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« Free Money Finance March Money Madness, Round 1, Posts 21-24 | Main | Top 10 Items You Probably Waste Money On »

January 29, 2010


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Fine wine is a really bad investment.

1) No restaurant or auction house will purchase the matured wine from a non-commercial source because they can't be sure you have stored it correctly all during that time. If the wine is stored warm for a while, it can become worthless. Yes, Bordeaux is worth a lot. No, no one will pay anything much for the bottles you kept in your basement for years.

2) If you have it, you tend to drink it. Yummy, but not exactly an investment.

My ex left me with 200+ bottles of fine bordeaux. Not worth anything on the open market, but it's fun to bring a bottle to dinner parties and impress people!

We own signed prints, lithographs, and serigraphs by Emile Bellet, Anatole Krasnyansky, and Thomas Kinkade. We also own an original painting of the inside of a rose by I-don't-remember (my hubby would know) and six of those spray-paint sidewalk art pieces you find in tourist cities...those are probably my favorites. We're eclectic. :-)

All of those might appreciate in value, but we don't care. We bought the specific pieces because we wanted to see them on our walls, not for investments. If they are ever worthless, we'll still love them. If they are ever worth tons o' money, I'll talk my hubby into selling (I'm not that attached, lol), but I truly doubt they'll ever make us rich.

For investments, we trust the usual suspects...stocks, mutual funds, savings accounts, etc.

We board game with someone who has invested tens of thousands of dollars into fine china. That wouldn't be crazy to me except that they are broke otherwise...that seems a bit stupid to me. I rather not depend on highly breakable decorations for my future...

I think wine is more fun to drink than to own. :)

I'm with you Mike.... Buy some wine and...enjoy it. Its an investment in life.

Fine wine has not been a bad investment if you do it properly.

There is next to zero market for a person that buys 100 random bottles and sticks them in their basement closet, but there is a very active auction market for larger, properly maintained collections.

Furthermore, one can purchase wine futures (wine before it is bottled) and those can rise or fall in value.

There are a number of legal reasons a restaurant or shop is unable to purchase wine from an individual. They dont purchase for the legal reason, not the storage issue.

I'm not recommending anyone invest in wine, but to say wine is a 'really bad investment' is simply inaccurate.

I own paintings, art photos, prints, and a few pieces of antique decor (the antiques were either yard sale finds or family pieces) and I love them. However none of those were ever bought as investments, they might be worth something in the future and I hope the artwork is for the artists I bought them from (I always buy directly from the creator, as a fellow artist I want them to know how much I enjoy their work). These are things that make my home a pleasant place to spend time and since I work from home that is a lot of time.

In addition to not appreciating in value as rapidly as more traditional investments, the capital gains from art and other similar investments are taxed at a higher rate than are stocks and bonds. You should buy art, etc. because you like it, not because you think it will increase in value. If both happen to be the case, then it's a win-win.

I have several pieces of furniture that I hope will last long enough to be antiques. They are pieces that I have made myself as part of the hobby. I could probably sell them for quite a bit more than the materials I put in them, but that wouldn't go over too well with the wife. I don't consider them an investment. I would rather pass them down to my family some day.

And this is why Americans know Jack Squat investing (and Jack left town!).

If anyone things owning art or furniture or booze is an "investment" let MasterPo tell you about a bridge for sale... cracks me up that you write in the third person. I usually have to read your comments twice since the first time I'm only scanning to see if you did it again.

Crystal - Really? MasterPo wasn't aware of that. MasterPo appreciates you pointing that out. You're MasterPo's kind of fellow blogger.


lincmercguy - Never really thought about the furniture I have made but it's a good point. The investment return comes from the sweat equity.

After becoming debt-free we have "invested" in a few modest pieces of art. But it's more about bringing a little culture into the house than the hope of ever selling at a profit. What we buy will be passed down.

@ Crystal Ha Ha....billyjobob always thinks it's funny the way MasterPro writes too. billyjobob got a good laugh out of this.

We have bought some art originals ($50-$600), generally because we know the people, get a good deal, and enjoy what we have. Plus we have walls that are a joy to look at, complete with a "story" behind them.

One artist we know has turned out to have a lucrative art career now, so his stuff has appreciated a good deal. Otherwise, some of the stuff has held up in value, and some probably isn't worth much if we tried to re-sell it. In purely monetary terms, probably a wash.

However, our art is worth much more than regular framed copies of art are worth, even from Target, since frames can often cost quite a bit and re-sale value is negligble.

As with anything, I think this is a know your market and buy what you like and can afford.

Otherwise, I usually "invest" in my own art that I create and have sold my first piece at a show in 2009.

We did get an excellent Art Wolfe framed photo at a non-profit auction at a good price; the money went to support the environment. So that would be one route to start building an art collection of stuff you like if you don't really know the market, because at least your money is "investing" in a good cause.

I've built several nice pieces of furniture over the years and I suppose those might be valuable someday. What is valuable? Well, to answer that I look to the Simpsons. To quote one of the mobsters when Krusty the Klown is playing poker and puts up his daughter's violin as collateral, "It's not worth much cash, but it's sentimental value is through the roof"

My kids might fight over the sentimental value but I genuinely doubt there's much cash in it...

In addition my wife and I buy antique furniture to meet our needs. To me, it is foolish to buy a brand new piece of particle board junk when you can buy the real thing used for about the same amount of money and the real thing will hold it's value.

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