Timing is Sometimes Everything

Ever hear the expression, “Timing is Everything”?  Well, this certainly applies to the auction world.

If you are lucky enough to have a very rare and unique collectible, you could sell it on Christmas day and still demand a high return.  However, more often items require good timing to result in highest returns.

Last year we were given a number of Dept 56 Christmas buildings very close to the actual date of the holiday.  We sold a number of them for a good price, but when we tried to list the remaining buildings after December 25, they didn’t even get a nibble at the opening bid.  This year we were given over 35 Holiday Barbie dolls at the beginning of December.  Again, we rushed to get them up quickly and they sold pretty well – they will all be out in time for the lucky winners to open them under the tree.  These dolls would just linger in January.

Richie and I were watching an episode of the new TV show, Storage Wars – where people buy out the contents of unclaimed storage lockers.  Two guys got a box of Holiday Barbies and stated they were worth $40 each – these clowns give a bad name to the auction world – these dolls don’t even command that price at the height of the market, with very few exceptions.

If you want to get the best value with jewelry adorned hearts – aim for the few weeks before Valentine’s Day or Mother’s Day.  I know it sounds glum, but when a celebrity, like Michael Jackson, passes away – if you have any memorabilia of his – put the auction up immediately – a few weeks later the value will drop like a lead weight.  A few years ago we sold a Bob Hope video for over $20 only to find out that he had died the night before.

If  a new video game system or an Apple product allows you to pre-order it – scan a copy of your receipt and make it a one day auction.  Once the general public can buy the same item, your chance of making a profit plummets.

Even time of day or day of week can make a difference.  Unless you are looking to reach an audience in a different country and you think they may be the only ones to bid on your item, it is best to start an auction at a reasonable time for people across the United States.  We try to start our auctions in the early evening on the West coast, so that the East coast is still awake.  Ending an auction in the middle of the night is not going to get the best bids, since these days, most of the bidding comes in the last few minutes and sleeping people don’t bid.

An auction demands the best price that someone is willing to pay.  However, sometimes you can get a little advantage when you think about the best time of day, week or month to list the item.  A little thought can sometimes go a long way to better returns.

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Published in: on December 15, 2010 at 4:20 pm  Comments (2)  

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2 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. Great information.

  2. Great information


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