Rare, high-end pieces of personal property continue to sell well at auctions as collectors look to invest in tangible items that could bring high returns, National Auctioneers Association members say.
“There are people out there that are driven buyers,” says Rich Penn of Rich Penn Auctions, Waterloo, Iowa. “If you can’t identify them, inform them and convert them, you’re missing the market.”
That personal property market, for Penn, is in the antique and collectible side of the business. Some buyers are dodging high-risk or low-return investments and instead finding their money better spent at auction.
Plus, Penn says, his buyers find personal satisfaction in owning high-end collectibles. Average personal property items are selling a little below value, and auction buyers avoid low-end or common items.
Dan Matthews, CAI, GPPA, also targets collectors for his personal property auctions. He specializes in selling petroliana and automobilia.
Matthews recommends Auctioneers in the personal property market become specialists in certain niches. Auto-related items account for 95 percent of his business.
Collectible signs continue to go up in value, he says, and these investments might bring 3 percent to 10 percent returns. Like Penn, he says buyers are more willing to put their money toward the purchase of tangible items, forgoing the stock market and banks.