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The Buyer’s Guide to Getting a Used Rolex


Are you thinking about buying a second-hand Rolex? Occasionally, buying a pre-owned Rolex can look like a disaster waiting to happen. You might spend quite some time figuring out where to start, or which model to consider. When purchasing an item that costs you an arm and a leg like Rolex, it’s essential to gather enough knowledge before investing. Otherwise, if you fail to educate yourself on what you intend to buy, you might end up buying fake items. To avoid finding yourself with a knock-off Rolex, here is a buyer’s guide containing everything you need to know before you get that second-hand watch.

What you should consider before buying a used Rolex

1. Seller

The seller is the first and most significant part when buying a pre-owned Rolex watch. So far, a Rolex watch is the most faked brand in the world. The quality of these watches has gone to the extent that they are indistinguishable from the original brand. If you’re hunting for a used Rolex, how will you tell if what you are getting is authentic? Unfortunately, there isn’t a straightforward way. Brand experts have no certainty of product genuineness by looking at website images. Also, the industry is brimming with less reliable dealers. Your task is to search for honest retailers who can stand by their product and prove its authenticity. An excellent place to begin is websites that specialize in purchasing, vending, and educating customers about watches. You may find yourself buying from a dealer you haven’t encountered before. In such a case, start by reading their customer’s reviews online.

According to The Global Watch Shop, all online reviews are generated differently, and you must comprehend the validity of each report. Searching on Google will help to determine the reliability of the evaluation. You can as well look at the company registrations to familiarize yourself with the seller. Find out how many years they have been operating, and whether they provide things like warranties, certificates of validity, and whether they own a cash-back guarantee. Apart from that, the best company will have a trained Rolex master watchmaker to verify each watch.

When you purchase from a frank and reputable dealer, they will divulge all essential details for transparency. Reliable dealers have a great deal of experience and proficiency with watches; therefore, they can provide all relevant information regarding the used Rolex you wish to purchase. An important thing to note is that you don’t need to rush into buying this used Rolex. As mentioned above, with the second-hand Rolex industry increasingly becoming profitable commerce, it’s teeming with the corrupt. However, the internet is good at sniffing out the unscrupulous dealers. You can be confident that if a customer has had a bad experience with an individual seller, that information will be displayed online.

2. Understand the terms and conditions

Once you’ve confirmed that the company you intend to buy from is reliable and reputable, it’s crucial that you apprehend their selling conditions. According to Bob’s Watches, you should read and understand the fine print that you always disregard.

3. Model

When buying a brand for the first time, you’ll most likely research the different models available. In your exploration, you will see just how broad your choices are. According to The Cuttings, among the best things about Rolex are the numerous varieties of different models available. You can choose your favorite model based on your personal preference. Some of the Rolex models to consider are the Sea-Dweller, Yacht-Master, Dive watches, and Submariner. Dive watches are extremely tough and have rotating bezels that you can use to track time in nearly all situations. The same goes for a chronograph; hence the watch you pick also depends on your needs.

4. Movement

Movement or caliber is indisputably the most sensitive element of a watch. It comprises a significant amount of parts. Naturally, mechanical items wear and tear after a certain period. Hence, they require some servicing. According to The Millenary Watches, before you purchase a used Rolex, it is essential that you know the state of the movement beforehand.

With a Rolex that has been used for a few years, the movement won’t have had enough time to wear out. Besides, if the motion fails to function correctly, a few-years-old Rolex watch is still under the five-year warranty. You can use a time graph to know the movement’s condition quickly. The time graph will measure the beat of the used Rolex, and thus it’s precision. If the Rolex caliber loses or gains several seconds every day, then this means that the watch needs servicing. About functionality, you may also want to ensure that all parts are operating correctly. You should note that it’s perfectly fine to purchase a watch whose parts are not functioning correctly, as long as you’re aware of it.

5. Accessories

Some people will buy a Rolex watch that is fully set while others will prioritize finding the ideal watch. An older watch will most likely not have all accessories; hence some individuals may assess the accessories to ascertain the watch has been maintained well. The most significant thing, however, is the warranty. Warranty is unique to that specific watch, and you can’t replace it. But you can always restore all other accessories. Also, check the serial number of the warranty. If the card is included, ensure that the serial and reference numbers match with your Rolex.

6. Crystal

The crystal is another element that you must carefully assess. Find out if the glass is in perfect condition and whether it has some scratches or chips. You can check for chips by running your fingernail on the edge of the crystal. The good news is that it is not quite costly to replace a diamond. Moreover, you may want to find out if it is original and genuine. The latest watches come with a 6 o’clock laser engraved crown. A service crystal will most likely have an “S” etched inside the crown to signify replacement.

7. Bracelet

Examine the state of the bracelet. Note, it’s normal for a jubilee bracelet to feel light. A Rolex watch bracelet is known to stretch after some time. However, a stainless steel bracelet does not stretch out. Ensure you’ve checked your bracelet’s condition by looking at the extent of stretch in the bracelet.

8. Budget

Once you know what you are looking for in a used Rolex watch, you can now estimate your budget. When you begin hunting for a high-quality luxury watch, there will always be a more costly option. The model you pick might also be available in an extra precious metal or may have some form of gemstone decoration. According to The Becker Time, there will also be a model rarer hence highly appreciated and in demand. Nonetheless, always remember not to get carried away by your emotions and overstretch your budget for your dream watch.

Benefits of Buying a Used Rolex

1. A second-hand Rolex is cheaper than a brand new one

The first advantage of purchasing a pre-owned Rolex is the low price you’ll pay for the watch. Brand new Rolex watches can be quite expensive. It can also seem like a daunting investment more so if you are a first-time buyer. However, when you choose a used Rolex, you’ll be reducing the expense significantly. When you compare Rolex watches with some other brands, you will find that Rolex retains considerable merit. The value of a pre-owned Rolex is considerably lower compared to that of a new Rolex. This affordability allows customers to buy a used Rolex at a more reasonable price. It will also enable you to purchase a more extravagant model instead of an entry-level watch.

2. Pre-owned watches decrease in value much slower.

The most significant moment of depreciation for watches is when they shift from being new to second-hand. Hence, when you purchase a brand new Rolex watch, it decreases in value right away. Meaning, even before the watch sustains a single scratch, its value instantly goes down. On the other hand, a pre-owned Rolex watch depreciates much slower. If you decide to sell your Rolex, you will most likely have a successful result. Odds are, after using a pre-owned Rolex for a year, it will be worth approximately the same as your buying price. By contrast, after one year of using a brand new Rolex, you can only sell it at a considerably lower price.

3. Used watches might even increase in value.

In certain instances, the second-hand Rolex that you buy may appreciate as days and months go on. Several reasons may cause this to happen. First, the watch model might be discontinued. This discontinuation will instantly make it rare. Another reason is that emerging technologies may put an older watch into a collector’s item. Numerous individuals also regard second-hand Rolex as a good investment. If the watch is a bit damaged, the expense of repairing it might be reasonably small. Equally, you can make specific modifications to the model to push its value upwards.

4. Your second-hand watch will be renewed.

It’s reasonable to contemplate on a used Rolex and wonder about the perceptible state of the product. You might be concerned that the item will appear worn, have scratches, or be discolored. However, Rolex watches are strong enough to survive daily usage without apparent signs of depreciation. Furthermore, according to The Jaztime Blog, all pre-owned Rolex watches sold via Jaztime are rigorously serviced before availing them in the market. This service ensures that the Rolex you purchase is in perfect condition and looks like brand new.

5. Great selection of models

While purchasing a new Rolex has its advantages, the fact remains, you are limited to buying the current models. If a stock is given a refashion, the Rolex, you had earlier set your heart on may cease to be part of this collection. At the same time, restricted edition watches are only available as new for a brief period. Contrastingly, if you assess the pre-owned market, you’ll get a much broader selection of watches. When you browse the online store, you can find discontinued Rolex models. You may also find previous editions of current models, but with different features.

6. A Rolex watch is made to last.

You might think that a used Rolex will have a limited shelf-life. However, that’s not the case. Most of the considerable number of mass-produced watches can only serve you for a year or two. In contrast, Rolex watches are engineered from high-quality materials and are made to keep functioning over many years. The vast majority of second-hand Rolex watches return to full working condition after little servicing. This watch can serve you well for the next couple of years. Furthermore, you can buy a used Rolex watch with a one year guarantee. Therefore, you’ll be protected if you experience problems with your watch.

7. You may get your ideal model.

Numerous people grow up with the desire to possess a specific product like a Rolex watch. They work with great effort so that they can manage to purchase it. However, in most instances, by the time they have the finances to buy the watch, it becomes unavailable. The model may even be discontinued entirely or overhauled. Luckily by searching for the second-hand Rolex, you might manage to get that elusive Rolex and realize your aspiration.

Where to purchase a second-hand Rolex

Finally, when it comes to buying a used Rolex, most customers’ serious concern is that they end up buying a fake model. According to The Cool Material, a reputable and reliable jewelry store is generally the right place to get a quality and genuine pre-owned Rolex. These days, the market is filled with numerous and fake second-hand Rolex models. Before making a purchase decision, take your time to research and understand everything about the used Rolex you intend to buy.

Liz Flynn

Written by Liz Flynn

Liz Flynn has worked as a full-time writer since 2010 after leaving a career in education. She finds almost all topics she writes about interesting, but her favorite subjects are travel and food. Liz loves the process of researching information, learning new things, and putting into words what others who share her interests might like to read. Although she spends most of her time writing, she also enjoys spending time with her husband and four children, watching films, cooking, dining out, reading, motorsports, gaming, and walking along the beach next to her house with her dog.

Read more posts by Liz Flynn

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