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Why are Luxury Watches so Expensive?

Even a longstanding collector may raise an eyebrow from time to time when they see the cost of a luxury watch. However, when you take a step back and look at everything that goes into the design, production and distribution of just one timepiece, it’s a little easier to understand why something so small costs so much.

R&D

Timepiece components can take years to develop. When purchasing a luxury watch, you’re partially paying for the months or years of research and development that were invested before the manufacture and sale of the product could even begin.

Complexity

Any watch enthusiast knows there’s way more than what meets the eye when it comes to luxury timepieces. In fact, a watch may have hundreds of small handmade parts. Furthermore, when a brand develops and manufactures their own in-house movements or custom components, things become even more complex and more time and money is required.

Time and expertise

Many luxury watches take years and a set of highly skilled craftspeople to make. There could be dozens of employees just in a finishing department alone and several trained for years before they even produced their first watch.

Materials

The materials used to craft luxury watches simply aren’t cheap. Precious metals, diamonds and rare stones are frequently used (inside and out) to make high quality timepieces. Oftentimes, the harder, shinier and more durable, the more expensive.

Quality assurance

One of the benefits in buying a luxury timepiece is that the wearer can have confidence in its reliability. After a timepiece is assembled, it is tested over and over again, ensuring its functionality, endurance and longevity.

Limited quantities

Many watch brands only produce a limited quantity of each model. However, they may still spend the same amount of money, or even more, to develop a watch with smaller quantities as they do one that is mass produced. Because the cost of R&D, manufacturing, distribution and more is split up among pieces sold, the lower the number of watches produced, the higher the cost of each individual watch.

Brand value

Luxury watch brands are synonymous with lavish lifestyles and exclusivity. When you invest in one of these timepieces, you’re buying the assurance that only comes from a well-known brand with a reputation for excellence.

Hopefully this offers a bit more insight into the factors that influence the cost of a luxury timepiece. The good news is that the right watch can both serve you and hold its value (or end up increasing in value!) for years to come.

About The Author: Scott Meller

Born and raised in Los Angeles, Scott joined Feldmar Watch Company, Inc. under the tutelage of his father, Sol. As a fourth generation family member, Scott’s forward-thinking business acumen has placed Feldmar on the cutting edge of the luxury timepiece market. Scott’s favorite part about working at Feldmar is being a part of his family’s multi-generational business and having worked alongside his father. His accomplishments are many, including the expansion and remodel of the Feldmar flagship store, as well as a second location inside The Beverly Hilton.

Since attending Santa Monica College, Scott has become an expert in the technical aspects of the timepieces sold at Feldmar. Each year, he travels to Switzerland—the watchmaking capital of the world—to attend the Baselword Watch & Jewelry Fair and build upon his extensive knowledge of this quickly-evolving industry.

Scott is very proud of the way Feldmar customers are put first: “We regularly go out of our way to meet the needs of our clients. A client once purchased a rather significant watch as a birthday gift for his brother who lived in New York. Our client asked how we were going to deliver the gift and we responded with the typical answer, we would ship it by FedEx. After we answered his question, we could tell that he wanted a more personalized experience for the delivery and offered to have it hand-delivered by one of our associates. He lit up at the thought, and so off went one of our associates to New York City for the day to hand-deliver the gift.”

Read more from Scott Meller

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