“Antique dealer” is a broad term. It can refer to someone who sells one or two items on the side, or it can describe an entire lifestyle dedicated to hunting down beautiful collectibles and showing them off in their best light. Antique dealers come from all walks of life and typically have at least one thing in common: they love the stories behind the items. If you’re thinking about becoming an antique dealer yourself but aren’t sure if it’s right for you, this guide will highlight some of the characteristics it takes to become a successful antique dealer.
Curiosity is the key to success in this business. You have to be curious about what you’re going to buy, who you’re buying it from, and why it exists in the first place. If you aren’t curious about something new, how can you expect your customers to be?
The best way to discover things is always through conversation with other people. Great dealers gather all of the information possible to best describe each item and its significance. Who made this thing? How long ago did they live or die? Does anyone still make things like this today? The more detail, the better.
Taste is the ability to recognize quality, beauty, and the difference between good and bad. Developing your sense of discernment is crucial to becoming a successful antique dealer.
Compare prices and determine what qualities make each object more valuable than others like it. This is a necessary skill that you can perfect through practice to help you invest in quality antiques.
Plenty of Patience
Patience is one of the most important traits that a successful antique dealer must have. Finding the right pieces can take time, and so can adding value to them through restoration. It also takes patience for you to wait for the right buyer or price for your items.
Great Communication Skills
Communication is a vital skill in any business. You’ll need to be able to communicate with your customers, team, suppliers, and others. Many antique dealers who have successfully built their businesses attribute their success to the quality of their communication skills.
Lots of Energy
A successful antique dealer has a lot of energy. A good antique dealer needs stamina, agility, and the ability to multitask. Antique dealers need the energy to travel to auctions and estate sales, research pieces they might want to sell in their stores, restore them if necessary, and market their business over social media platforms or at local events. They also need the energy to deal with customers.
A Passionate Career
The world is full of antique dealers, but not all are successful. It takes a lot of work and dedication to run a successful business, but it’s worth it in the end. As long as you have the right tools, skills, and knowledge at your disposal, anything is possible.