Are you a collector? Do you love running across rare items at garage sales, happy in the knowledge that you found something special? Have you watched the TV show “Storage Wars,” and found yourself envious of the people who buy and sell unclaimed property for a living? Well, we found a series of auctions here on eBay you may be interested in knowing about.
Over the course of the next few weeks, the Massachusetts State Treasury department is offering a series of auctions for unclaimed property. We had to wonder what exactly constitutes “unclaimed property,” and looked to the State of Massachusetts for the answer:
“Any financial asset with no activity by its owner for an extended period of time. This includes savings accounts, checking accounts … stocks …safe deposit boxes, and uncashed benefit checks, gift certificates, etc. Unclaimed Property does not pertain to land, houses or real estate of any kind.”
The Massachusetts State Treasury ran this auction very successfully on eBay last year, too (somehow we missed it). We thought that it would be fun to highlight some of the items on offer, should they spark your interest. Perhaps you assume, as we did, that unclaimed property implies unloved property, and that you wouldn’t find yourself tempted to bid on others’ forgotten belongings.
But we were (happily) proven wrong, and found some cool items sure to intrigue some eBay shoppers.
The most expensive item up for auction is this (1) 18K YG COIN BRACELET, 61.6 GRAMS:
Like many of the items up for sale, this one stirs up some questions. First, regarding the bracelet’s worth: There is the value of the gold itself, of course, but are these gold coins also valuable as collectibles? Unlike the price of gold, the current price of $2,425 is holding steady.
This piece is especially interesting, a (1) PLATINUM DIA. SOLITAIRE RING WEIGHING 3.90 GRAMS, EURO CUT,CHIPPED:
Since diamonds are one of the hardest materials in the world, how is it that this one was chipped? While the mind wanders over the possible stories – a jilted lover throwing her engagement ring out the window, for example — the truth is many diamonds have flaws in them that could ultimately result in small chips. The thing to look for, is if the diamond can be re-cut and salvaged. This added step probably explains why the bidding on this ring is relatively low, at least right now.
Finally, we found this intriguing lot of coins, one of many listed. These are for these US TEN CENT SILVER, $27.40 FACE VALUE:
Since their face value is less than $30, and the current high price is $610, there must be something pretty special about these dimes, aside from their being 90 percent silver. We can see a number of Winged Liberty Head dimes scattered in there. If one of them was a 1916D dime, it could be worth anywhere from $1,000 to $14,000! Now that would be quite the unclaimed find.
The title of this auction is “The Thrill of the Hunt,” and there are indeed way too many items to list individually here at eBay Stories. If you want to see what is currently up for sale, take a look at the complete list here. According to the seller, the items up for auction are the contents of safe deposit boxes that have been held in Special Deposit for seven years by various institutions.
We would like to point out, though, that more items are going to be posted daily, with a total of about 2,000 pieces through early December. Included in the auction are more diamond rings, currency of various denominations, and even antiques. You’ll just need to keep checking in to see what treasures you can uncover.
Oh, and if you recognize a piece for auction on eBay as yours (and you were or are a resident of Massachusetts), simply provide proof of ownership and the Massachusetts State Treasury will return the item to you. If the item is already sold, the owner will receive the purchase price.
Good luck, and happy hunting!