The official definition of an antique is something that is at least 100 years old and is collectable because of its rarity, beauty, or other unique features. Of course, the average person has little or no knowledge of fine antiques, and therefore you would require a skilled person to evaluate the piece. There is always the possibility that the antique dealer tells you its worthless, hoping you will sell it to them for next to nothing and for this reason, it is advisable to ask several reputable dealers to cast their eyes over the item in question.
The ideal way to approach a dealer is to mention that you are not interested in selling the item, but would like to know its value, and for a small fee, you should receive an honest appraisal. Once you have several estimations, you should have a good idea of its value, and also if it is worthwhile restoring the item to its original condition.
The most common way for a person to obtain an antique is by inheriting it from a family member. The person who bequeaths it to you might not be aware of its value, so even if you are told it is worthless, it is advisable to have it valued by a reputable antique dealer. The Internet can help you find a reliable antique dealer, and whether you are looking for antique furniture in Brisbane or any other city, an online search would point you in the right direction.
To Sell or Not?
This is a decision only you can make, and if the valuation is a good one and you have no emotional ties with the item, it might be a good idea to take the money and run. Antiques do accrue value over time and if you are in no desperate need of cash, it might be better to hang onto the piece and wait for a better time to sell. The decision would depend on the results of several honest appraisals, and with restoration possibilities, you might have several options.
The item in question might need some work to restore it to its former glory and this must be done by a skilled person. Antique restoration can either increase or decrease the value, depending on what has been done and who did the work, so make sure you ask several reputable dealers for their honest opinion, and more importantly, what your options are. Once the item has been identified and its condition noted, the dealer would be able to give you a ball park figure of its worth at today’s market prices, and this will help you to decide what best to do.
There are people who stumble upon antiques that are worth millions and end up selling it for next to nothing, as they are unaware of its true value. To avoid this, make sure you contact a reputable antique dealer who will give you their honest opinion of the value.