How do I sell my wine collection?

Have a Wine Collection That You Want or Need to Sell?  

  • Don’t drink what you have in your cellar any longer? 
  • Are you moving or downsizing? 
  • Do you have too much wine?
  • Has someone passed?
  • Has your health changed?
  • Don’t want or need the wine in your home? 
  • Do you just need the money?

    Whatever your reason, selling your wine has never been easier or more profitable. With Big Hammer Wines, you have a trusted expert who will offer you the best price. Our unique business model allows us to beat any competitor’s offer. 

    Options for Selling Your Wine Collection

    Options for Selling Your Wine Collection

    There are many ways to sell a wine cellar from a live auction to eBay. You want to make the most money you can. But you also want to deal with someone you can trust. 

    Traditionally, auctions were the place to sell fine wine. Some collectors sold single bottles while others sold entire collections. Today you can:

    • Sell an entire collection to one buyer such as an auction house, a broker or a private individual. This might be simple, taking less time and effort on your part, but it can be costly.
    • Sell individual bottles. This takes a lot of time and effort for very uncertain returns. You can sell individual bottles through local shops or online. Beware though that you are following local liquor laws. Typically, you must be licensed by the state and federal government to sell alcohol.
    • Sell to a local wine shop. Some shops will take collections only of a certain size or a certain type of wine. This option can also take a lot of time and effort. You may not get the results you want.
    • Sell via social media secret groups or through a local wine club. These take time to build relationships and gain access to buyers. Trust can be an issue here. 
    • Find a reputable and knowledgeable buyer. Someone who will give you their full personal attention. They will take control of the entire process, making it quick and easy for you. 

    Process of Selling Wine Collection

    The Process of Selling Your Wine Collection

    Inventory and Appraisal 

    Prepare an inventory that includes the following:

    • Types of wine – red, white,rosé, sparkling
    • Wine name, producer, vintage, country of origin, any special designation
    • Size and number of each bottle
    • Provenance of the wine and condition of each bottle and label – proof of purchase (where, when and price) and storage conditions
    • Include any scores from major critics
    • It’s also helpful to include the current low trading price of the wine (available at Wine-Searcher)

    Get an idea of the value of your wine. Search the internet to find average online prices then reduce that by at least 25%.

    Some companies have a minimum required value. Larger and more expensive collections tend to be easier to sell. 

    With online sales available, it is possible to sell a smaller collection outright or on consignment.

    Send the final inventory list to the seller to get an estimated appraisal. 

    Estimating the Value of Your Collection

    You can estimate the value of your collection with the following steps:

    1. Start with a complete inventory of all the wine you intend to sell.
    2. Search online to get current values for each wine, gathering several different quotes for each.
    3. Average the quotes to determine a baseline value.
    4. Add the average values to get a total value of all the wine together.
    5. Reduce this total by 25% to arrive at a final estimated value.

    This will not be what you can sell your wine for. What you sell it for depends on market conditions, storage conditions, the timing of the sale, proof of provenance, etc.

    But it will give you a general idea so you can decide if it is worth for you to sell your wine.

    Some companies have a minimum required value. Larger and more expensive collections tend to be easier to sell. 

    With online sales available, it is possible to sell a smaller collection outright or on consignment.

    The easiest way to value your collection is to contact a wine expert for a free estimate.

    Packing and Shipping:

    • Find out who will handle transportation and logistics, including insurance
    • Check pickup or delivery options depending on location
    • Get a firm valuation once the wine is delivered

    Marketing and Selling: 

    Look for companies that

    • have wine experts who can fairly evaluate your wine
    • offer free estimates 
    • promise the best returns 
    • fully disclose all fees
    • clearly communicate when payment will be made

    Compare the valuation you receive against the price the company will sell the wine to their customers for. Determine all associated costs.

    Is the buyer transparent in providing the details you need to make a decision?

    Who Should I Contract with to Sell my Wine Collection

    Who Should I Contract with To Sell my Wine Collection? 

    Auction Houses

    • This process can take months
    • Good for selling large and expensive collections of high-demand wines
    • Can charge premiums, fees, commissions, insurance and/or shipping costs
    • Have live and online auctions where the processes and costs vary
    • Offer only one moment to sell the wine (fixed timing depending on the lots)
    • Limited audience (a single group of buyers)
    • Payment made weeks after auction ends less a 20% premium


    • may charge a smaller commission for quick sale
    • potential higher price than auction average 
    • access to more buyers 
    • no timing constraints
    • may not manage shipping and transportation
    • payment only after wine is sold

    Online Wine Community: such as eBay and Craigslist

    • websites with a public platform that allows users to post wines they want to sell
    • costs can be low but sometimes buyers do not pay 
    • private individuals cannot legally ship alcoholic beverages, so shipping is at your own risk
    • not likely to get the best return selling on these platforms

    Big Hammer Wines

    • upon evaluation and delivery, we can make immediate payment
    • no waiting for the wine to be sold
    • our unique low-cost business model ensures the best price for collectors 
    • fast and easy process
    • no hidden or excess fees, we are completely transparent
    • we arrange shipping and transportation

    Big Hammer Wines Buys Wine Collections

    Big Hammer Wines Ensures You Get the Best Price for Your Wine Collection

    Big Hammer is the #1 online wine retailer in California. Our passionate customers want unique, special and limited wines.  Trust us to properly evaluate your collection so you earn more. 

    Unlike a wine auction, we provide estimates upfront, with no hidden fees or charges. Once your wine has been appraised and verified, you will be paid for the entire collection. No waiting for the wine to sell.

    We make it easy and simple for you with a quick turnaround. Our unsurpassed network of buyers means a ready market. And our direct to consumer business model ensures sellers get better returns.

    You now have a better option to sell your wine, no matter your reason. Contact Big Hammer Wines today to sell your wine collection.

    Leave a comment (all fields required)

    Comments will be approved before showing up.