One of our Superb Large Antique Partners Desks

Thursday, 29 October 2015

Selling an Antique Desk?

As long established international antique furniture dealers in the UK are often get asked what is the best way to sell an old (antique) desk.

In fact this is a question we get asked several times most weeks.  As peoples circumstances change they often don't want to keep that lovely piece of antique furniture that has served them so well over the years.

The good news is that there is always a good demand for quality pieces of antique furniture that are useful in today's world.  Here are 3 ways that you could approach the sale of your desk

Route 1 - Online.  Yes - the DIY sell it yourself approach.  These days there are so many options for selling online.  If you are prepared to take some photos, write a good honest description and perhaps help to deliver the desk (or make arrangements to have it delivered to the new buyer) then this can be a good way forward.  The issue with this approach can be knowing what price to set for your desk - however a small amount of online research should quickly reveal the "going rate" for similar pieces

Route 2 - Auction.  Using a professional auction house can be a good route for both "standard" and "rare" desks.  A professional auction house will provide an estimate of value and their terms of business.  This can be a useful route for those wishing to have a sale with minimum fuss and without the need to deal face to face with the buyer.  It may be a good idea to shop around between auction houses to see who have the most favourable terms and commissions - not all auction houses are the same!  And also beware any hidden fees for transport, storage or photography.   Local auction houses can help with most transactions however if you believe that you have a rare or unusual desk then it may be best to contact an auction house of national or international repute who can market the desk more widely.

Route 3 - Sell to a Dealer.  We often buy desks direct from private clients.  We offer at least the same price that would be obtained at auction  and we handle all the paperwork and transportation.  The sale can be a simple transaction or a sale on "consignment" - whereby the dealer will market the desk alongside his regular stock and then take a fixed amount or percentage once the desk sells at the amount agreed with the vendor (this route may realise a higher price but can take longer).  Ideally it would be a good idea to approach a number of dealers (perhaps by email with photos, dimensions and a description of the desk) to get the best price.  For a rare high value desk it may be best to approach dealers with a national or even international client base.

More information on antique desks, antique writing, library and office furniture is available at our website