The numbers are in and as this decade comes to an end, we have seen the drop in collecting, and the majority end of the “collector”. It is not that collecting will actually end, but it will be much more refined, and collectors will be much more discriminating. For the last several years we have seen up-scale auction houses trying to keep the cash flow going by catering to the masses, or at least a larger group of the new buyers.
Those who can afford blue-chip purchases will remain. When we say “Blue-Chip” we are referring to a very niche group of items. In art, it is determined by the artist, the subject matter, and the provenance proving that it can be confirmed as authentic. Basically, all other blue-chips collectibles will be determined by first, condition, then rarity, then price.
The trend that we have seen for years now has been driven by price. Shows like American Pickers, Antiques Road Show, and Storage Wars, has attracted individuals who are looking to hit a jackpot. The result has been masses buying cheap, trying to sell average items at old pricing, flooding the market, and then compete in the marketplace by reducing prices, and continuing to reduce prices, until the value of the item, in general, is bankrupt. Who wants to collect and invest in an item that has dropped? NO ONE. Of course, we have readers who will say “oh but now is the time to buy! This person doesn’t know what he is talking about” – I call BS and the “expert” who is making this statement is living in the past like the collection they posses and is trying to start a buzz in hope of getting someone interested in it and trying to find anyone who may pay some type of money for it. With so many venues to sell items such as Facebook Marketplace, Craigslist, and of course eBay, along with unlimited reference material thanks to the internet, owners can sell their items themselves. They may not know what they have but some do.
The majority of new buyers with disposable income are now looking for practicality in the items they purchase at auction. They want something that enhances their lifestyle, their décor, and that they even perhaps can re-purpose. The price for the perfect piece that meets their needs is not an issue for the most part. They want perfection which is based upon their needs.
To sum it up, there is an abundance of items once thought to be collectible and sellable that no longer of value. There are
fewer buyers. There are more sellers currently but will dwindle in the first few years of this new decade. We will see “Blue-Chip” investment art and collectibles rise in price, and items of practicality that possess perfection increase. We will see the market change dramatically and the realization that what is not desirable now – will in fact no longer be desirable monetarily.
Have a Happy, Healthy, and Profitable New Year – New Decade!