What You Need to Know Before Consigning Your Antiques

consigning your antiques

If you've ever brought in items to sell at a consignment shop, you know it can be a hit or miss. Either they sell within minutes, or they sit on the shelves for days without a buyer in sight. This can especially be the case with antique items, as they tend to cater to specific tastes. After all, you never know whether your antique dresser, painting or lamp has a chance at sparking anyone's interest.

Understanding the consignment process can help you increase your chances of a sale so you can give your items a new life. Continue reading to learn more about selling antiques on consignment.


What Is Consignment?


Simply put, consignment is a process in which a person — the consignor — brings an item to an authorized third-party vendor — the consignee — to sell. When the item sells, the consignee gives a percentage of the profit to the consignor. The consignment process gives consignors a chance to advertise their items to a wide audience and earn money for said objects in a safe, no-risk manner.

5 Benefits of Consignment


The main advantage of consignment is that it offers an opportunity to sell gently-used items you no longer want, and buyers have a chance to obtain unique furniture and knickknacks that are perhaps on their wishlists. This is all while the consignee makes a profit. Therefore, it's a win-win for everyone — the consignor, buyer and consignee.

If you still find yourself on the fence about selling antiques on consignment, here are five additional benefits you might be interested to know:


1. It's Simple


When consigning your antiques, the only aspect you'll have to focus on is bringing in your items — the consignees will take care of the tedious sorting and selling process. From that point, you simply have to wait until your item sells. This process is much more stress-free than listing your item to sell online or selling your item at a flea market.


2. It Provides Consistent, Unique Inventory


A major advantage of antique consignment is the consistent inventory. Every time a consigned item sells, another item brought in can fill its place. So long as consignors and consignees are constantly buying and selling, business flows. Additionally, consignment offers a more vast and unique selection of items to purchase, creating a one-of-a-kind buying experience.


3. Payment Is Straight-Forward


With our flat-rate commission and no hidden fees, the consignor can be assured a straightforward payment process.


4. Items Are Quickly Available


Generally speaking, when a consignor brings in a product, the consignee adds it to their inventory for the soonest, most relevant auction. By sending items straight to sale, auctions can make items available for purchase sooner and minimize storage costs. This availability is also a plus for buyers for clear reasons.


5. It's Eco-Friendly


Rather than throwing away unwanted items that will end up in landfills, you can consign your gently-used antiques to reduce waste. As a result, buyers have a greater opportunity to shop with the planet in mind. If an auction house has a wide inventory, buyers will be more likely to bid and browse instead of picking up something new.


How Do I Consign My Antiques?


Once you've determined the items you'd like to consign, you must consider a few additional steps before proceeding.

Try to find all provenance for the item. Check each one thoroughly to ensure they have no major breaks, dents or other signs of wear that could impact their value.

The next step is finding the right consignee to ensure your items will be in reliable hands. Rather than simply taking your antiques to a generic consignment shop, you can take it one step further with Fontaine's Auction Gallery, an experienced antique auction house based in Western Massachusetts.

At Fontaine's, we provide sellers and buyers worldwide with the opportunity to consign and purchase antique items such as:

If you are looking to sell antiques that fit one or more of the above categories, we are more than happy to help. Through our top-notch services and extensive market knowledge, we can make selling and buying antiques an easy experience for you. When consigning your furniture, jewelry, fine arts or other decorative arts with us, you can enjoy our phenomenal rates and extensive audience of buyers located worldwide.

To consign with us, you can request a free estimate – when filling out our form, you will be asked to provide various details regarding your antique, such as its location, artist/maker, dimensions, condition and quality. Alongside photos of your objects, providing extensive details will help us ensure you get the best price for your goods.

From there, we will carefully evaluate the item's condition, durability and rarity to determine its market value. The final step is scheduling an in-person evaluation to bring your item to our gallery and meet with one of our specialists.

If you're looking to purchase any antique items from our live auctions, we offer antique buying options including phone bidding, online bidding and absentee bidding that can be done from anywhere in the world.

set of red antique chairs

Contact Fontaine's Auction Gallery Today


By consigning your antiques with our antique auction house, your items can receive maximum value and achieve high sales potential. Additionally, you can enjoy the following perks:

  • Complimentary auction estimates for potential consignors
  • No transportation fees to pick up items (most of the time)
  • Lower auction fees
  • Early auction postings
  • Standard consignment fee with no hidden charges

For any questions regarding our buying or selling process, please submit a contact form through our website or call (413) 448-8922.