How to Sell a Rolex Watch

When it comes to re-selling watches, there's a reason why Rolex tops the market in resale value. Rolex uses only the highest caliber of precious metals to craft their superior watches, and there are few watches in the world that blend fashion and functionality like Rolex.

Pre owned Rolex watches are known for retaining their resale value. A well-maintained Rolex watch is almost as valuable resale as it is from an authorized dealer. Due to their craftsmanship and incredible demand for them, the Rolex brand is viewed as both a functional watch and a collector's item all in one. So, wondering how to sell a Rolex watch? Follow along for CJ Charles’ complete guide. 

Where Is The Reference Number And Why Do I Need It?

One of the most important components, and the first step, of selling a Rolex is finding the reference number. On a Rolex, the reference number is often confused with the serial number. These two numbers tell the potential buyer or Rolex collector two completely different things about the watch in question.

For one, the reference number is in a completely different location than the serial number. The reference number, also called the model or case number is located on the outside of the case between the lugs above the 12 O'clock position. 

Whereas the serial number tells a potential buyer when the pre owned watch was produced, the reference number tells you what Rolex model the watch is, the materials used, the calibre type, and even the kind of bezel the watch has. A Rolex reference number can be anywhere between four and six digits, depending on when the watch was produced. 

How To Locate The Serial Number And Why It's Important

The serial number helps to establish your Rolex's authenticity. The serial and model number are unique to every Rolex timepiece. Typically, the visual detail of the serial and model number will tell you if a pre owned Rolex is genuine without even cross-referencing it with the Rolex back catalog.

A potential buyer will be looking for a specific typeface that Rolex is famous for using on their serial and case numbers. This typeface has a very sharp and specific letter print which makes it hard to produce a passable counterfeit. Also, with older Rolex models, the serial number can help determine the year that the watch was produced.

To locate the serial number on your vintage Rolex watch, look in between the lugs at the 6 o'clock position. All Rolex watches produced after 2007 have this number engraved on the inside of the case, whereas Rolex watches produced before 2007 feature this number on the outside of the case.

When identifying the serial number, you should see a single letter followed by 6 digits. If your Rolex was produced before the year 1987, then the serial number will be on the outside of the watch in the 6' O'clock position but will feature a different letter/digit pattern. 

Your original paperwork for the watch should also have the serial number, and obviously, those two numbers should be the same. 

Why The Original Box and Papers Matter For Selling Your Rolex

Much like the serial number, the original box and papers help to establish your Rolex's authenticity. What the box and papers offer that a serial number cannot is a failsafe that proves the luxury watch came from the Rolex factory.

It is much more difficult for someone who is trying to sell a counterfeit Rolex to forge a box and the paperwork than it is to come up with a fake serial number. Additionally, coming up with a fake serial number, a fake box, and fake papers is almost impossible. 

The presence of the box and papers that match the serial number of your Rolex proves beyond a doubt that the watch is authentic, giving peace of mind to the watch buyer while also helping to establish premium value for you as a seller. 

We should note, if for some reason you are unable to find the original box and papers, it does not mean you cannot sell your Rolex; it simply means it will be a little more difficult. Rolex will never issue a new box or papers, which is why Rolex’s that have the box and papers fetch considerably higher prices.

If you’d like a more in-depth discussion on prices, check our guide on jewelry appraisal vs selling price, for more information on estimated selling prices and appraisal.  

Research Market Value: Why The Internet May Lead You Astray

So, how much is my watch worth? Engaging in market research is a must before you sell your Rolex, but there's a right and a wrong way to do it. While it may be tempting to do a quick google search regarding the value of your watch, you will likely get too broad an answer regarding the true value of the watch. A simple internet search, while it is no doubt the easiest way to get an answer regarding your watch's value, is fraught with misinformation that could lead you to make a poor financial decision.

Alternately, the experts at CJ Charles are experts for a reason. Many of our watch aficionados have years of experience buying and selling Rolex watches. This wealth of knowledge regarding the general value of your Rolex, the market value of your Rolex, and the potential value of your Rolex all come into play when you want to know how much your high end watch is potentially worth. 

Market research is an invaluable asset when you are getting ready to sell your Rolex, and no one has a better system for assessing the market than the vintage experts at CJ Charles. 

CJ Charles Is the Best Reputable Buyer

Finding a reputable buyer is just as important as being an honest and reputable seller. Selling a Rolex watch the right way means selling it to someone who is not trying to scam you or rip you off. 

You want to make sure that you are receiving what your watch is really worth, especially if your Rolex is potentially rare and valuable. CJ Charles is a reputable fine jewelry buyer that is interested in your watch. 

For more information about how to sell your Rolex, contact CJ Charles directly and set up an appointment. We look forward to helping you sell your fine watch, and we are confident that should you rely on the expertise of our staff, that you will be thrilled with the outcome of your future sale.  

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