Framed Iwo Jima photograph

I enjoy educating and appraising your stuff at my events using my Ph.D. to teach and entertain. People always comment that I have a fun job, and I’m lucky that I do. I appreciate the positive feedback, but what most don’t see is the angry emails I often get. One which sparked this blog post about negotiating when shopping for antiques.

Coca Cola bottle

In another blog post, I responded to a post from my Facebook page about antiques appraisers placing high values on pieces.

Recently I got an irate email from an antiques dealer telling me that I should stop advising people to negotiate on the price when shopping for antiques. She complained that she has to find the piece, buy the piece, clean the piece, display the piece in her shop and that the internet market place has hurt antiques shops. She wanted me to stop telling shoppers to negotiate.

Of course, I know many antiques dealers who are happy when their customers negotiate since many price their items accordingly and are trying to work with the buyer to make a sale. Many antiques dealers also use the internet like you should too to buy pieces low and sell them high for their business. Antiques dealers make a lot of money doing this, except the one from this angry email, I guess. For example, read this blog post where I recount a true story of an antiques reseller flipping a 60,000 dollar glass bottle bought on eBay.

If you are shopping for antiques, I’m going to disregard the angry email I received and suggest these three helpful tips to negotiate when shopping for antiques.

1. Ask For It

When shopping for art or antiques, don’t be afraid to ask for a discount. Most of the time you will get it. The piece you like might have sat in the shop for months and the dealer is anxious to unload it.

2. Don’t get Emotional

Once you show that you are in love with an antique, your negotiating power is gone.

3. Cash and Carry

Always carry cash as offering the green stuff, instead of a credit card, may seal the deal. Cash does not incur additional transaction fees like credit cards do for the antiques seller.

I hope these tips help. Please share this post with your friends and fellow antique shop and flea market shoppers. Read more tips about negotiating when buying jewelry.