If you’re eager to jumpstart your own watch collection and partake in this growing hobby and pastime, be sure to avoid all the following watch collecting mistakes newbie collectors are prone to making!
Watch Collecting Mistake #1: Investing in a Watch You Can’t Really Afford
Never buy a watch that is outside your budget. Besides being just plain fiscally irresponsible, spending too much on a watch will likely leave you too anxious to actually enjoy the wearing the watch; you may feel anxious to scratch or nick it—and devastated when you inevitably do.
While there are vast resale opportunities for luxury watches, you should never consider a watch an investment. It’s nearly impossible to know if a watch is going to appreciate in value; it’s actually far more likely to depreciate.
Moreover, there is really no reason to overspend on a watch. There are many very well-respected Swiss watch brands with very affordable lines that make for great “starter” watches. (Check out a handful of said brands in our blog post here.)
Watch Collecting Mistake #2: Listening Too Much to Other People’s Opinion
Watch collectors often have strong opinions—for better or worse—on different watch styles. We suggest listening to seasoned collectors, reading watch blogs, poking around on watch forums but taking all that with a grain of salt. Ultimately, select the watch that speaks to your personal style.
Watch Collecting Mistake #3: Shopping Exclusively in the Retail Store
Before bee-lining it to the retail store and put down a big chunk of change for a new watch, consider shopping pre-owned. Seasoned watch collectors know they can save a bundle with a pre-owned watch, circumvent that “fresh off the lot” immediate depreciation that comes with taking a new watch out of the store. (To learn more about the benefits of shopping pre-owned, read our post on the topic here.)
This may require slightly more research to vet trusted retailers and ensure the watch is in “Like New” condition, but it will be well worth the effort if you can save hundreds or thousands of dollars.
Watch Collecting Mistake #4: Not Learning About Your Watch
There are two big reasons to understand your watch. The first is a sense of pride in your watch. Knowing how the movement and complications work will make you appreciate your timepiece even more. Also learning the ins and outs of your watch will build your general watch education, making you a savvier and more informed collector.
The second is watch care. Watch models each require different care: some need to be wound every day, some have a power reserve, some can be more easily over-wound than others. The more you know about your watch, the better you can care for it which will ultimately save you from added repairs (and their subsequent service fees) and help increase its resale value should you resell it down the line.
Watch Collecting Mistake #5: Buying a Fake Luxury Watch
If you are serious about being a watch collector, there is nothing to gain by buying a fake designer watch. Watch collectors know their watches and will quickly sniff out your phony watch—leaving you incredibly embarrassed.
Starting your collection off on a bad foot like this will also tarnish your reputation. The watch community is a tight-knit one and it’s very common for collectors to trade watches directly amongst themselves. But, if you’re known as an imposter collector, it’s going to be tricky to ingratiate yourself to fellow collectors.
There are many other legal reasons to never buy a fake luxury watch and we delve further into those very real dangers here.
For more tips on how to build your watch collection, check out these blog posts: