Hess Fine Art

Fine Art, Auction, Watch and Antique Experts Since 1984.
1131 4th Street North
St. Petersburg, FL 33701 (map)
(727) 896-0622 | 1-800-922-4377
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What's It Worth? Underperforming Assets

What's It Worth? Underperforming Assets

We all have what Katrina calls “underperforming assets.” Some we hang on to for sentimental reasons, and as we have always noted, not a single person in the world can put a price on sentimentality.

Our story today is about a Lakeland resident who had a peculiar request. The woman was 77 and her younger husband was recently retired from his business at 72. She mentioned that his “first wife” was his business and she was simply his “mistress” (yes, she had a terrific sense of humor), and now that they both had time on their hands, they wanted to go on a cruise down the Danube, a long dreamed-of trip that they had just not gotten around to.

She said she had a house full of antiques and “old stuff” and some of her mother’s stuff as well, and warned that all she wanted to sell was enough for their airfare and the cruise, about $10,000 worth.

We sent our most senior fine and decorative arts expert to her home; he was surprised to find a house that was devoid of anything valuable. 1960s-era inexpensive decorative items worth a few bucks to $50, but nothing noteworthy.

Our house-call expert recalls that she suddenly asked him if we bought statues. Expecting more junk, he followed her to the garage to find a dusty old 2-foot tall bronze sculpture by an obscure (but well known to collectors) Native American artist named Allan Houser ... with the title “Old Memories.”

We entered into an agreement to sell it for the couple and gave them a $10,000 advance (that was the Danube money). We eventually sold it for much more — and a month after they returned from their trip, we presented them with another check for an additional $9,000 after we deducted our commission.

Do you have “underperforming assets” in unworn gold or watches? Grandpa’s collection of widgets or paintings? Grandmother’s silver? When it comes time to de-clutter, downsize, or invest in the stock market — or to take a cruise down the Danube — give us a call. If you have any pieces by Allan Houser, or other valuable collectibles to sell, please give us a call.
You have seen us in Forbes Magazine, The Wall Street Journal and The New York Times. All rights reserved.
We will meet you at your home, bank, or attorney’s office. No estate too small or too large.

Stop in or call 727.896.0622 for an appointment. 

Comments, questions or suggestions for this column, please send to jeffreyphess@aol.com. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

St. Petersburg 1131 4th St. N, St. Petersburg FL 33701.

Ph: 727.896.0622

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Hess Fine Art - Fine Art, Auction, Watch and Antique Experts Since 1984

Whats It Worth - Underperforming Assets.PDF

Whats It Worth -  Underperforming Assets.PDF

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Publish Date: 
January, 2019