Nation’s 90-year-olds hoard the most valuable watches and jewelry


The incredible value of vintage watches and jewelry gathering dust in the nation’s closets was back in the headlines this month when a US Air Force veteran collapsed after discovering on the Antiques Roadshow that a Rolex watch he bought in the 1970s for $345 is now worth up to $700,000.

In reality, the vet was well aware that the Rolex was very valuable; just not, perhaps, how valuable.

But not all our elders are experts in what their heirlooms are worth. Research by CIRCA, a world-wide specialist in buying pre-owned watches, jewelry and diamonds, has discovered that the older people are that come to sell their treasures, they more valuable they usually are.


People in the 86 to 95 age group have sold watches and jewelery at higher prices to CIRCA than any other group, the company has discovered, with an average price achieved of $9,400.

The youngest sellers, aged 25 and under, averaged just $2,000 for their items.

The correlation between age and the value of average transactions is almost perfect. In fact, CIRCA says that for every year older its customers become, the average transaction value for their sales rises by $100 to $120.



The most common age for resale of luxury watches and jewelry is 56 to 65, with an average transaction value of over $8000.

“With more than a trillion dollars of jewelry gathering dust in jewelry boxes globally, the good news is, that if a piece of jewelry or watch has been in your closet for a number of years, especially if it’s branded or unique, you might just be in for a welcome surprise,” says CIRCA CEO Oren Schneider.

CIRCA has 12 valuation and buying offices world-wide including nine in North America.

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