What are collector cards?
These are also known as trading cards and were created centuries ago with the purpose of trading them and also as a marketing tool for their main product. E.g., cigarette packs would have trading cards in them which would be in demand by the little children who would collect them. Many of these collector cards have increased in value over the years and there are many people all over the world who indulge in this hobby.
Do you think it is an investment or just a hobby?
It all depends upon the collector. Many people collect cards for the sheer joy of owning an entire set of their favorite teams or players. There are others who speculate on the demand in the market and the prospective costs of certain cards, their monetary value and how to effectively market those cards for a good sale. Some people do a bit of both – collecting for fun and selling them if a good opportunity arises.
How can I tell the value of the cards that I own?
You should go to a reputable online service to get the evaluation of your cards done or you can even pick an old Beckett book to help you with the approximate pricing. However, the values will not be current in those books and it would be better to go to your local card shop and see someone there who may be knowledgeable in assessing the value of your cards. Picking up a monthly publication would also be a good idea to look at the pricing of sets you may have or recognize. By browsing through the guide, you may have a better idea of which cards to keep an eye out for and vice versa.
Interestingly, eBay is a good place to check out current values of various cards as most amount of single cards are sold on this ecommerce website. Once you are a member, you will be able to see completed auction s and see the final price of what certain cards sold for to give you a better idea on how to price the ones you possess.
Does the condition of the cards contribute to the overall price?
Yes. Cards which have been roughly handled or handled without care will have rough edges and other issues like centering issues, creases and fuzzy corners. All these factors will devalue your cards. In comparison cards kept in mint condition could fetch high prices. Certain cards like rookie cards, autograph cards and special designed ones could go for a premium too so it’s worth your while to keep an eye out for them.
What happens if I purchase a pack from a store and one of the cards is damaged?
It invariably does happen that a few damaged cards will be mixed with the cards you may have in a pack. This is because all the cards are packaged mechanically so there are certain cases where damaged cards find their way into packs. However, just go back to the dealer or store you bought it from and you should be able to get a replacement.