Start free trial

Home > News, Articles & Multimedia > Editorial > 18 Things Worth Knowing about the Business of Antiques and Collectibles

18 Things Worth Knowing about the Business of Antiques and Collectibles

by jim sturgill (07/22/08).

In case you didn’t know:

* There are more than 41,500 antiques shops/dealers in the U.S.A.. according to the “2008 Business Reference Guide.”

* Many antique shops have sold for 20% of annual sales plus inventory at cost. This is a rule of thumb and not applicable to all antiques shops.

* Most antiques shops are started by collectors.

* U.S. Custom laws define an antique as 100 years old at the date of purchase.

* Many antiques shops really do not sell antiques. Does that make them used-furniture stores?

* An insurance premium paid by an antiques shop is a deductible expense.

* Insurance premiums paid by a collector may be deductible as an investment expense subject to the 2%-reduction rule.

* Insurance premiums paid by a collector may not be added to basis in order to reduce gain on sale or offset insurance proceeds (Midwest floods).

* A buyer’s fee for purchase of an antique is added to the cost of the antique.

* The IRS taxes the gain on the sale of antiques held for one year or more at 28%.

* The IRS taxes the gain on the sale of stocks held for one year or more at 15%.

* Many occasional antiques sellers’ tax bracket is less than 28%.

* Shop layout and good inventory display will help with antiques sales.

* Tasteful signage will bring customers to your antiques shop.

* A “welcome” to each customer who enters your antiques shop will be remembered.

* A “thank you” to each customer who leaves your antiques shop will be remembered.

* Too much attention given a customer may sour a possible sale.

* Too little attention will drive a customer to another antiques shop.

—Jim Sturgill is a director of WorthPoint and founding partner of Sturgill & Associates LLP, a DC and Baltimore area CPA firm.


Jim Sturgill’s Dollar & Sense Column

Maintain the Value of Your Art, Antiques, or Collectibles Business

Worthology Works Both Ways

Weak Dollar Crushes Antique Shop

Antiques, Art and Collectibles: Sell or Donate

Collecting Can Be Wise Investing

Tax Day: Mileage Pays

More Mileage Cents = More Dollars for Antiques & Collectibles

Antiques Shops Make More Money “Buying Right”

Want a picture icon with your comment? Sign up with Gravatar to get one, or connect with your Facebook or Twitter account.

Looking for even more discussion? Check out the WorthPoint Forums.

Leave a Reply

Connect with Facebook