At the time of this writing old window panes are currently “hot” in the Antique/Flea Market trade. At one time, you could pick up a single pane frame, for a dollar or two. At times even snag them for free. You are lucky to find them for under $10 now. We normally pass on ones any higher. But we have paid as high as $40. We are talking wholesale pricing.
We still dig at sales and run into some in the lower price range though. As with anything in this business, “Hot” can turn to “Cold” overnight. We don’t want stuck with something we overpaid on, or stock pile, to find they suddenly have no appeal to buyers.
On the retail side of things, old battered frames are commanding top dollar. $75 is not unusual, and it seems the sky is the limit. depending on what you have. Much depends on a buyers taste and motivation.
It seems like the worse they look, the more people want them. Social media is probably the influencing factor. So many people are re-purposing and posting photos on Pinterest and the like. It gives other people idea’s to create something unique.
We bought a few the past week. We try to flip these and make a few dollars profit. We also invest time and labor in some to increase their selling appeal.
The whole batch we picked up was filthy dirty. It would have taken bottles of windex. The dirt was so thick it would have become a muddy mess. So we lined them up in the back yard and turned the power washer loose on them. We were kind of cautious on some, thinking the glass might literally fall out.
On several the glazing compound was all but completely gone from the exterior side of the glass. We powered off the coating of dirt and with it, half the paint, and putty, that was falling off. One pane we had to re-glaze and set aside for that to cure. Most had to have the wooden frames glued at the corner joints, then pin nailed to prevent them from falling apart. So there is more labor and expense involved, than meets the eye.
We have several that will be held for projects to attempt to return a somewhat larger profit. Others sold as is. The more labor and expense you put into them, the higher the risk of getting no return on your investment. That happens too.
This one shown was embellished with French signage artwork, and will soon be up for sale. Check back to follow some other window projects.