Guide to Selling a Pre-Owned Watch

It is no secret that a masterfully crafted luxury watch is an investment so selling your watch can feel overwhelming and risky. While online marketplaces like eBay or Craigslist are great for selling clothes or electronics, you are likely not going to maximize what you can get and it can carry some risk. By selling your watch through us, you don’t have to go through the hassle of listing your watch, dealing with the stress that comes with selling to an unknown buyer, or fear that you will not receive an appropriate amount for your watch. Selling to Crown & Caliber takes the stress out of the selling process because our process is safe and convenient. Check out more about us, or submit a free quote for your watch. If you still want to sell on your own, here are some considerations:

Important Considerations Before Selling Your Pre-Owned Luxury Watch

If you are trying to sell your luxury pre-owned watch, you should pay attention to the following tips to make this process easier:

Hidden commissions with auctions

When starting the selling process, many sellers look into selling their luxury watch to auction houses. However, while this may at first seem like a hassle-free process, there are many hidden commissions involved in this process that negate the positives of selling through the auction. Oftentimes, there is a Buyer’s Commission of 15-25% of the hammer price in addition to a Seller’s Commission that is around 10-15% of the actual sales price. Both of these will  subtract from the amount you will receive in hand. With the additional insurance, photography, and shipping price, the net price to the seller is significantly less than the hammer price.

Box and Papers

When a luxury watch is purchased directly from an authorized dealer, it usually comes with a box and papers that prove authenticity. Keeping the box and papers will increase the value of your luxury watch when you want to sell it because together they verify authenticity, which eases the nerves of potential buyers.


If you are selling your luxury watch to an individual, there is always the chance that the buyer will come back and claim that there is something wrong with the watch and demand his money back. Also, there is the threat a buyer can return the watch not in its original state. We have seen firsthand where a buyer will remove links of a luxury watch brand and then return the watch. For high end Rolexes, there have been several instances when a buyer has removed parts of the Rolex movement and replaced them with replica parts – unbeknownst to the seller when the Rolex was returned.

Include the Model Number

Without the model number, a potential buyer has no way of finding out the important facts that model numbers tell and will most likely not give your luxury watch a second look.

Quality Photos

Taking high quality photos is something our team takes very seriously. It is important to include photos from every angle, as well as of every imperfection. Being transparent with your photos can increase the perceived value of your luxury watch.

Pictures of Audemars Piguet

Never give away the entire serial number

Serial numbers are unique to your specific luxury watch so it is important to prove that your watch is authentic. However, by giving out the entire serial number, a replica maker can create his replica and etch your serial number on the case; therefore, you don’t want to give out the entire number. However, because the serial number proves your watch is authentic, it is important to show that you have one. So you should show the first four digits of the serial number and then replace the rest of the digits with xxx.

It is best to include all information that you possess about your luxury watch when trying to sell it. However, it is difficult to do this properly without the help of an expert valuation team. Here are some tips for pricing your watch:

Tips for Pricing Your Watch

When it comes to selling your luxury watch, the first thing to figure out is how much your watch is worth. Here at Crown & Caliber, that is the first thing our valuation team does when looking at a luxury watch. Here are the various steps that valuation teams look at when determining the appropriate price for a pre-owned luxury watch:

Model and Serial Number are always the first thing a valuation team looks at when determining the price of a pre-owned luxury watch. The model number will tell the team everything they need to know about the watch, such as the year at made, its material and its movement. Located in different locations for each luxury watch brand, the model number and serial number are both very important factors in determining the price of the pre-owned watch.

Condition of a pre-owned luxury watch also impacts the value of the watch. When observing the exterior of a watch’s case, the valuation teams looks for any dents or scratches, as the condition greatly contributes to the price of the used watch. If the dents are shallow, then they can be buffed out; however, deep dents cannot be removed and will have an affect on the value of the watch. As a note, the bezel and crown should fit tightly and should not be significantly damaged.

The Bracelet of a luxury watch typically suffers from the most damage, as it tends to collect the most dirt and is often overstretched. In addition, if a watch’s links are removed and misplaced, these missing links decrease the value of the watch because each link is valuable to the watch’s worth. Therefore, as a luxury watch owner, it is important to keep all links that are removed in order to get the highest value for a pre-owned watch.

Market Value is extremely important in determining the price of a pre-owned luxury watch. In essence, market value is the amount that buyers are willing to spend on a certain item in the market at the current time. While some watches, such as Rolex, are always high in demand with a consistent market value, this is not the case with all luxury watches. The demand for other watch brands can go through ups and downs, which affect the market value of the watch.

Selling Your Watch

Whether you decide to sell your watch yourself or use a service, knowing this information can help maximize the amount you can get for your watch. We can also provide a free, no obligation quote.

Post Tags
Share Post
Written by

Crown & Caliber is the smartest way to buy or sell a luxury watch. As an exclusively online marketplace for pre-owned timepieces, Crown & Caliber exists to ensure that when it comes down to the final transaction, buyers and sellers can both win. For sellers, we do all the legwork of valuating, marketing, and selling—for buyers, we put trust back into the act of purchasing sight-unseen with our servicing and authentication process. By emphasizing transparency and placing value on quality, Crown & Caliber has become the preferred marketplace for watch collectors and casual enthusiasts alike.

No comments

Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.