Upholstered furniture
- Common antiques
- Dining room furniture, hutches
- Print media: numbered prints, mass-produced art items
If there’s one thing for certain, it’s that things are always changing. For now and for quite some time to come, these are the trends and predictions. One day, this will change too; we just don’t know when.
©2014 The Estate Lady®
Julie Hall, The Estate Lady®, is the foremost national expert on personal property in estates, including liquidating, advising, and appraising. http://www.TheEstateLady.com She is also the Director of American Society of Estate Liquidators®, the national educational and resource organization for estate liquidation. http://www.aselonline.com.
No part of The Estate Lady® blogs, whole or partial, may be used without Julie Hall’s written consent. Email her at Julie@TheEstateLady.com.