Art Investment 101- The Ultimate Guide to Types, Buying, Selling & Storing

In this day and age, so many long-term investors are looking to try and diversify their portfolio by buying different asset classes. Some of them want to buy rare coins and jewels, others want to invest in fine wines. One investment class that is gaining traction is art. Fine art can enhance your home, and it can also evoke very powerful emotions. It appreciates in value by simply hanging on your wall and believe it or not, you don’t need to invest a lot of money either.

Types of Art

There are many types of art out there. If you’re a novice when it comes to art then you may see art as being a painting, but this isn’t always true. Sometimes art can be a drawing, photography, mixed media, digital creations or prints. 

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Originals VS Copies

Original works are by far the most highly-valued pieces. Even a copy can be worth a significant amount though. If you want to know if your copy is going to be worth something, then you need to arm yourself with knowledge. Take a look below to find out more.


Originals are one-of-a-kind.  The rarity of the original tends to justify the price.


Even though a print is a copy, it’s still a work of art and therefore can have high value. A print has quality and clarity that rivals the original and it’s a fantastic way for you to get into art if you have limited funds. Limited edition prints tend to go for more, along with autographed prints.


Gicleés are the highest quality of print around. Pronounced zhee-klay, it’s got a resolution which is far superior and some might even say that it is museum-quality. They tend to come with a certificate of authenticity too.


Reproduction prints are original works without a limited printing run. They are ideal if you’re on a budget but not worth much beyond that.

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Where can you Buy Art?

If you’re on a budget, then the best place for you to buy art would be online. When you do buy art online, you can then take advantage of the lower prices without compromising quality. If you are a novice however then seeing the art in person may be a much better idea. This way you can see the personal connection you have to the piece and you can also feel the emotion it evokes. You can buy second-hand art online with ease if you want to get started.

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Caring for your Art

Caring for your art is so important. Sure, common sense goes a long way, but beyond that there are some do’s and don’ts that you need to know if you want to preserve your collection to the best of your ability.


Before you even think about handling any works of art, it’s vital that you clean your hands and dry them properly. Removing jewellery is also a good idea. Pick up a painting by the sides of the frame, and avoid touching the surface.


Use an artist’s brush that is made out of natural hair to clean your art. Without applying pressure, brush in one direction until the entire piece has been done. When you’ve done that, then repeat in another direction until it’s clean. Don’t dust if any paint is cracking or flaking. Dust and dirt can degrade paintings too, so regular cleaning is key. If you require significant cleaning, hire a professional and never use chemicals or kitchen cleaners. Your pieces may not be worth a lot now, but if they are in the future, it’s vital to look after them now.


If you need to store your art, keep it away from direct sunlight and away from damp. Keep it away from cellars, basements, fireplaces and boilers. Storing multiple paintings in a painting rack is a good idea, in a room that is free from fluctuating temperatures.

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Selling Art

Selling your art can be just as demanding and just as time-consuming as starting your collection. Before approaching a selling venue, have all of your pieces appraised. Don’t count on the auction house to do it for you, and also take into account commission too. The one advantage of dealers and galleries is the network of clients. The venue may be able to expedite a sale quickly which can work in your favour. An auction house will usually charge a selling commission of around 15% and a buyer’s commission of around 10%. When you buy pre-loved art, you can of course, save and therefore make more profit at this stage.

Selling on the internet is another option, but you do have to make sure that you package your art properly and that you only sell through well-established sites. This is the best way for you to make the most profit and you would be surprised at how easy it is for you to not only get a fair price, but the best buyers.