Would you like to start collecting silver plated items? Or do you have a collection of them and concerned about their value? Are you one of those folks who go to antique stores, hoping that their silver-plated platters and tea sets will strike gold? Well, this article is for you, and you’ll undoubtedly find it pretty helpful.
Since we’ve realized that most people don’t know how and where to sell silver plated items, we’ll enlighten you on that. We will also share a few silver-plate collecting tips, along with other crucial information that you might need to know. Are you already excited? Let’s get started.
What’s the difference between silver plate and silver?
If you’re uncertain whether the items you have are silver or silver plate, it is essential to know the difference before approaching the current metal market. Silver is a valuable metal that has a long-lasting intrinsic value. Therefore, you can melt it down and sell it depending on the metal market.
On the contrary, silver-plated items are only worth what the buyer has to offer. Unlike silver that has a melting value, silverplate doesn’t. Besides, each item has a small amount of silver. If you have unique items that are in good condition and more decorative, the better; because you’ll get more money.
Also, unlike solid silver that has value in the metal market, silver-plated pieces are more about the antique market. The good news is that the worth of silver has been going up, making the value of silver-plated items go up.
If you’re wondering where silver plating came from, there is a short history behind it that you might find quite interesting and educational.
3 Tips for selling silver-plated Items
You can sell your silver just like any other item. However, if you want to get the best deal, keep the following tips in mind:
1. Understand the value of your silver
Knowing the true value of your silver-plated products will help you accept or decline offers. You can use a scrap silver calculator to determine the value of your silver-plated spoons, flatware and so forth. If you know your item correct value, even buyers cannot rip you off that easily.
2. Always allow potential buyers to make their offer first
You might underestimate the value of your product and turn out to be very expensive. Therefore, go slow because the buyer might surprise you with a bigger offer than you expected.
If you have to go first in making the offer, ask for more than you think the item is worth. By doing this, you’ll be doing a great job bracketing the ideal price range.
3. Learn to walk away
The willingness to walk away is an excellent tactic when selling silver plated items because there are plenty of buyers out there. Without any doubts, you’ll meet a potential buyer who is willing to offer their best. After all, if you feel that the deal isn’t right for you, it is very much okay to decline.
Where can I sell silver-plated items?
How easily you can sell your silver plated collection depends on what you have and its amount. If your biggest concern is where to sell them, there is a market like eBay, a great place to get started with your collectables.
You can also approach craft workers who buy silver-plated wares like forks and spoons to make rings and so forth. Therefore, if you want to get rid of unwanted items in your house, there are people out there willing to buy silver-plated things.
Some magnificent silver-plated objects like teapots and bowls that are in excellent condition can give good money. In fact, you’ll be surprised to find out that they are more valuable than nickel-silver alloy at any scrap yard.
In most cases, storefront buyers of sterling silver and gold will give you something like a dollar or fifty cents for every pound of your silver-plated item. They accumulate what you have until it is enough. So, we believe it saves you the trouble, and the time you could have used going to a scrap yard to sell at a profit.
However, you can take your items to a scrap guard if you have a substantial quantity. Since some scrap yards offer special prices for silver-plated items, you might land a friendlier one.
Before selling your silver-plated items, you need to keep the following factors in mind because they determine their value:
- Desirability: will the younger generation find your item interesting?
- Era or age: is it a 20th-century wedding gift or more than 100 years?
- Style: Is your piece plain and straightforward or ornate and high-end?
- Condition: Is it polished and mint or tarnished and dented?
- Form: Is it a coaster, bowl, teapot, or coffee pot?
- Maker: is the manufacturer known or unknown?
Top 3 places to sell silver-plated Items
A perfect place to sell your silver-plated products will depend on how fast you want it and the type of items you’re selling. So, take a look at these five verified options to pick one that works for you:
eBay allows you to sell any silver you have. Also, since it is an online auction site, items are sold to the highest bidder, hence the potential for more money. We think eBay is a great marketplace for silver that will get you great deals. Besides, the demand for different types of silver, including silverware, sterling silver, jewelry, and so much more, is higher.
Platforms like Facebook host selling and buying groups to post your silver for sale, so don’t be afraid to start today. Some of these websites are specific to precious metals, like the silver and gold group on Facebook. Others only allow you to sell unwanted products in local communities.
Pawnshops are a great option if you’re looking for quick money for your silver-plated items. Nevertheless, you need to be aware that you’ll have to pay a certain amount for that speedy process. Also, you’re likely to get a lower price than it would on the internet.
Tips for collecting silver-plate
Would you like to earn money selling silverplate items as your side hustle? Here are some collecting tips that we believe will help you become successful in that journey:
1. Identify rare patterns
Several factors can determine the desirability of a silver-plated item by the buyer. For instance, if you’re selling a piece with various motifs, it will be more desirable than the one without detailing. More expensive antiques tend to have:
- Excellent etchings
- Decorative patterns with repoussé or reliefs
- Funky shapes with styles like Art Nouveau or Art Deco
2. Look for hallmarks
The manufacturer is another factor that will impact the value of your silver plated items. If you’re interested in knowing the worth of your silver plate piece, consider checking whether there are lookup antiques and hallmarks from the company.
We would advise you to familiarize yourself with the most popular hallmarks and manufacturers because they sell more money. Besides, it is an excellent idea for those looking to get a bargain.
3. Consider collecting less common items
The most common silver plate is flatware, and it is the least valuable. Also, since it requires high maintenance, most people prefer stainless steel in this day and age. Therefore, silver-plated flatware is less valuable unless it is very old or rare. So, which silver-plated items will get you money? Here are some with higher value:
- Pieces detailing gold or rose gold
- Old and decorative items
- Serving dishes and unique shaped platters
How can I clean silver-plated items without using chemicals?
If you want to generate a reasonable amount of money in the antique market, restoring your items’ silver and cleaning it to your liking is the way to go. But how can you do that? It is pretty simple with clear instructions. All you’ll need to have is a bucket, a pot to boil water, salt, a soft rag, aluminum foil and baking soda.
Once you have everything, you can now follow these steps:
- Line your bucket with aluminum foil
- Sprinkle a small amount of baking soda and salt on the foil
- Bring water to boil and pour it into your container
- Allow your silver-plated item to soak
- Lastly, remove the item from the bucket, rinse, and dry it.
Like we have discussed, there is a market to sell your silver-plated items. However, their rarity and beauty will highly determine the value. If you want to make enormous amounts of money out of your sales, it is crucial to understand different types of silverplate.
Also, since all silver eventually tarnishes and gets dull, it is recommendable to clean it without chemicals before showing it to your buyer. You’ll not only save money by doing this but also save much of your time.
Did you find this post helpful? Please let us know. You can also share with us your experience selling silver-plated items.