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If you have a used luxury watch that you’re no longer wearing, why not turn it into cash or credit instead of leaving it to gather dust at the bottom of a drawer. In the pre-owned market, there are three main ways to do that: selling a used watch, consigning a used watch, and trading a used watch. While all great options, it’s important to decide which one is best for you. So if you’ve ever wondered what’s the difference between selling, consigning, or trading my used watch, read on to find out. 

Selling, Consigning, or Trading My Used Watch
What’s the difference between selling, consigning, and trading a used watch?

Selling My Used Watch

As its name suggests, selling a used watch is when a buyer pays you directly for your timepiece. This is typically the fastest way to get cash for your watch without having to wait too long. The buyer will quote you a price for the watch and if you accept the offer, it’s a matter of sending in your timepiece and waiting for a quick money transfer. 

One of the main benefits of going this route is that you get paid faster without having to wait for the dealer to resell the watch to an end consumer. What’s more, it’s oftentimes the simplest option since it’s just a matter of agreeing to a price, sending in the watch, and then getting your cash. This is the best option if you’re just looking to sell your watch as fast as possible. Some top brands that sell for the highest prices in the pre-owned market include pre-owned Rolex, pre-owned Patek Philippe, pre-owned Audemars Piguet, and pre-owned Cartier.

Selling My Used Watch
Selling a used watch is the fastest way to get paid

Consigning My Used Watch

Consigning a watch is slightly different from selling the watch outright. Consigning a watch means that a dealer will list your watch for sale at the best price for the market and for an agreed amount of time. Then you will get paid a percentage of the selling price once the watch is sold. 

While consigning a watch is a longer process than outright selling, it’s a good way to maximize how much money you get paid for your pre-owned watch. This is the best option for you if you’re not in a hurry to sell your watch and are willing to wait a little longer for a bigger payout. 

Consigning My Used Watch
Consigning a watch typically has the biggest payout

Trading My Used Watch

When you trade your pre-owned timepiece, you do not receive any cash at all, but rather, credit towards another watch you want to buy. This process works with a dealer that buys and sells used luxury watches but not with one that exclusively buys pre-owned watches. 

This is a good option if you already have your eye on a particular watch and want some savings off the sale price. Also, trade-in values are oftentimes higher than consigning and selling values, which is a fantastic benefit.  In fact, trading watches is a strategy many watch enthusiasts have to regularly upgrade their watch collection. It offers a great way to consistently add new watches to your rotation while not having to spend too much money since you use other watches towards the purchase of a fresh one. 

Trading My Used Watch
You can trade in an older watch model for a newer one

Selling, Consigning, or Trading?

To summarize, if you need to get paid as soon as possible, selling your pre-owned watch outright is the better option. Alternatively, if you’re not in a rush and prefer to get a larger potential payout, consigning your pre-owned watch is the way to go. Finally, if you want to buy another watch, then trading in your unwanted used watch is the best choice.

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The Purchasing & Consignment Division of Gray & Sons


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