How to Determine the True Value of a Watch

One of the biggest questions that the members of my Watch Conspiracy community asks me is…

“How do I determine the true value of a watch?”

Having done this for over 15 years now, I have come to identify that certain watch brands have much more value than others and some are just plain crap when it comes to resale.

While many depreciate more than others, there are some numbers to keep in mind to help you decipher how much margin exists in each watch and how to know what they are really worth.

I often use three great strategies for this.

1. The $0.25 – $0.35 cents on the dollar manufacturing rule.

The majority of high end watches like Panerai and Hublot have a cost of 25 to 35 cents on the dollar.

This means that when you are buying a $10,000 watch, it has cost the manufacturer anywhere from $2,500 – $3,500 to make that watch.

In addition to that cost, there is shipping, warranty costs, books and papers cost, followed additional marketing cost and distribution cost, thus bringing the price to $10,000 MSRP.

At that point they begin offering your normal clients somewhere around 20-30% off.

Some manufacturers like Ulysse Nardin will even go as low as 15 to 20 cents on the dollar for manufacturing and sell to their best dealers at 60% off.

These are just various examples of wanted watch brands.

The ones people don’t even like with average movements like Montblanc, Oris, or Raymond Weil, will go even lower to 10 cents for production costs.

2. The 40 to 50% OFF retail rule.

Most authorized dealers buy watches from manufacturers for 40 to 50% the MSRP and then depending on supply and demand, sell them for 20 to 30% off giving themselves a 10 to 20% margin.

To account for their rent, commissions and more, some manufacturers will offer deeper discounts and so on and so forth.

This give you perspective on where the dollar is on a brand new watch.

Knowing that even if you paid 100% of MSRP, your loss the moment you pay for it would be 40% right off the top and an additional 10 to 20% since the watch will no longer be considered brand new.

3. Used watches are even cheaper.

When buying used, there is no exact rule as a watch is only worth what its worth to you or to the next guy who will buy it based on past data of watches sold.

I have bought Hublots at $5,000 and sold at $6,500, and then bought the same watch at $6,800 and sold for $8,200.

Each and every situation is unique, but there are some basic rules you can somewhat keep in mind.

Mid-level resellers usually price their used watches about 15% above what they cost them to acquire them while jewelers under 20%.

The more expensive the model new, the more margin is built into perception for others to believe the value is there.

The Panerai 332, for example, is a very nice $25,000 watch new.

I have bought three of them between $9,000 to $11,000 and made great money on all of them partly because of the low supply and high demand, and partly because there is only so many on the market at any given time.

If all dealers are listing theirs for $15,000 or more as asking prices, then my asking price of $13,000 isn’t that bad regardless that I paid $9,000 or not, giving me over a 30% return.

There is a way to tell what the lowest possible amount is that you should pay for a  watch.

I use this strategy only when unsure or simply unable to determine how little exists on the market.

I call dealers like WatchUWant and other sites like Govberg that buy massive amounts of used watches and offer to trade them my watches to understand what lowball value they put on them.

Then I compare that to previous ones they sold on their site and often conclude that 10% above their offer is the right dollar on that used watch.

This is just one of the crazy strategies I used to determine and understand how to increase my profits with every watch sale.

I teach you in detail how to play the market to make thousands in my training below and how to transfer your wealth instead of spending money on watches but I need you to understand my FREE strategy or you will lose money, sign up here.


Pejman Ghadimi

About The Author

Pejman is the founder of Watch Trading Academy. He has taught over 5,000 students how the lucrative art of watch trading. His strategies help students buy, sell, and own luxury timepieces for free or profit. Want to learn how? Click here to sign-up for his free training.

I’ve had a passion for luxury timepieces my entire life, and it wasn’t until 2011 that I started collecting and flipping those assets with the techniques learned here at Watch Trading Academy. Mastering the intricacies of the watch market, the boutique brands, and how to approach the process have all been essential to making intelligent investment decisions which has resulted in $100k in profits in less than 5 months, be sure to check out how I did it here.


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