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  #1  
Old 07-26-2020, 12:08 PM
david_l david_l is offline
David L.
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Default Probably going to sell my collection... Advice?

I understand that this is kind of like asking piranhas for skin care advice but here goes. Please don’t message me asking about details or prices. You’ll have a chance to do that at the appropriate time.

Anyway, I’m thinking of selling my entire collection of pre WWI boxing, athletes, and some baseball. I also collect Johnson and Jeannette cards.

I sat down with a calculator and was kind of amazed at what it could potentially bring. It would be nice to put that money toward a down payment on a house as I finally found an area I’d like to settle down in.

I’m a set builder. Most the cards are raw and lower to mid grade. I’m thinking of breaking up most of the domestic sets and maybe trying to sell the foreign sets still completed.

I’m also thinking of starting the sale by sending a list to interested parties first (you’ll see a post in the BST when it’s time). I was thinking of at first I’d have a minimum order of like $300. After that I’d open things up to more buyers and eBay.

I don’t have anything of mega value. Some cards in the mid hundreds and maybe a couple at around 1k. So I probably won’t go the auction house route, but then again, I may for a couple of the more esoteric items.

Anyway, I’m looking for thoughts and advice. Have you done something similar? Is there anything I should know regarding paypal limits? Taxes? Anything else?

Like I’ve said, this is not the time to request a list of items. I’m just looking for some advice regarding selling a beloved collection that took me many years to put together.

Last edited by david_l; 07-26-2020 at 12:09 PM.
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  #2  
Old 07-26-2020, 12:50 PM
david_l david_l is offline
David L.
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Thanks Greg for a really thoughtful email!
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  #3  
Old 07-26-2020, 03:38 PM
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Eric S.
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Good luck man. I've sold my collection 2x and it's easier than it might seem. The only hard part is making the decision. The one thing I would say is take your time and avoid lots. Card by card will reap a bigger profit.

I've been offering a healthy payment for Jeanette T218 error. You can about name your price so write that down for when the time comes if you remember.

Eric
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  #4  
Old 07-26-2020, 06:01 PM
david_l david_l is offline
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Thanks! That's a good point about lots vs. singles. I'm breaking most of my sets up but there's a few that I'm leaning on keeping together. Mostly British sets. I also have a compulsion to keep my N310s together. I dunno. That set has been a lot of work (and joy) putting together and I'm getting relatively close to completing it.

The decision is starting to feel good, oddly enough. I think I'll have to rip the band-aid off though as there's only a few sets and cards that I really want to keep around if I do make the leap (like the T218s).

I've seen accounts of a few members selling off their collections at various points. I know Leon did it and I think Adam (correct me if I'm wrong) had a large purge as well. As I plug the numbers into a calculator it just makes sense. I'll keep you in the loop.

I'll check about a Jeannette error card...
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  #5  
Old 07-27-2020, 11:26 AM
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My purge was a financial disaster. Big lots via AHs are not the way to go if you want to maximize the results. If you do go full retail just understand that you are in for a world of work and it will take a long time. I sell regularly on eBay and it is a major time-suck. Fortunately, I don't seem to have much else to do lately...

As for taxes and the like, you need to decide w/the help of your accountant/tax planner, what you are going to do: sell as capital investments and elect capital gains treatment at the special collectibles rate of 28%, form a schedule c business and sell, form an S-corp to sell, etc. There are considerations to...consider. If you do go the business route, just remember to conduct business in a business-like manner: register for a resale permit, remit sales tax collected, etc.

One thing I'd say is get really, really realistic about what your stuff is really worth. You may have a 'retail' value of $10,000 assuming you sell it lot by lot carefully curated over a year. That same load may not be worth more than $5,000 at auction because of lotting considerations, and might not go for more than $3,000 wholesale. Just depends. If you are sitting on a T226 Jeannette, you can sell that at auction and expect top dollar. But common UK sets in lesser grades, I start most of those at $1-$5 a card, sometimes less. I sold a mixed grade 1938 Churchman's set for $21.50 last week.
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Last edited by Exhibitman; 07-27-2020 at 11:28 AM.
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  #6  
Old 07-27-2020, 08:32 PM
steve B steve B is offline
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I think you are sort of on the right path if you decide to sell.

British cards were collected right from the start, and over there are usually done in full sets, and in nice condition. Some of the less common ones are different, but that's their approach.

Big lots of US stuff here almost always equals a decent discount.

I've only sold a few things here and there, with a couple sales that were big for me but pretty small other wise.
Sold a 48 Bowman set to help fund a ski trip, Most cards were really pretty bad, with a handful of nice ones. I figured I could just build another similar set, with more nicer cards..... I sold it in 1985, and only have maybe 1/4 of the set. I kind of miss the old set.
Sold a couple nice cards here over the years, and miss them. But I know the collectors that have them really like them, so it's ok.... ish…
When our first kid was on the way I offloaded a bunch of extras and other stuff that I'd been doing flea markets with. Gave them to a local auction that took a hefty cut, but they did all the work. All I had to do was point to boxes in storage and say "that one" Plus the stuff in the trunk. (They even took some junk. "Ok, this box is all better cards, but if you want it you have to take these three boxes of junk" "Geez Steve you're killing me" "come on, you know I have to jam you with some C___ if I give you some good stuff, thata's just how it works" I didn't even have to load anything. Some did better than I could do, some worse, but it all sold way faster than I could have sold it. A few things I figure I should have held a little longer, but overall no real regrets.

Now the stuff I don't have plans to sell.... that's different.
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  #7  
Old 07-27-2020, 10:11 PM
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Be careful out there, gang. I've found that it's easier to just send it all to an auction house and make a clean break.
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  #8  
Old 07-27-2020, 10:39 PM
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It depends on your level of patience and your end goals. If you want to realize a bit chunk all at once for your down payment, you'd be best served by showing your figures first to a competent financial advisor and talking over the situation. You may take a significant tax hit depending on your bracket and what avenue you end up selling.

Then, if you decide to sell, I'd probably look for an AH that will work with you on minimums, low commissions, etc.

As Adam experienced, big lots, not matter how much quality tend to go to those who will break up and resell, so your prices get depressed. I used to work for an estate auction company (we mostly did house cleanouts so big lots) and stuff would go for pennies on the dollar unless it was really good stuff.

I thought about selling my collection before the pandemic but having some time to sort through and think about it some more I decided that I would take a slow approach to selling, let my lesser stuff go for whatever it will bring and, at least for now, hold out on better prices for my better stuff. I'm not expecting things to get better work-wise for quite a while, so it's giving me something to do and making up for some of the lost income.
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  #9  
Old 07-28-2020, 10:15 AM
david_l david_l is offline
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Thank you friends for your kind words, time, and advice.

I think in some ways, I’m over thinking this, which I often do. I think my collection/worth is real small time compared to a lot of other collectors here. I’m guessing that my purges bring in just under 10K - which would still be a boost.

I know many collectors and have been in many collector groups so I think I’ll just start there. I really don’t have anything I think that really needs to go to auction at the moment. If I don’t get my prices, I’m still happy to retain some cards. I’m going to keep a few choice cards anyway that I enjoy and am pretty confident they’ll only go up in value. I also have the time to start with individuals as I’m working from home now.

Anyway, thanks again. I’m feeling pretty good about this. I’ve made a list and added prices. I’ll take pictures and put everything together ASAP. Then I’ll post some info here.

Last edited by david_l; 07-28-2020 at 10:16 AM.
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  #10  
Old 07-30-2020, 08:41 PM
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David, my friend, I'm sad to hear you're leaving the party. I wish you the best with your sales and with whatever you do with the funds. I'm looking forward to seeing what you have to sell too. Maybe I'll be lucky enough to have some of your collection reside in my own.

AndyH
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  #11  
Old 07-30-2020, 09:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CobbSpikedMe View Post
David, my friend, I'm sad to hear you're leaving the party. I wish you the best with your sales and with whatever you do with the funds. I'm looking forward to seeing what you have to sell too. Maybe I'll be lucky enough to have some of your collection reside in my own.

AndyH
C'mon. Nobody ever leaves the party for good. I got a $100 that he'll be back in the game within 12 months.
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  #12  
Old 07-31-2020, 08:49 AM
david_l david_l is offline
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Haha thanks friends.

Yeah, I’ll still be around and will definitely be keeping some of my collection. Andy, I’ll drop you a msg.
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  #13  
Old 07-31-2020, 10:20 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tao_Moko View Post
C'mon. Nobody ever leaves the party for good. I got a $100 that he'll be back in the game within 12 months.
You're right. Once the bug bites you you're infected for life.
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The Great T206 Back Stamp Project: Click Here
My Online Trading Site: Click Here
Member of OBC (Old Baseball Cards), the longest running on-line collecting club www.oldbaseball.com
My Humble Blog: Click Here
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  #14  
Old 07-31-2020, 03:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CobbSpikedMe View Post
You're right. Once the bug bites you you're infected for life.
Yeah, we're the Lyme Disease of leisure activities...
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  #15  
Old 08-01-2020, 02:42 PM
david_l david_l is offline
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Hi friends!

Well I’ve created a list/site for my items. I’m going to keep things simple at first. If you want a copy of the list just PM me.

I’m going to let people look it over until the end of Sunday and then I’ll start fulfilling requests.

Probably Monday or Tuesday I’ll post the remainder of the items on the BST.

I did decide to keep more cards than I originally anticipated. I also priced a couple of items that I really love a little high. We’ll call it insurance against future regrets

Thank you everyone for your help.

Last edited by david_l; 08-01-2020 at 02:56 PM.
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  #16  
Old 08-01-2020, 04:11 PM
G1911 G1911 is online now
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Best of luck on the sales my friend! Will miss swapping with you, it's always the good ones that exit the hobby instead of the scummy scammers
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  #17  
Old 08-02-2020, 11:01 AM
david_l david_l is offline
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Thanks Greg,

That’s extremely kind of you to write.

*Holding breath* I put the post up in the BST. Fingers crossed.
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