The Unusual Investment in Luxury Items: 10 Odd Things That Appreciate in Value

Vintage classic american car in Havana, Cuba

If you’ve got spare cash, Forbes says the worst thing to do with it is keep it in your checking account. With inflation exceeding 2% even an interest-bearing account won’t keep up with inflation. In fact, you’re losing money.

What should you do with any spare cash? One would think luxury items are the last thing you’d consider. Yet, these unusual things that appreciate in value may be your best investment!

1. Paintings

When something is rare and many people want it becomes valuable. This is the case with the greatest works of art. Demand outstrips supply many times over, hence the high prices.

The challenge is that the art world is subject to fashion. Some art is popular for a few years and then tastes change. It becomes less popular and less valuable.

The trick is to spot the slow-burning winners that are rising and avoid the out of fashion losers. Buying on the up and selling at the peak is the hope. Easier said than achieved.

The beauty of investing in art is that you get to have a lovely picture on your wall. If you like it then you can enjoy looking at it. You can’t enjoy the wine you buy as an investment or the diamond stored in a vault.

2. Handbags

A classic handbag by Channel is a great investment. The rarity and cache of the brand assure the wise investor of that. Don’t expect to make money on other expensive bags, especially if you use them.

3. Bottles of Wine

Fine Burgundy wine may go down very well with French cuisine. It could also be a good investment. For a wine to be a good investment it must have a market, it must not be past it’s best, it must be the genuine thing and it must be stored properly.

Assuming you have everything else in place the best market for wine currently is in Asian markets. As a result, your fine Burgundy may well be a great investment. Make sure it’s a top wine and a special vintage and the returns could be spectacular if current markets are anything to go by.

4. Pair of Shoes

When you look at the price tag on the top luxury shoes, you have to nervous about wearing them anywhere other than a red carpet. With shoes exceeding $1,000 dollars in price Christian Louboutin seems to have created a unique investment opportunity. The red soled beauties seem to hold their value.

Don’t damage the iconic red sole. Other shoes just don’t compare. Second-hand designer shoes don’t retain their value unless they’re special in some other way, like Dorothy’s red slippers from the Wizard of Oz, insured for $1 million.

5. Some Cars

For most people after their house, their car is their most expensive purchase. While your house might appreciate in value, your car is likely to be a money pit. Not only does it cost money to run and maintain but it loses value from the moment you buy it.

But how good an investment is a classic car? The rarer the car is, the more valuable it is. The more expensive a car was when it was first sold the more likely it will be a good investment later in life.

Vintage cars have outperformed stock markets in recent years. Something else. They’re a lot more fun to own than a share certificate.

6. Small Change

Check your pockets. Any change? If you have a Lincoln penny in amongst your small change it could be worth $1.7 million.

Money can worth much more than its face value. A rare coin that is sought by collectors can be worth a fortune. Coins are valuable if they are in good condition, old or freshly minted.

It’s important to do your research and check the provenance of any coins you are considering buying for investment purposes. Most people know that a rare coin could be worth something so dealers play on this. They may indicate that a coin is rare when actually it is not.

If you do invest after independent advice, keep your coin in perfect condition and secure. Better still buy a commemorative set from the U.S. Mint. The returns won’t be spectacular but they are generally positive.

7. Guitars

If you found a violin in your attic, might you wonder for a moment if it was a Stradivarius worth millions of dollars? He only made 1,100 violins. Only 650 of them are known to have survived.

It’s far more realistic to consider the investment opportunity in a more modern musical instrument. Consider the humble guitar. Not so humble when you think that once a guitar has been played by a famous rock star it can rocket in value.

Blackie, a Fender Stratocaster assembled from the remains of three other guitars by Eric Clapton, was just such an investment opportunity. It probably cost a few hundred dollars to make but after it had been in Eric’s hands it sold at Christie’s Auction House for $959,500. All you have to do is spot the right guitar and the right guitarist and then watch the magic happen.

8. Classic Toys

Old toys have a double appeal. They are old and rare so that gives them scarcity value. They also have immense charm, evoking sentimental feelings about childhood and play.

While every kid was buying Beanie Babies and paying extra for the rare ones they should have been thinking “bears”. The Beanie Babies came and went, huge numbers in the market mean that they have no value. The Steiff bear keeps growing in value.

With these ancient German bears being traded at up to $10,000 they are the wise investors choice.

9. Watches

A Swiss watch is a thing of beauty and technical wizardry too. Do they hold their value? Not all of them but Rolex, Patek Philippe and Tudor watches can.

Rarity is what drives the value. An old, rare Rolex in perfect working order might be a good buy if you get a good deal. Keep it in the hope that it will get rarer still.

In the meantime, you won’t want to wear it. The condition is everything and you’ll kick yourself if you scratch it while doing the washing up. Better to buy a beautiful Gucci watch and enjoy wearing it.

10. Jewels

Buying a jewel is complicated by the fact that they are often bought in a setting. This means you are buying at retail prices and with an added margin for the presentation. It will be unlikely that you make money on such a bauble.

The way to make money is to buy at wholesale prices. Buy a diamond on its own and keep it safe. That way your investment will grow.

Diamonds are valuable because of their rarity. Mining is strictly controlled and is unlikely to erode the price of existing diamonds. A diamond could be your best friend in a few years.

Beautiful Things That Appreciate in Value

Many of these beautiful things that appreciate in value come with a risk. It’s easy to get stung and buy at the wrong end of the market or simply to buy a dud. Buyers should always beware.

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