Should You Invest In a $5,000 Antique Rug?
One of the few things that drives me crazy is sharing a home with a significant other who insists on redecorating and swapping out furniture every season. I am very set in my ways, am not a fashionista, and cannot muster enough energy to pretend like I care about interior decorating reality TV shows. Still, I am lucky to live with a woman who understands that a life without style is not one worth living.
I don’t consider myself to be completely hopeless when it comes to interior decorating style. It’s just hard for me to get worked up about it. Unless someone can tell me where to buy a good replica painting of those dogs playing poker, its futile trying to get me enthused about the subject. Still, I realized that when you have a relationship and family, its not just enough to compromise. You have to show initiative to make a house into a home.
So, I began thinking about how I could contribute ideas to decorating the home. I have always been intrigued by antique rugs, also known as oriental rugs. I have learned from unenthusiastically watching interior decorating shows that a rug can tie in all the aesthetic element of a room. However, an antique rug is a significant financial investment. Just buying an entry-level antique rug for beginners can cost as much as $5,000.
The more serious antique rug collectors usually pay tens of thousands, or hundreds of thousands, for their rugs. Some antique rugs cost millions of dollars. Is this a good investment to put in a domesticated, family home?
Wages of Maintenance
Buying an antique rug is akin to making a commitment to maintaining it for life as though it were a living being. An antique rug is a piece of woven art that can tell the story of the culture of the weaver and the time period it was crafted in, for those in the know. It is a piece of art. So, is it a good idea to buy one to display in a family home? I don’t think it’s a good idea to buy a $5,000 antique rug just to lay it down in a high traffic area so children and pets can stain and soil it at will.
They can’t be exposed to direct sunlight for long periods of time either. Vacuum cleaning is the best way to clean them, as deep washing will damage or fade them. So, you can either put it in a study or a room with minimal traffic. However, if you are not committed to visually appreciating it as much as possible, then you are just buying one to hide it.
Hard to Insure
An antique rug that is damaged in a fire or flood could turn out to be a complete loss. Most homeowner insurance policies won’t insure them. You might have to take out a separate, dedicated insurance policy just on the rug. Imagine budgeting that premium with the monthly car insurance and mortgage payments.
I am thinking about just getting a good $300 area rug with arresting visual aesthetics. It’s not that I am giving up on getting a legitimate antique rug. As an investment, its just not very practical for me to own one now with a family, pets, and a busy home. You can buy one as a family heirloom or status purchase. Yet, financially maintaining and insuring it could end up being a costly expense in the long run.
Allen Francis is a full-time writer, prolific comic book investor and author of The Casual’s Guide: Why You Should Get Into Comic Book Investing. Allen holds a BA degree from Marymount Manhattan College. Before becoming a writer Allen was an academic advisor, librarian, and college adjunct for many years. Allen is an advocate of best personal financial practices including saving and investing in your own small business.