German-Helmets.com  - The Online Reference Guide to World War II German Helmets 1933-1945

    Questions & Answers: Helmet Values

Answers to some of the most commonly asked questions regarding helmet values are described in this section.  Additional topics can be explored by linking to one of the subject areas listed below.

 
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What is the value of my helmet?

 

The given value of any helmet is based on market trends and buyer interest.  Like any antique, the type or model including overall condition is very important when considering value.  Generally speaking, the better the condition of the helmet the more it will be worth.  Most German helmets found today in attics or cellars are in "average" condition.  Those that have been stored well over the years and have all of their components intact and in good shape are 'above average' or possibly "excellent" by comparison.  Buyer interest really determines value.  Some buyers are looking for below average prices, while others might be happy to pay above average prices just to acquire a given piece.  An "average" and common German combat helmet that is entirely original and unaltered is going to have a baseline value of several hundred dollars in today's collector marketplace. Civic model helmets generally start a bit less.  Some helmets can be valued hundreds or thousands of dollars above this base-line depending on factors related to condition and rarity.  Anything that has been done to modify or alter its appearance will quickly devalue a given helmet even if it is a rare or scarce variety.

How can I have my helmet accurately appraised?

 

There are several options that you can choose from that are beneficial.  The choice you make is highly dependent on the value you place on the appraiser's knowledge in this area.  The more experience the appraiser has with helmets the more likely you are to achieve a good and solid estimate of true value.

  • Personal Appraisal:  You can estimate the value of your helmet by attempting to compare a similar model to those for sale on websites or online auctions.  This can be problematic however in the sense that vendors or dealers in militaria can often over price a helmet simply because they can get those prices from their established clientele.  In other words, a dealer may be able to sell a helmet for $975 US but you may only be able to get $450 US because you are not a full-time dealer in this area.  In addition, online auctions produce selling and buying prices that fluctuate greatly on a daily basis.  As a result, they do not always help when it comes to knowing exact values.

  • Professional Appraisal:  You can have your helmet appraised by a knowledgeable helmet collector or 'expert' that knows what typical values are within the buying and selling marketplace.  Some militaria dealers with websites are accustomed to pricing helmets and would be more than willing to assist in this area.  The webmaster of German-Helmets.com also provides free online appraisals and will make an offer to purchase your helmet in the event that you are interested in selling it.  Other dealers or collectors tend to charge between $25 and $50 for an online appraisal which is common in the hobby.

  • Show Appraisal:  Another source for getting appraisal of value is to take your item to a local gun or military show.  These generally take place at civic centers or fairgrounds several times per year.  In addition, very large and well established collector shows exist around the United States as well as in Europe and the United Kingdom.  Show appraisals are "real-time" estimates with the opportunity to directly sell your item to a show dealer.  However, you should be aware of the fact that show prices are often inflated and dealers normally offer between 25% and 50% of actual value when purchasing.  The reason for this is simple as it relates to their need to allow for adequate mark-up when it comes to reselling your item to their regular customers.

Will the value of my helmet increase with time?

 

Yes.  Like most antiques the value of your helmet will increase with time.  It is not uncommon to see values climbing an average of 2% to 7% per year.  The value, once again, is really based on buyer interest, market trends, the economy, and the overall condition of the helmet.

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