While the luxury watch industry may be facing some turbulent times, the secondary market for Rolex watches is booming. And this is great news for anyone who is thinking about selling Rolex watches.
Universally recognized, Rolex is by far the most in-demand brand in both the retail and secondary market for luxury watches. This higher demand means that selling a Rolex can be easier than selling other fine timepieces. If you’ve ever wondered what’s the best way to sell a Rolex, read our in-depth guide on how to get the most for your pre-owned watch.
I WANT TO SELL MY ROLEX, NOW WHAT?
First things first. Before you immediately dive into selling a Rolex watch, there are a few strategies that will help you secure the best price and experience possible. Keep these below points in mind for a smoother process when selling your pre-owned Rolex watch.
- Figure out the reference numbers and serial numbers of the Rolex to sell
- Find accompanying box and papers of the Rolex to sell
- Research secondhand values and understand why they are not the same as retail
- Take pictures of the Rolex to sell
- Find a reputable dealer to sell your Rolex to
- REFERENCE AND SERIAL NUMBERS
If you have the accompanying paperwork of the Rolex timepiece you want to sell, then finding the reference and serial numbers is easy. If however, you longer have the paperwork, then you’ll find to find them on the watch case itself by removing the bracelet.
|What it is||Where to find it if you no longer have paperwork|
|Reference Number||Sometimes also called the style number or model number—identifies the watch type. For example, the number can indicate if it’s a stainless steel Submariner, a yellow gold Daytona, a platinum Day-Date, and so on. This number holds vital information about any Rolex watch, so having it handy is important.||The Rolex reference number is engraved on the watch case at the 12 o’clock position in between the lugs.|
|Serial Number||This is exclusive to your watch only. It’s worth noting that you should avoid sharing your serial number online (via descriptions or pictures) because of counterfeiters. This is why you’ll often see the serial number partially blacked out on pictures.||The serial number can be found in two different spots depending on the age of the Rolex watch that you’re selling. Prior to 2005, the serial number will be in between the lugs on the exact opposite side of the watch case at the 6 o’clock position. Post-2005, the serial number is engraved on the rehaut (the space between the crystal and the dial where it’s engraved with ROLEX ROLX ROLEX) at the 6 o’clock position.|
- ORIGINAL BOX AND PAPERS
The best way to sell a Rolex watch is to have the original box and papers along with it. Papers can include the watch’s warranty card, manual, receipt, and service history documentation. Not only will box and papers get you a higher selling price, but it will also assure the buyer of the watch’s authenticity. What’s more, any servicing documentation can give the buyer a window into the watch’s condition and history.
Nevertheless, if you don’t have the original box and papers of the pre-owned Rolex you’re selling, fret not. It’s certainly still possible to sell a used Rolex without them. But understand that this will reduce the selling value of the watch.
It is always important to do your research and understand the difference between retail and resell price. The bottom line is that you not will earn the same amount when selling your Rolex watch.
Sell prices are, of course, always lower than buy prices. This is because any damage to the watch, however slight, will have to be repaired. Even if the watch is “like new”, it is no longer in fact new. And much like a car, once purchased it depreciates in value. Of course there are exceptions for rare and highly desirable watches in fantastic condition.
- HIGH RESOLUTION PHOTOS
It’s essential to set aside some time to take clear, high-resolution images if you’re selling Rolex watches. Take pictures of the front and back of the watch and ideally also take a photo of the warranty card. These pictures will allow the buyer to better ascertain the condition, and consequently the value, of the pre-owned Rolex watch for sale.
- SELL TO A REPUTABLE BUYER
This is by far the most important decision you’ll make when selling a Rolex watch. While there are several outlets where you can sell a used Rolex, we recommend against the following options:
- Online auction sites: This can be a long process in which you will not benefit from the guidance of a watch expert.
- Craigslist: Meeting a complete stranger while in possession of an expensive Rolex watch is never a good idea.
- Pawn Shops: Not only will these types of establishments always lowball the seller, they often don’t have the expertise and knowledge about specific watch brands.