How Luxury Watches Buyers Evaluate and Purchase Timepieces

February 7th, 2024

Insider Secrets: How Luxury Watch Buyers Evaluate and Purchase Timepieces

The pre-owned luxury watch market has been growing exponentially. Experts predict the pre-owned luxury watch market will account for half of the global watch market within the next 5 to 10 years. Luxury watch buyers look for these important factors to determine the value of a pre-owned  luxury timepiece. Let's take a closer look. 


Trustworthy Luxury Watch Buyers: Best Deals Awaits
Audemars Piguet Jules Audemars in 18k rose gold with full pave diamond case, diamond lugs, diamond bezel, diamond dial and diamond winding crown on black alligator strap. Ref 15159OR.ZZ.D002CR.01


If you own a luxury watch and you are  looking up online to “  sell my luxury watch “ then It is crucial to understand how buyers of used luxury watches evaluate and purchase  timepieces so you can get ready. 


Understanding the Basics of Luxury Watches

A luxury watch is a timepiece that uses premium, high-quality materials with complex, advanced movements, and cutting-edge styles. They are often partially hand-made by seasoned artisans. 

Luxury watch manufacturers go beyond and above to ensure superior quality, performance, precision, and attention to detail. In short, luxury watches are premium products. 

It is also important to note that “luxury” is closely linked with the brand that manufactures it.  The stamp of luxury is something watch manufacturers do not get. They earn it!

There are four main types of luxury watches, each with distinct designs and features: 


Patek Philippe Neptune Watch Buyer
Dress Patek Philippe Neptune 4881/1 watch is made out of yellow gold on a 18k bracelet with a 18k Deployant buckle
Tudor Tuddle Prince Oyster Date Submariner Watch buyer
Tudor Tuddle Prince Oyster Date Submariner with custom blue diamond dial and revolving custom submariner diving bezell. Ref 7021/0
Sport Cartier Roadster Watch Buyer
Sport Cartier Roadster W62006X6 watch is made out of Stainless steel on a Stainless Steel bracelet with a Stainless Steel Deployant buckle
Omega Museum Collection watch Buyer
Omega Museum Collection "Pilot 1938" Aquarella in stainless steel and a mother-of-pearl dial with cathedral hands & arabic lume hour markers. Ref 5779.71.56

Dress Watches.  Dress watches are traditional and elegant. Their clean and streamlined design makes them pair perfectly with formal attires. 

Some popular dress watches are: 

  • Rolex Datejust 16233
  • Rolex Day-Date 118395BR
  • Rolex Cellini 5116
  • Cartier Ballon Bleu we9009z3
  • Cartier Tank Louis Cartier w1560017/3280


Diving Watches. Diving watches are sturdy timepieces that can withstand deep sea depths while allowing divers to time their oxygen supply. 

Some popular diving watches are:

  • Rolex Submariner 116610
  • Rolex Sea-Dweller 116660
  • Rolex Oyster Perpetual 124300
  • Cartier Calibre W7100043


Sports Watches. Sports watches are water-resistant, rugged, and built to withstand countless adventures while maintaining timekeeping precision and accuracy.

Some popular sports watches are:

  • Rolex GMT Master II Pepsi 126710
  • Rolex Yacht-Master 126655
  • Rolex Explorer II 1655
  • Patek Philippe Nautilus 5980r-001

Pilot Watches.  Pilot watches typically come with rotating bezels and chronographs for precise timing. Pilot watches were crafted initially for aviators and came with easy-to-read dials and large cases.

Some popular pilot watches are:

  • Rolex Air King 114210
  • Cartier Santos AC14.30gr


Evaluating Luxury Watches

Luxury watch buyers near me evaluate the luxury timepiece you are selling based on the following criteria: 


Luxury Watches Buyers: Turning Time into Treasure
Rolex Day-Date 1803 watch is made out of yellow gold on a 14k bracelet with a 18k Deployant buckle


  • Brand and model. The expert buyer will determine the brand and model of the item to determine if it is sought after in the market. 
  • Reference number or model number. The specific style number of a luxury watch tells about its specific model, material, size, color, bracelet type, and other information about the watch. 

    Luxury watches from the same brand may have different values because of the different editions manufactured over the last several years. The specific edition of the watch can be determined through reference number.
  • Brand recognition. Luxury watch brands are highly regarded and easily recognizable. Owning a luxury watch from a prestigious brand may serve as status symbol, investment, addition to your wealth basket or just as collectable. No matter the reason, luxury brand timepieces are always desirable and easy to sell. Samples of the top  brands: 
  • Audemars Piguet
  • Patek Philippe
  • Cartier
  • Rolex
  • Omega
  • Breitling
  • Vacheron Constantin
  • Ulysse Nardin
  • Hublot
  • Jaeger LeCoultre


  • Authenticity. Watches are inspected for authenticity meaning they get checked for any custom parts or alterations. Custom parts may decrease the value of the watch, especially when they are aftermarket parts. These parts are made by 3rd party companies independent of the watch manufacturer.

    However, the presence of the original box, certificate of authenticity, and original receipts can increase its value.
  • Materials.
  • High-quality materials. Luxury watches are always made from high-quality materials such as high-grade stainless steel, precious metals (gold or platinum), and premium leather.

    Timepieces made from 18k gold or platinum typically have a higher value than watches made from stainless steel or titanium. Precious metals in the watch are a major determiner of its value.

    The value of the diamonds and other gemstones added to the watch’s value will increase the overall value of the luxury watch.

    Here are some examples watches with diamonds dials or bezels
  • Audemars Piguet Jules Audemars 15159OR.ZZ.D002CR.01
  • Patek Philippe Perpetual Calendar 3990j-010
  • Rolex Datejust 68288

Luxury timepieces with original watch parts have higher value than those with custom parts. For example, a Rolex with a custom diamond bezel will have a lower value compared to the same model with an original diamond bezel.

  • Movements. Luxury watches are typically powered by mechanical movements crafted with excellent accuracy and precision. These movements may have complications such as phases, chronographs, and tourbillons.

    The "movement" of a luxury watch is what makes the timepiece go. Luxury timepieces have mechanical movements because of their high level of craftsmanship and quality. A mechanical watch movement is skillfully created by expert craftsmen and contains intricate tiny components that work together to power the watch.

    Mechanical movements are more expensive than quartz movements because they are more complex. They offer more features than the more affordable watch movements.

    Here are some mechanical watches:
  • Omega Speedmaster 31133443201001
  • Rolex GMT-Master II 126720VTNR
  • Age. The newest model of luxury watches can be very expensive because of the brand's prestige, use of high-quality materials, and advanced technology. These watches often feature cutting-edge design, craftsmanship, and complications, making them highly desirable for collectors and watch enthusiasts.

    Vintage or antique watches can also be very expensive due to their rarity, historical significance, and unique features. Vintage watches are typically defined as those that are over 20 years old, while antique watches are usually over 100 years old. These watches may have been produced in limited numbers, or may have unique design elements that make them highly sought after by collectors. They may also have a rich history, such as being owned by a famous person or being used during a significant event.
  • Condition. The condition of the watch. Is it working correctly? Does it keep precise time?

    The condition of the luxury watch refers to whether it is in running condition and if there are any hard scratches.
  • Rarity. The more unique a timepiece, the more its value increases. A luxury watch no longer offered for sale may have a higher worth or if there is a high demand. An example of the highly collectable watch is Vintage Rolex Daytona Paul Newman
  • Collectability. The collectability increases the value of a luxury watch because it adds to its rarity and uniqueness. When a particular model or brand of watch becomes highly sought after by collectors, the demand for that watch increases, while the supply remains the same or even decreases due to the limited number of pieces available.

    In addition, the history and legacy associated with a particular watch brand or model can also contribute to its collectibility and value. For example, watches that were used in significant historical events, or those that were worn by famous people, are highly sought after by collectors because they have a unique story and connection to the past.

    Here are some collectable watches
  • Rolex Submariner 116619
  • Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Offshore 26262OK.OO.D002CA.01
  • Patek Philippe Nautilus 5980r-001


  • Investment Value. Luxury watches can have a significant investment value. The value of luxury watches can increase over time due to the watch’s rarity, collectability, brand reputation, and historical significance. 
  • Market Conditions 
  • Current market trends
  • Consumer demand
  • Value on the second-hand market
  • Here are some of the most popular brands and models
    - Rolex: Submariner, Daytona, and GMT-Master II
    - Patek Philippe: Nautilus and Aquanaut
    - Audemars Piguet: Royal Oak line
  • Geneva Seal. Some luxury watches carry the Geneva Seal representing the highest degree of the horological quality.

    A luxury watch with the Geneva Seal has its watch movements designed and assembled within Geneva, Switzerland and has adhered to strict technical requirements.


Purchasing Luxury Watches

Luxury watches buyers purchase used timepieces either online or in person, directly in the showrooms.


Luxury Watches Buyers: Where Elegance is Appreciated
Classic Vacheron Constantin 222 46003 watch is made out of Gold and steel on a 18k bracelet with a Stainless Steel Clasp buckle


Here are some factors to consider when purchasing luxury watches: 

  • Condition
  • Authenticity
  • Brand and model 
  • Age
  • Type of movements
  • Materials
  • Rarity. 

If you plan to sell your luxury watch, do some research because these factors are what luxury watch buyers will consider when evaluating it.


Insider Secrets for Evaluating and Purchasing Luxury Watches

The secret of accurately evaluating and purchasing used luxury watches rests on the expertise of professional and expert luxury watch buyers. These experts are knowledgeable on all aspects of luxury watches, allowing them to evaluate your timepiece accurately.  

To get the most money when you sell your luxury watch, ensure it is in good condition, and you have the original box and original purchase paper, and certificate of authenticity. is a dedicated online platform to buy luxury watches and jewelry from the public. Gray & Sons Jewelers, the parent company  has been in the jewelry and watch business since 1980.

If you plan to sell your luxury watch. is an experienced and trustworthy luxury watch buyer. It has in-house expert watch buyers and Swiss trained watchmakers on staff to properly evaluate your timepiece. 

Selling your watch is an easy process: 

  • Request a quote to know how much your watch is worth. 
  • Send your luxury watch insured and via registered mail using our EasyShip box. 
  •  Qualified experts will inspect the condition and authenticity of your luxury watch. 
  • Once everything is finalized, you will quickly receive your check or wire payment. 


Luxury Watch Brands We Buy