Why Sell Art to ArtLife?
Selling art is not for the faint of heart, especially for those unfamiliar with the art world. It is advisable to seek out a professional whose expertise and knowledge of the art market is reliable. Below are some guidelines to help you navigate the complexities involved in selling art.
1.) Determining Fair Market Value
Determining fair market value is of utter importance to anyone that wants to sell art. The value of art can fluctuate regularly, sometimes on a weekly basis. This is due to the continual buying and selling, which affects both supply and demand. Sellers will often approach galleries with the intention of selling for retail prices. Fair market value, however, is not synonymous with the retail prices charged by galleries. Galleries are leveraging their extensive lists of contacts, while also enlisting expert marketing strategies designed to attract collectors. Galleries sell art for retail prices. Fair market value, on the other hand, is typically determined by auction houses. The sale price of a work at auction is often considered the industry standard when it comes to fair market value. A good point of reference is Artnet.com, where you can run reports to determine the market value for your works.
2.) Auction Houses
At first glance, one might think it wise to go directly to a Sotheby’s or a Christie’s. They determine market value and have the largest clientele. This type of venue, however, comes with significant added costs. Having a better understanding of the underlying workings of an auction house will help you make a more informed decision. It will also ensure you receive the best value for your works.
Sales prices at auctions are determined by the hammer price with an additional 25% premium to the buyer. For example, if a work sells for $100,000 hammer price, the seller receives $75,000. The auction house keeps the other 25%. There is typically an additional commission fee of 10%. There are also fees for catalogs, storage, photos, promotion, insurance and shipping. At the end of the auction, a seller can expect to pocket between 60-65% of the total sales price.
When you sell art to an auction house, you must also consider the time involved in realizing the auction. The auction house typically issues payment within two to four weeks after the sale. However, it often takes months for the actual auction to take place. Auction houses need sufficient time to market, print catalogs, photograph artworks and have works authenticated.
3.) Selling Through ArtLife
Selling your art through ArtLife is the most expedient way of receiving payment for your works. At ArtLife, we pay current market value and will issue payment immediately after the work is inspected by our team. This seamless approach makes selling your art hassle-free.
To see some of the artists and works we currently represent, visit our artists page.