Why the Pre-owned Luxury Watch Market is Booming
Wednesday - 03 May 2023
If you’re in the throws of saving up for a luxury watch, you may have explored the prices of pre-owned luxury watches versus the price of a new watch. In some cases, you can expect to pay a lot more for a used model than you would for a brand-new one. But why are consumers happy to pay more for a used watch than a new one?
It’s a pretty good question and one that requires an answer that looks at more than one factor alone. Die-hard Omega fans or collectors of Rolex, Patek Philippe, or Breitling for example, will agree that a watch is rarely worn for the sole use of telling the time. Wearing a luxury watch is much more than that. It is a statement piece that reflects wealth and style and shows that a person takes pride in his or her appearance.
You can’t simply walk into any favoured jewellery store or official watch stockist and get the luxury watch you dream of anymore. The demand has grown and prices have increased. Waiting lists too. It is thought that some luxury watches can take up to a year to produce and with that comes a very undesirable waiting list of several months to possible years. This is because as luxury watches have grown in popularity, many luxury watch brands have struggled to keep up with this demand. Their production can not match the sheer volume of watch enthusiasts wanting to own the next must-have timepiece. But if you have the disposable income and you’re ready to invest in a watch, you’re probably going to look for your favourite model on the pre-owned market, because you know it’s going to be readily available there. More people going to the pre-owned market has meant that prices for some iconic luxury watches have sky-rocketed in recent years.
Recent statistics have shown that 29% of buyers have paid more for a pre-owned luxury watch than they have a brand-new model at retail price. 40% of these consumers admitted that their reason for doing so was to avoid long waiting lists. This boom in the secondary market reflects that this sector is growing faster than the retail sector for some models. Rare styles also warrant a higher price tag because there are fewer available on the secondary market, not forgetting, of course, those that have been discontinued.
The appeal of a pre-owned luxury watch
Popular models that are considered icons of the luxury watch industry often have a cult-like following and have been manufactured by some of the world’s most revered names in watchmaking. It makes sense also, that more value is added to a pre-loved watch if it looks worn and vintage. Collectors may be looking for signs that a watch has aged. Features like a faded dial or a worn case with an aged patina may be desirable to someone who collects vintage models since you simply can’t buy a watch that authentically boasts these features naturally. Think about it. How much cooler would it sound if you could say “This watch I’m wearing is 30 years older than me?”.
The truth is, pre-owned watches have been an upward trend for over a decade now and the rise looks set to continue. During the pandemic the stock market went crazy and people had a lot more capital. If the pre-owned luxury watch market rose due to the pandemic alone, we would likely expect to see a decline now, however, sales continue to rise and the demand for some key models is higher than ever. Enthusiasts are wanting to invest in assets and luxury products, namely watches, hence why some pre-owned watches are almost trebling their retail price currently. And when will the secondary market diminish, you ask? Probably when our love for luxury watches dies. Never.
You can view our ever-growing online range of pre-owned luxury watches online at Jura Watches here. Our extensive online store comprises industry-leading names such as TAG Heuer, Omega, Breitling, Tudor and Bremont. For more information on our pre-owned luxury watches - including prices, availability and online finance options - you can call and speak to a member of our Jura Watches sales team on 01335 453453.