A majority (57%) of wealthy collectors are driven by passion rather than profit, though their passions often overpower their judgment and lead to overpayment or regret, according to a report by UBS Wealth Management Americas.
The report entitled “For love not money” found gold and precious metals (49%), fine art (36%), precious jewelry (26%), stamps (22%), antiques (16%), automobiles (15%) and wine (12%) to be the most collected items.
However, nearly half of the respondents said that they have overpaid for valuables or bought or sold an object they later regretted.
The majority of collectors also said that when in an emergency, they would prefer disposing assets in their portfolio rather than valuables from their collection.
Wealthy investors (those with $5m or more in investable assets) were found to be more inclined towards fine art, with 47% collecting fine art compared to 33% of less affluent investors.
Around half (48%) of wealthy investors were also found to spend more on their collection over time as against 40% of lesser affluent investors. Also, 22% of wealthier investors were found to spend more on their collection than for retirement compared to only 10% of less affluent investors.
However, only 39% of investors were found to be aware of their collections’ full value, with 51% citing they never had their collections appraised and 44% citing they have not insured their collections.
The study also revealed 81% of investors are planning to pass on their valuables to their heirs instead of selling them. On the other hand, 65% of heirs were found uninterested in keeping the collection.
Of inherited collectibles, heirs were found most likely to retain fine art, automobiles, antiques and wine and sell gold, precious metals, coins and stamps.
UBS Wealth Management Americas client strategy officer Paula Polito said: “Investors assign a substantial amount of sentimental value to their collections, but do not always realise their financial value. There is an opportunity for investors to manage collections as a meaningful asset class, by assessing their true worth, and ensuring that they are protected.”