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Buying Guides Understanding New and Pre-Owned Purchasing

Purchasing a luxury timepiece is in many ways like purchasing a fine automobile. When choosing the person or dealer from whom you’ll make your purchase there are several factors that cannot be overlooked.  The most important of these factors is choosing to work with a reputable dealer, and when it comes to watches, an authorized dealer.

Buying Pre-Owned

Purchasing Pre-Owned Watches is Easy with GovbergWith pre-owned timepieces, purchasing from an authorized dealer is equally as important. Unless you were to open a watch yourself, there is really no way to know what lies within.  The older a watch is, the more likely it has been opened up and serviced by different sources over the years.  Authorized dealers are more likely to be discerning purchasers of pre-owned watches in the first place and the good ones will have watchmakers inspect all watches before they are sold, and stand behind your purchase with a warranty.

There is an attraction in pre-owned watches that are in mint or excellent condition, and it is possible to find legacy and vintage pieces that are typically harder to find or are discontinued.  The pre-owned watch market is rapidly growing and in your quest, you will most likely head to eBay in addition to other online retailers.  While there are many reputable watch dealers on eBay, there are also many questionable watches for sale by individuals.  Some watches you come across from independent sellers may have after-market additions such as diamond dials or special bezels which hurt the original value of the watch.  Be sure to do your research on any pre-owned watch dealer or site.  Look at their reputation and feedback and feel free to always get your watch authenticated by a trusted service center.  You can also ask them questions about the watch or ask for more details.  When purchasing from a dealer who has been authorized and backed by the manufacturers themselves, you can rest assured that any questionable pieces have been dealt with properly and that you are getting what you paid for, no questions asked- it’s as simple as that.

Govberg Jewelers

Govberg Jewelers is unique when compared to some other pre-owned retailers.  We are an authorized retailer of 50 brands to sell new watches, have an in-house watch repair service, and have an ever expanding inventory of pre-owned watches.  Govberg also offers the opportunity to trade-in an old watch you no longer wear and to put the amount towards the purchase of your next watch.  In our pre-owned inventory each timepiece goes through a rigorous inspection process before making its way to our display cases (and website). This process takes place at our service facility where an advanced team of authorized watchmakers provides any service required to bring the watch to proper specifications. The first inspection by our watchmakers confirms and ensures the complete authenticity of the watch, followed by a complete testing of the watch’s timekeeping and functionality. After these tests and any necessary servicing, the watches are cleaned and new OEM straps/links will be ordered and installed. Only at this time will a watch make its way to be displayed for sale. To further demonstrate our confidence in these pieces, all watches (that no longer fall under the original manufacturer’s warranty) will come complete with a 15-month Govberg guarantee against any mechanical problems that may arise.

Buying New Watches

Buy new watches in storeThere are many dealers online who offer fine timepieces, both new and used, for very competitive prices, which authorized dealers often cannot compete with. As attractive as these offers may seem to the uneducated buyer, one must be very careful in placing their trust in an unauthorized, or “gray market” dealer. The easiest way to identify a grey market dealer is to look at their advertised pricing. Any dealer who advertises a new watch for ANY price lower than the manufacturer’s retail pricing is a grey market dealer; authorized dealers are not permitted to do this.

Reading more closely as well, you may find that these “new” watches are provided with a warranty; however it is a warranty through the grey market dealer itself and not the manufacturer. If your watch were to require servicing, it may be done with generic parts, and most likely not by a watchmaker authorized to work on your brand. When generic parts are put into high end timepieces, it can greatly affect the performance of the movement (much like improperly altering the motor in a performance car) in addition to being detrimental to the value of the watch.  The money saved on the purchase price of these timepieces will almost always be lost in higher servicing charges down the line.  Also, because these dealers try to hide the original source of gray market watches, they usually are not available with the original paperwork, calling into question their authenticity and also hurting resale value down the line.

When purchasing through an authorized dealer like Govberg Jewelers, you are not only paying for the best watches on the market, but also for trust and peace of mind. These trusted sources will have all the knowledge about the particular watches and brands they represent.  They employ sales professionals who have been extensively trained by the brand(s) and are more than happy to assist in answering any question about the new watches.  By using an authorized dealer, you again have the security of knowing you have the full warranty in case anything happens to your watch.  These stores also have built relationships with the brands they carry and have full access to the entire inventory of the manufacturer.

About Josh Srolovitz
After getting into watches at a young age, Josh acquired his first luxury watch while still in high school, the Omega 300m GMT 50th Anniversary. He has since continued on with his passion for watches and has owned a Rolex 16233 Datejust, 16013 Datejust, 17000 Oyster Quartz, 1803 Day Date, Rose Gold Chronographe Suisse, and a Corum Trophy 41. He started at Govberg Jewelers in 2012 and it has only fueled his passion for collecting timepieces. Find Josh at the Philadelphia location of Govberg Jewelers.