Buying, selling and trading online is fun—and usually efficient—but there is nothing like having a show or a store when it comes to personal interaction between people who love this hobby.
At one of our recent shows here in the Dallas area, one of our collectors/occasional dealers met up with the newest Beckett Hockey analyst. They both arrived at the show between 11 and noon and once they started chatting it was like old friends picking up a conversation from the previous day. When I checked later, I found out they had been communicating with each other via Twitter and Facebook but being at a show where they could get together and meet face to face was something they both enjoyed.
While dealers are there to sell their cards, chatting with the collectors is a great experience for both sides of the table. One of my personal goals for our monthly shows, is to become a place for fellow collectors to come and hang out with their brethren. Having a communal atmosphere can only bring in even more people who want to meet like-minded people. It’s the best kind of social network.
Sometimes, the conversations lead to serious questions, too. One collector was beginning the process of selling a high quality set which he said would rank in the top 10 set in the PSA registry when added. He had two questions for me. The first one was whether he should get the set into the Registry while the second was about how he should go about selling it.
The answer to the first of the two questions is much easier. Yes, you should get the set registered. With many high end collectors loving to play the registry game, there is no downside of adding your set to the registry has only upside as that will add interest among those collectors who wish to attain a high quality set.
The second question is much more difficult to answer. The reason is, selling your cards, just like colleting cards is very much an individual matter. Since everyone collects in their own style, we have collectors like good friend Jj Saenz who prefers base cards over any insert or “hit” card. Meanwhile, there are other super advanced collectors who are only looking for rare or high-end items for their collection. There is an old story about famed super collector Frank Nagy carrying an album with him to the National Convention with cards such as Goudey Ruths and Gehrigs so he had top quality cards to trade for those few cards he felt he still needed for his collection.
The collector’s set is likely worth a few thousand dollars and almost every major auction house would be interested in having that as part of an upcoming auction. While each auction house has a different formula for consignments, the answer of whom to go with really becomes one of who you are most comfortable with. If there is the personal relationship, then in many cases your decision becomes much easier. I know when I chatted with the collector, he mentioned some specific auction houses he had worked with and would be comfortable with selling his items. In my opinion only, you cannot lose with whomever you use.
And if you don’t have a high-end collection and are not comfortable selling your cards yourself, then knowing people is a great way to increase your options if and when the time comes to sell.