How to Find the Value of an Antique Vase

While many antique enthusiasts make a hobby of finding the perfect pieces at the right price, many people also enjoy antiques simply for the unique history, character, and warmth they can provide to a home. For those who are not professional antique shoppers, there are a few simple ways to find out what an item is worth. If you own an antique vase, follow these steps to find out its value.

close-up of an ornate Japanese vase
credit: George Doyle/Stockbyte/Getty Images

Finding The Value of An Antique Vase

Step 1

Check your vase for any manufacturer symbols, markings, or backstamps. These are typically found on the bottom, but are sometimes featured along the side. If you do not know the name of the producer or manufacturer of your vase, you need to consult an antique guide, which can usually be found at your local library. Match your vase's symbol with those listed in the book to find the manufacturer of your vase, as well as general pricing information.

Step 2

Research the history of your vase's manufacturer on the internet to develop a more thorough understanding of where, when, and how their vases were made. Look at reviews about the quality and value of the manufacturer's products. If the manufacturer did not exclusively produce vases, review any information which may discuss the rarity of their vases.

Step 3

Visit local antique shows to look at similar pieces, particularly vases from the same manufacturer and time period. This is also an excellent opportunity to speak with a concentrated group of experienced buyers and sellers who may have additional information.

Step 4

Go to online auction websites to view the results of previous auctions and find out the average selling price for vases similar to yours. By thoroughly researching the manufacturer online and in reference guides and comparison shopping at auctions and online auction sites, you should have a clear estimate of the value of your antique vase.