Clocks & Compass

A Guide to Buying Antique Clocks at Auctions

Buying Antique Clocks

Are you interested in purchasing an antique clock at an auction? If so, this blog post is for you! Here, you will find a comprehensive guide to help you understand the process of buying antique clocks at auctions. From researching the market value to attending the auction in person, we will discuss everything you need to know to get the most out of your auction experience. Whether you are a first-time buyer or a seasoned collector, you will gain valuable insights into the world of antique clocks and the auctions that sell them. So let’s get started and learn how to find and purchase the perfect antique clock!

Know Your Goal

Before attending an auction for antique clocks, it is important to know what kind of clock you are looking for. Are you interested in a specific era or style? Do you want a mantel clock, wall clock, grandfather clock, or something else? Knowing exactly what you want will help you focus your search and make the most of your time at the auction. Additionally, you should be aware of any special features or styles of antique clocks that you are interested in, such as designs from the Baroque period or intricate hand-painted scenes on the clock face. By being clear about your goal and having a good understanding of the different types of antique clocks available, you can easily narrow down your choices when searching for the perfect piece.

 The great thing about antique clocks is that they are all unique. They may have the same style, but their features can vary greatly, which makes it fun to search for the perfect clock. Look for special markings on the clock, such as manufacturer signatures or dates, as these can help you identify an antique clock’s origins and provide clues as to its value. If possible, try to get an expert opinion from an auctioneer or clock dealer who can help you accurately determine an antique clock’s worth.

Do Your Research

Before attending an auction, it’s important to do your research on antique clocks. It can be useful to understand the type of clock you are interested in, its value, and the availability of similar pieces. This can help you set realistic expectations and a budget before bidding. Knowing the history of a clock and its maker can also be valuable information. 

Begin by searching online for antique clocks similar to what you are looking for. This can give you an idea of their value and potential prices at auction. Search for a range of clocks from different makers and styles to get an idea of the variety available. Consider reading reviews from experts in the field to gain insight into a particular maker or model. You should also look at SeoAntiques for information about the clock’s provenance or previous owners, if applicable.

It is important to note any damages or defects on antique clocks when doing research. Many clocks may have been repaired in the past, so consider researching repair techniques or even finding a qualified clockmaker who can help inspect and value the piece. This can be helpful when determining the value of the clock and estimating a budget before bidding.

Antique Clock
Antique Clock

Set a Budget

When looking to buy antique clocks at auctions, it is important to set a budget. Doing this will help you to remain within your means, while also ensuring you don’t get carried away in the excitement of the auction. Researching the value of antique clocks ahead of time can help you determine a fair and reasonable budget for the piece you are looking for. It is essential to stick to your budget and not exceed it; even if you are emotionally attached to a particular piece. You must also factor in any other additional costs, such as shipping and handling fees, before placing a bid. Being prepared and having a clear idea of how much money you can afford will make the process of buying antique clocks at auctions much easier.

Inspect the Clock

When attending an auction for antique clocks, it’s important to inspect the clock closely before making a bid. Look for any obvious signs of damage such as dents, scratches, or cracks in the case or face. Ensure that all the parts are present and in good condition – hands, pendulum, weights, and key. Listen to the sound of the movement – it should run quietly and evenly. Check that the clock keeps time properly. 

Ask questions if you’re not sure. It’s also important to ensure that all the necessary paperwork and documents are available, as this can add considerable value to the clock. If you’re buying a rare or valuable piece, it may be worth hiring an expert to inspect it first.

If You’re Interested in online antique shopping then you also like to know The Complete Guide to Antique and Collectible Shopping Online


When it comes to bidding on antique clocks at auctions, it’s important to be prepared. Know the maximum amount that you’re willing to pay for a particular item before the auction starts, and stick to it. This will help to ensure that you don’t get carried away and overbid. It’s also a good idea to arrive early and inspect the antique clocks on offer as carefully as possible. This will give you a better sense of what you’re bidding on and how much it is likely to go for. If you have any questions about the clocks, ask the auctioneer. 

When it’s time to bid, be sure to raise your hand or call out the price that you’re willing to pay. Make sure that the auctioneer acknowledges your bid before continuing. Once the bidding has stopped, the highest bidder will win the item. If you win the auction, remember that there may be additional fees to be paid such as buyer’s premium and sales tax.

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