Do Omega watches hold their value?
When talking about watches, it’s difficult to avoid the topic of price and value. Because as a matter of fact, Omega watches are not cheap objects, at least not relatively speaking.
It’s no secret that the vast majority of new products that you buy loses value when you buy it. Just like a brand new car loses X percent when you buy it from the dealership, most watches also lose in value when you buy them from an official Omega retailer. There are of course exceptions from this rule which is predicated on supply and demand. This sometimes applies to hard-to-get limited edition or special release models.
But the fact is that not all watch brands hold their value equally well, and as the title suggests, in this article, we’ll be specifically looking at Omega watches.
Do Omega watches hold their value?
First thing first, it’s important to note that there are a bunch of different factors that affect how well something holds its value on the secondhand-market.
Here are some of the factors that we’ll look closer at further on:
- Type of model: not all models are equally popular (supply and demand)
- Condition: The condition of a pre-owned Omega watch will obviously affect its value
- Accessories: what accessories come with your Omega watch will also affect its value
- Age: How old your Omega watch is will also affect its value
What affects how well an Omega watch holds its value?
Before we go into detail of the points listed above, it’s interesting to discuss what other things affect how well an object holds its value the secondhand-market.
Supply and demand
Supply and demand will always be the most important deciding factor in how well something holds its value on the secondhand market.
Omega, like essentially all other watch brands, has official retailers that sell their watches. Today, the demand for Omega watches is quite high (producing millions per year), but at the same time, the supply of the watches are quite high as well.
This means that there is no lack of Omega watches on the market. Instead, they are easily available in Omega stores. And if they do not have the watch you are looking for, in most cases, they are able to order it for you.
For other brands, for example, Richard Mille, Audemars Piguet, and Rolex, the production is smaller, and there may also be an intentional limit of the production of the most popular models in order to create scarcity and thus increase demand.
The official retailers are the main outlet for watches, including Omega, and when it gets increasingly difficult to get the watch you are looking for from them, because of things like waiting list and limited production, the demand for those watches on the secondhand market will naturally increase. And as a result, the prices will increase. This is the basic principle of supply and demand.
Now, the reason most Omega watches lose value on the secondhand market is that they are brought from the official outlet (an official retailer) to the secondhand-market. The second-hand market does not play by the same rules as the official retailers, and the printing there is instead completely based on supply and demand. This brings us to the next point.
Recommended retail prices
All Omega retailers are the main outlet for Omega watches, and when it comes to pricing, they must follow Omega’s guidelines of the recommended retail prices. There are many reasons why Omega makes recommended retail price, but the most important is that they want to ensure that all Omega watches cost essentially the same across the world, and also to minimize competition among the official retailers. Of course, this will also help ensure that the watches are not sold at heavily discounted prices (even if they are, but generally not publicly).
Now, this brings us to the next point which is discounts. Discounts are an interesting topic in the world of watches as Omega watches, in particular, are classified as luxury objects
But the factor the matter is that on many other expensive products, it is common to ask for a discount, for example when buying a car.
The ”problem” with discounts is that it dilutes the brand, and teaches the customer that the watch is not worth what the retail price is. Instead, you eventually take for granted to get a discount. What this will ultimately lead to is pushing down prices of the watches on the secondhand market. The cheaper it is possible to get something from the official retailer, the cheaper they are going to be on the secondhand market.
Take Rolex for example. On the most popular models, it is very uncommon to get a discount due to the fact that the demand for them is huge. And factoring in this with the fact that the ”waiting list” for these models can be months or even years without the right contacts, naturally, the demand for these watches will increase on the secondhand market.
The point of this is that it is absolutely possible to get a discount when buying an Omega watch from an official retailer. In fact, all you need to do is ask.
The brand will always matter
Another factor that will impact the secondhand prices of Omega watches is of course brand. The brand is extremely important in the world of luxury objects.
People are willing and prepared to pay more for something that has a strong and recognized brand. Take for example luxury brands like Hermes and Gucci.
The same goes for watch brands and Omega in particular.
Omega is an old and well-known watch brand that is both respected and appreciated. Some of the world’s leaders and famous individuals have worn Omega watches.
This is actually something that helps improve the secondhand value of Omega watches.
Now, the catch is that there is not only one thing that affects how well an Omega watch holds its value. For example, Omega may have a limited supply of their watches, but if there’s limited demand, the secondhand prices will remain consistently lower than from official retailers.
Go for the most popular models
Not all models are created equal. Omega has a large number of models and variants in its production, and as with everything, they have popular and they have less popular models.
Omega’s most popular models are the Speedmaster and Seamaster. This results in the fact that these two models also hold their value best on the secondhand market as the demand for them is quite high.
Now, the catch is that within those ranges, there are an array of different variants. There are gold versions, dial variants, functions variants, and so on.
Generally speaking, the classic ”standard” models tend to be the ones that hold their value best on the secondhand market, and this is also true for Omega watches.
The watches that depreciate the least (when talking about modern Omega watches currently in production) are the standard Omega Speedmaster Moonwatch Professional and the Seamaster Diver 300M. Then, there are other models that are also quite popular such as the Aqua-Terra and Seamaster 300.
Buy from the secondhand market
If you are a conscious buyer who is looking to strike a good deal on your Omega watch, it is almost always best to opt for buying pre-owned.
Just like a car when rolling out from the dealership, an Omega watch tends to depreciate the most when it is taken from the authorized Omega retailer and to the secondhand market. It does not matter if the watch is brand new and never worn.
Now, for the sake of being able to generalize, let’s talk some numbers about how much a brand new Omega watch depreciates in value.
Generally speaking, the most popular Omega watches such as the Speedmaster Moonwatch Professional and Seamaster steel tend to lose between 20-30% from the retail price.
Now, if you scored a discount of say 15-20% and bought the watch from an authorized retailer, that’s not a very bad deal. Of course, when you start wearing it, the other factors discussed kicks in such as condition, age, and accessories.
Less popular models such as DeVille and Constellation can depreciate as much as 30-40% on the secondhand market. This is all based on supply and demand. The demand for these models are significantly lower, and thus the prices on the secondhand market remain low. We offer tax-free sales of Omega watches to buyers outside the EU, and for these watches, you will get between 20-35% discount from the retail price.
Now, with that said, the most popular Omega watches actually hold their value considerably well compared to many other watch brands such as Tissot, TAG Heuer, Montblanc, and so on.
No, if you buy an Omega watch for full retail price, in most cases, the watch will depreciate in value quite a bit. However, if you get a deal and buy it x percent off from retail, you will be able to save a ton of money which would otherwise have gone lost in depreciation.
Vintage Omega watches
Please recognize that this article focuses specifically on newer watches. The fact of the matter is that an Omega watch can actually prove to be a great investment in the long term as it becomes vintage, but whether or not it will become collectible are pure speculations.
But looking at the history, there are many Omega watches, in particular, the Speedster which has increased dramatically in value over time and proven to be great investments. But since this is long-term and only speculation, it’s difficult to say how much your Omega watch will depreciate in the long-term, because it might just prove to increase in value.
As you can see, there are an array of different factors that affect if an Omega watch.
The general rule for Omega watches is that they depreciate in value when bought for full retail price. There are some exceptions to this with certain limited editions, however.
Generally speaking, an Omega watch loses between 20-40% in value in the first year. How much depends on the demand for these models, how popular they are, and whether it is new or worn.
At the end of the day, if an Omega watch holds its value depends on what you paid for it. When paying full retail price, Omega watches do not tend to hold the same value as you paid, but if you are able to strike a good deal either from an authorized retailer or on the secondhand market, you may in some cases be able to enjoy an Omega watch and then be able to sell it for the same price that you bought it for.
For buyers outside the EU, we offer unworn Omega watches at tax-free and thus highly competitive prices. Browse our current collection of tax-free Omega watches here.