Buying a Used Rolex Watch can save you thousands of dollars off the new retail price. However, one must be careful since there are many fakes out there, as well as some dishonest sellers who misrepresent the description of the watches on their websites. I have created this small guide to assist with that problem. If you follow these steps it will greatly diminish the chances that you will make a bad buying decision.
There are several things that can be done to make a better purchase. However, the most important ones are: check seller’s reputation, inquiry for model number, ask for first three digits of serial number, and require more pictures if available.
It is very important to check for the seller’s reputation since in that way you are already avoiding possible scams. If you are planning on buying your item on eBay you should check the seller’s feedback , not only the total and percentage of negatives but seller ratings in stars. I would advice that you buy from sellers who have at least 95 % or more and a 4.5 rating or better. If you are using a search engine it is good to know how long the website has been online and see if you can find more about the website . Also it is useful to know if the company has very well explained policies because the most serious companies do have one. Among the things that need to be checked on the policies are if they have a refund policy and a warranty policy . It is always good to know in case that you do not like the timepiece that it can be returned, or can be fixed at no charge in case it stops working. It is good to ask questions by sending e-mails since you can keep a record of everything; however, it is always a good idea to call before closing a deal.
When you are ready to buy your pre-owned Rolex You will need to do some research and find out which is the model number that you are looking for. Then You will have to ask the seller what is the model number of the watch you have interest to see if it matches. The reason for that is that some sellers customize watches in order to make customers believe they are buying a newer watch. For example, let’s say that you are interested in buying a Rolex Date Sapphire Crystal Stainless Steel Quick-Set. You would then do your research and find that the model number is 15200. You then go to a website and look at some pictures and the seller describes the watch as a Date Sapphire Crystal. In reality what you do not know is that the seller posted a model 1500 Plastic Crystal Non-Quick and customized it with sapphire crystal. In other word the seller is offering a much older watch making you believe that the the price is great when it is actually expensive.
The first the digits of the serial number will help you decide what year the watch was fabricated. Therefore if you have to decide for example looking at pictures between two watches that look similar and about the same price then the serial number would be a good deciding factor. For instance if you have a watch R86XXXX(1988) and a S73XXXX(1994), then the second would be the best choice.
In some cases sellers only put one picture of their watches, then it is a good idea to ask for more pictures including one of the back case, of the bracelet, and the movement. Since you do not have the watch in your hands it would be the best way to get a feeling of how good condition the watch is in. Please also make sure that the photos listed are pictures of the actual watch and not stock photos.
With some time and patience You should be able to save thousands of dollars on a beautiful timepiece that will last you for decades. Just follow these steps and You will be more confident in your purchase.
Oscar Messina is an expert in buying and selling Used Rolex watches and other fine watches. Please make sure to visit our Watches Explained blog for watch news, reviews and watch education.