As we hit uncertain financial times, should you invest in a Rolex watch?

Posted by Suzie Kidger-Clarke

on 8th November 2022

With the cost of living crisis causing chaos in many areas of our lives, from buying the weekly food shop to filling our cars with fuel – everything is on the rise.

Although the seeds of the financial crisis were sown some time ago, compounding with the lingering effects of the Covid19 pandemic, inflation and cracking supply chains have caused mayhem across the UK and beyond.

But what does that mean for the luxury watch market?

Well, despite the cost of living crisis causing us to limit our energy bills, many are still looking for ways to invest their money wisely for the future. This means that Rolex watches as a form of investment are very much on the rise.

investing in rolex watch

Should you invest in a Rolex watch?

As we talked about previously in our blog ‘which is the best Rolex to invest in?‘, Rolex watches are renowned for holding, and often appreciating in value.

While not every model will necessarily increase in value, many will hold their value well. Over the past few years, luxury watch prices have been rising consistently and considerably, and despite the uncertainty of the Covid19 pandemic – where outgoings were at their lowest – prices were actually driven up during this time.

The long term investment potential of Rolex watches

The Rolex brand has been flying high in recent years due to the ever-increasing demand for their watches, but unfortunately, this is often outstripping supply. With only 800,000 pieces crafted each year matched with millions of fans around the globe wishing they could get their hands on one – it’s no surprise that prices are rising and there is a healthy market for pre-owned Rolex watches as well.

It’s no surprise that many look to invest in a Rolex, especially with such impressive potential for a return on their investment. In December 2022, Rolex rolled out its own pre owned watches program, making it possible to purchase pre owned Rolex watches that have been certified and guaranteed by Rolex themselves.

According to a report from McKinsey, the pre owned luxury watch market is expected to top around $29billion by 2025. Predictions show that inflation will continue to drive up demand and therefore prices. The stability of many Rolex watches make them a great investment decision, despite the uncertainty in current financial times.

In March of last year, the price of a second hand Rolex Daytona watch peaked at $48,500, however, it can now be found on the secondary market for around $30,000. In early 2022, the prices of Rolex watches in the pre owned market skyrocketed, only dipping slightly at the end of the year.

Rolex watches and the increase of watch prices

Each year, watch prices increase in value – this is an accepted norm and a part of the economic realities of inflation. While a beautiful Rolex watch may not be considered a part of cost of living – it is certainly a great investment for those looking to keep their money safe and potentially earn back more than they paid in later on down the line.

Many of us spend hours aspiring to own luxury watches! Although many that invest in Rolex watches opt to keep them in a collection to protect their condition.

Uncertain financial times in 2023

As we’ve entered, we’re all a little uncertain about how our financials will be as we continue through 2023. Despite the rise in the cost of living, many are seeking financial investments in the present day to help themselves in years to come.

For some time, vintage Rolex watches and many Rolex sports watches have held their prices impressively and are sought after by collectors.

Vintage Rolex watches: Should you invest in a Rolex?

Rolex investments can be an excellent decision, if you know which Rolex watches to invest in. The most common questions around Rolex are:

  • Are modern Rolex watches the best investment?
  • Which Rolex watch holds its value the best?
  • Why do Rolex watches hold value?
  • Are vintage Rolex watches the best Rolex to invest in?

Although it can be difficult to say exactly which Rolex you should invest in, here are a few options to choose from:

best rolex watch to invest in

Rolex Milgauss

The Milgauss is a one-of-a kind Rolex, originally designed to protect its wearer from the damaging effects of electromagnetic environments. Defying time itself since its mid 1950s launch, this revolutionary model features tinted crystal and an iconic orange lightning bolt sweeping secondhand over the face – but that’s not all. Built with a soft iron Faraday cage for extra protection against radiation, it’s no wonder why healthcare professionals and scientists continue to wear this timeless piece.

The Rolex Daytona

With a passion for sponsoring sporting events, Rolex teamed up with the iconic Daytona Road Beach Course and looked to craft the watch perfect for drivers, releasing the Rolex Daytona in 1963. Launched that same year as part of their sponsorship deal, the classic Rolex Daytona was designed with racing firmly in mind; perfectly combining style and function.

The GMT Master and GMT Master ii

Explorers and adventurers have long looked to Rolex for their timekeeping adventure companions. The Submariner helps divers reach new depths, while Daytona watches are paired perfectly with racing drivers. Sailors head out with Yacht-Master in tow, but pilots had a special request: enter the GMT Master watch – designed by Rolex alongside Pan Am Airways, the GMT Master has continue to remain popular with pilots and navigators.

But what about when it comes to deciding to invest in a Rolex? Well, the GMT Master and GMT Master ii continue to remaining one of the best Rolex watches to invest in, not only because they are hardwearing, but this timepiece continues to hold its value.

Vintage GMT Master watches can be an incredible investment, with some rarer models sold for tens of, even hundreds of thousands of pounds. If you’re on the hunt for a true treasure, custom-engraved or otherwise one-of-a kind editions may carry quite a hefty price tag – but these pieces have the potential to become even more valuable over time, making for great Rolex investments.

The Rolex Sea Dweller

First introduced in 1967, the Rolex Sea Dweller has remained a top favourite ever since. Originally designed for divers, this model has seen some changes since its release. The Ref: 16660 model was launched in 1978, allowing divers to wear this stunning timepiece at a depth of 4000 feet (1220m).

Since fewer of these models were sold in comparison, its rarity has increased its secondary market value – making it a key choice for those looking for investment pieces.

Rolex Submariner

An absolute icon in the world of Rolex watches, the Submariner offers a combination of iconic design, bulletproof movement and excellent craftsmanship. The different generations and versions of the Submariner have seen a huge increase in price in the last few months, making for a great Rolex investment.

The Rolex Submariner ref. 14060 was in production between 1990 – 2010, during which time Rolex made a string of small updates to it. The first update came in the form of changing from tritium lume to LumiNova, before switching to the Super-LumiNova in the late 90s. The second update came in the form of the movement, when Rolex replaced the caliber 3000 with the more modern caliber 3130.

For the Rolex Submariner, those in great condition with the official box and papers are heavily sought after, and a much-respected Rolex investment piece.

How to protect your Rolex investments

Like any great collectible, it’s important to keep your Rolex watches in excellent condition. Of course, your everyday Rolex watch wearers will take great care of their timepiece, but for those looking to invest in a Rolex, condition is even more important.

Although Rolex watches are made from premium, hard-wearing materials, the condition of a pre owned Rolex is key to its worth, especially as an investment piece. Visible wear and tear is often to be expected in the secondary market, however, many buyers will also take great care of their Rolex watches for the highest possible return.

How often should you service a Rolex watch?

Whether you’re looking to invest in a Rolex or look after your everyday timepieces, servicing is the best way to keep all luxury watches in tip top condition. Servicing your Rolex is the best way to help maintain the appearance and functionality of a Rolex watch – this will certainly help each watch to hold and appreciate in value over time.

According to Rolex, watches should be serviced at least every 10 years. However, some wearers decide to get their luxury watches serviced more often. This frequency can depend on the model, its age and its usage day to day. For Rolex investments that aren’t worn, it’s entirely up to the owner to decide if servicing is required.

During a routine Rolex service, parts are removed – including the bezel, crown, crystal, crown tube and case back. All of these parts will then be examined and cleaned, with any relevant repairs made.

Choosing which Rolex is a good investment

Many Rolex investors have their own strategy for investing in Rolex watches, whether sports watches, gold Rolex watches or vintage watches. Generally speaking, a good investment is determined by a number of variables, including condition. However, most importantly, exclusivity is critical to a good investment.

The fewer models produced, the rarer a Rolex watch becomes, therefore increasing its value as an investment piece. If you’re new to Rolex watches, it can feel tricky knowing which model is the right investment for you, but we can help.

Invest in Rolex watch: FAQ

Luxury timepieces are a great addition to an investment portfolio, but often, finding the best Rolex to invest in

Are expensive Rolex watches worth it?

Rolex timepieces really are like no other brand. Rolex fans seek out these luxury watches, both to wear everyday and keep in a pristine condition as a form of investment. While a Rolex watch may seem ‘expensive’ (take a look at our blog, ‘Why are Rolex watches so expensive?‘), when you know the breakdown of the materials used and their potential lifespan, they are certainly worth it.

Are all Rolex models worth investing in?

Not necessarily. Typically, the rarer a Rolex is, the higher its value. Often if there are few of a particular Rolex model around, the more people want it – rarer = higher price range.

There are a few things to look out for when looking to invest in a Rolex timepiece, as talked about above.

Uncertain which Rolex watch to invest in?

If you’re not familiar with Rolex watches, no problem! Here at LH Watch Trade, we can help you find the best Rolex to invest in, so you can secure your investment with the right luxury timepiece.

Get in touch with us today, or check out our current Rolex watches to find out more.