Hidden Treasures

​​There are mysterious, private art collections containing sculptures, paintings, etc., by some of the western world’s greatest artists. Mysterious because they contain works you won’t find hanging on the walls of wealthy people’s homes or in major museums. Instead, these works are hidden inside strange storage facilities called freeports. We’ll come back to these buildings.

But first, we wanted to tell you why these treasures are sitting in the dark, away from public and private view. It’s because the wealthy treat their art collections like land or homes. This means they treat their art as physical assets: they expect their collections to grow in value over time, making them wealthier.

Protecting All That Money

These collectors invest millions, sometimes billions of dollars, in art. So it’s natural that they want to keep their investments safe. Safe from thieves, temperature, humidity, and… taxes. That’s why freeports are the perfect solution for so many in that world. They’re usually located near airports because art is an international business; Plain-looking, so as not to draw any attention; Climate-controlled, so the art doesn’t breakdown over time; Manned by guards, and allows collectors to avoid taxes on their precious artifacts. 

Avoiding Taxes

Not paying taxes on their art is one of the biggest reasons freeports are so popular among private art collectors. And no wonder, the tax on a piece could be tens of thousands or hundreds of thousands of dollars. Also, governments don’t limit how long the art can remain in storage, meaning a collector could keep their art in a freeport for 50 years or more and just watch their net worth grow. This practice is allowed because freeports are like customs at the airport, where international travelers and their things are inspected before they enter the country. But with freeports, collectors can have their artwork remain “in process” for as long as they want. Only when they take the items out of storage, do they have to pay taxes. 

The Average Collector and Artist

If you’re a collector needing an affordable, long-term solution for your cherished collection, or even if you’re a working artist with more pieces than you have room for, climate-controlled storage is a great option!  To find a FreeUp location near you, click here.