At Joshua Kodner Galleries, we’re often asked what the best items to sell at auction are. While the simple answer is anything of value, the more complex answer goes deeper than that. Antiques, fine artwork, and classic jewelry see the best returns at an auction most of the time. If you’re managing the estate for a deceased loved one and wondering which items of theirs would be worth auctioning, you’re more than welcome to call and ask us for assistance. Otherwise, the following is a
primer on which types of items typically sell well at auctions.
Precious Gems and Jewelry
Jewelry and precious gems also tend to see high sale prices at auctions. No matter what part of the body it’s worn on, jewelry has always symbolized wealth, power, and beauty. In some societies, jewelry was even thought to help prevent evil spirits from entering the body. Gold jewelry can be precious, with the price of gold currently creeping toward $2,000 an ounce, but silver jewelry can also be valuable, though many elements factor into its price. An experienced jewelry auction appraiser can help you evaluate your jewelry and find the right selling venue for it.
Any sports memorabilia, mainly if a star autographs it, is likely to do well at auction. Older items, naturally, are much more valuable since they tend to be rarer and more challenging to keep in good shape. Memorabilia includes cards and advertisement signs, pennants, old programs, and even stadium seating. If you come across anything like this, have it appraised before throwing it out or giving it away, as it could be worth quite a bit of money.
Toys & Comic Books
Antique toys and comic books typically see high returns at auction. Toys from the 1960s and earlier have many collectors and can sell for a great price, especially if an item is rarer and still in good shape. Comic books can also be valuable, especially if they’re still in mint condition.
Watches and timepieces can be other good items to sell at an auction. However, be warned that age isn’t always the primary factor that fetches the dollars in this case. Instead, watches that were once owned and worn by celebrities and those with precious gems such as diamonds tend to drive up the price rather than age or collectability alone.
Fine artwork is another area that usually does very well at auctions. You’d be shocked at how many rare paintings can be found at thrift stores and garage sales. Some older homes throughout the country have had the same paintings on the walls for decades or even centuries. Paintings are one of the first things you should have professionally appraised should you come upon them when going through a loved one’s possessions, since you never know what they might go for. Da Vinci’s Salvator Mundi sold at a 2017 auction for nearly half a billion dollars! While a painting you come across probably won’t sell for quite that much, it can still be extremely valuable, especially to collectors and appreciators of fine art.
Other items that often fetch a good sale price at auction include classic vehicles, Early Chinese & Other Asian Antiques, historical memorabilia, old advertising displays, and rare coins.
Joshua Kodner Galleries is an auctioneer, gemologist, and appraiser based in Fort Lauderdale, FL. Our family has been in the auction house business since the 1940s, and we can help those looking to hold a jewelry auction or fine art auction get the most for these items. When selling items at auction, we’re second to none.
Joshua Kodner is a certified gemologist and a graduate of the Gemologist Institute of America (GIA). His specialties are diamonds and colored stones. Additionally, he is an accredited member of the National Association of Jewelry Appraisers and an experienced art appraiser with expertise in Chinese fine art and other Asian works of art. Contact us today and let us professionally help you determine the value of your property.