Non-Sport Update's Card Talk
How do you plan on disposing of your collection?

This topic can be found at:

January 14, 2014, 03:56 PM
How do you plan on disposing of your collection?
Originally posted by chesspieceface:
Mine will be shredded and made into a biodegradable coffin.

The best solution yet! Big Grin


Reliving my childhood one piece of painted plastic and slab of cardboard at a time.
January 14, 2014, 07:38 PM
In collecting comic books and coins, I've noticed people pay huge premiums for items which are graded, and then graded again by a second company. And then even more if they were held by a notable collector. This might be heresy to some, but why not create a stamp, logo, or initial base to use, and then deface your super collectibles so that they will be permanently linked to you.

If you want the cards linked to you, but don't want to deface your cards, you can have them graded by Beckett (BGS), and they offer a pedigree personalization service, where you can add a line of text to the label. So you can add "From the XXXXX collection." for example.

Beckett Pedigree Personalization

If you do decide to leave your collection to your family in a will, at least include a detailed list of the best cards in the collection, with an estimated sale price. Your family will be a lot more careful about selling the cards, or will care a lot more about keeping them, if they have some clue about what the collection is worth. They also won't sell off a $20k collection for $500!

Also, while it may seem daunting to sell your collection on ebay, just make sure you have a plan. You can decide each week to sell off one set (I think most of us can handle the amount of work that would take). In a year, you can have 52 sets sold off. That's the key, divide up a seemingly impossible huge task into small doable chunks.

If your goal is just to sell off your collection as quickly as possible, then start your items at auction at $0.99. They will sell quick... of course you will probably lose money. If you can be at least a little patient, start your auctions off at 50-75% of what the item is worth (or if you really don't need to sell them quickly, start them at 90%), and you will probably do much better.
January 15, 2014, 12:42 PM
I may be traveling in the wrong collecting circles, and I'm sure my own card collection is hardly museum worthy Big Grin, but I don't see much interest in graded cards anymore. It was an idea that kind of peaked when people did not get the added premiums when selling graded cards that they were expecting. In fact, many buyers hated slabbed cards and preferred to stay away from them when it was a modern issue.

There are certain cards and certain circumstances where I can see the advantages to get a grading service, but just to personally identify your cards to you is one I hadn't heard. I don't see the point, especially if you are talking about disposing of your collection. By having random, average cards graded you are actually limiting the number of people who will be interested in buying them and you are incurring added expense that you may not get back in the end.

And speaking to CPF bio-degradable coffin, it reminds me of the old Viking funeral ritual where everything the deceased had was burned up with the body on a boat. Seems like an excellent way of taking it with you. Big Grin

Of course I think they sometimes wanted their wives to be on the boat too, and you know that was taking the notion way too far. Guess that's one of the reasons why we don't see any Viking funerals anymore.Wink

This message has been edited. Last edited by: Raven,
January 15, 2014, 03:44 PM
Ace of Hearts
I'm taking them with me. Try and stop me.
Ace Mad
January 16, 2014, 04:23 AM
cardcollectors uk
I've spoken to quite a few customers about this, and none of them had really thought about it. I think a good idea would be to go through your collection and jot down the value of the cards. We all like to look through our collections, and I'd suggest using Jeff Allenders' site so you don't have to write everything down, just print out a page for each set, and write prices down next to the cards. At least if your family has an idea they were worth $20,000 then hopefully they wont sell them for $500. About a year ago, a customer came to one of the UK shows with a Journey into Mystery 83 (1st appearance of Thor) he sold it to a dealer for $2000. He'd bought it in a yard sale for $2.That's what really stated me thinking.I'll be gone, but with the correct information, maybe it'll pay for a family holiday rather than a weekend away for two. I'm going to make sure my family knows the value (or relative value) of my stuff. Then it's their choice.

What do you call a set missing more than 10 cards?
April 23, 2015, 08:28 PM
I'm late to this party but the private auction is probably the best option if you want to unload your collection while you're still here.

I think anyone with a really big collection might want to spring for having an auction catalogue printed up. I would think the cost would be recouped from potential bidders wanting one as a future reference. I have friends who have kept old auction catalogues for the same reason. Topps had an auction years ago and the catalogue became a collectible itself, selling and reselling years afterward.

Originally posted by promoking:
Many of us on this forum have been collecting for decades and dare I say are no longer spring chickens.
I know that quite a few members have amassed collections worth a lot of money. So, whether you're contemplating disposing of your treasures tomorrow or in 20 years, have you made plans as to what will happen to your collection?
Here are some ideas: Will you leave it in your will? Give it to charity? Sell it to a dealer? Sell it at auction? Be buried with it? donate it to the Wolfie foundation?

I for one, have been grappling with this dilemma. I know that my kids wouldn't know where to begin in disposing of the collection if I were to pass prematurely. Therefore, leaving it to them is not an option. The question I often ask myself is when do I sell it, how and to whom?
I have rarely seen contemporary card collections sell thru the auction catalogs of major auction houses. I routinely see stamps, baseball cards, autographs, space memorabilia etc.., but almost never non-sports cards. Why is that?

A few years back, a major collector set up a private online auction, the word spread, and he was quite successful in selling the bulk of his holdings. This may be the way to go. The costs and fees would be much lower. on the other hand, it's a lot of work!
I would appreciate you thoughts and opinions on this topic. Please be as detailed as possible in your explanation.

April 23, 2015, 08:38 PM
Yeah, once you're gone, there won't be anyone left to care about the pile of little pieces of cardboard. However, I would rather have my collection be on a table for $1/card at a relative's yard sale than dumped into the recycling can (or worse the garbage). Some card collector might come across it and it would be his/her lucky find to mention on Card Talk.

Originally posted by Raven:
I know that this question has been posed on Card Talk in the past and there is probably no good answer to it unless you are lucky enough to know someone in your family or have a good friend who will appreciate getting your collection.

I have come to the conclusion that most of us do not. So then it becomes an issue of when and how do you want to sell your cards. If it comes to that I'm afraid that a bulk sale will yield you pennies on the dollar and individual sales are time consuming. Either way, it will probably turn out that our cards are no where near as valuable to anyone else as they are to us.

So I say, why bother unless you need the money? We don't think about getting rid of our clothes, or our furniture, or our cars, or our houses prematurely. Mention all your stuff in your will, enjoy it until the day you die, and let someone else get rid of it if they must. Wink

April 24, 2015, 06:39 AM
A couple days ago, I discovered I had screwed up a set in my oddball collection, leaving me one short on a very difficult to find card and years lost looking for it cause I didn't notice it (cause counting to 18 is hard). I have been having some difficulty getting over my stupidity and in the course of a conversation with my husband, he said "what difference does it make if you've no intent to sell your collection? It'll just end up in some estate sale somewhere and most people won't even know or care." Harsh and not a comfort for the missing card, but at least I know what the plan is Wink

Star Trek cards rule, everything else drools.
April 24, 2015, 04:36 PM
David R
My grandfather left us a huge Lionel Trains collection, from the 1940-50s, which has been stored away in boxes since he died in 1975. No one in my family has opened the boxes in 40 years. However, all were stored in the garage, where I imagine the elements have gotten to everything, so who knows what condition the trains are in at this point. I am almost 42 years old, and yet I have never seen what is inside the boxes. I would hope that my sons take better care of my cards than we did with Grandpa's trains !
April 24, 2015, 04:52 PM
Originally posted by David R

I would hope that my sons take better care of my cards than we did with Grandpa's trains !

Don't bet on it. Shake Head

Come, it is time for you to keep your appointment with The Wicker Man.
April 24, 2015, 05:18 PM
Hedgehog Witch
The saying of: One person's junk is another person's treasure can also work in reverse. One person's treasure is another person's junk.

I think you should just enjoy your collection while you're here. Smile Maybe make a little list of your more valuable cards as pointers for someone else to consider and then once that bucket has been kicked you won't care anyway and it's up to whomsoever is left to do with it as they will. It's sad, but people all have different interests and they aren't necessarily going to see the point of trading cards.

I'm not unduly worried about that...nor my LOTR sword collection. Someone will find something to do with it all, even if they turn it over to a house clearance company. Big Grin I'm leaving my stuff to my niece and nephew so it will be up to them.
I make sure to enjoy my hobbies now and worry about tomorrow when it arrives. Smile
April 24, 2015, 05:51 PM
Originally posted by David R:
My grandfather left us a huge Lionel Trains collection, from the 1940-50s, which has been stored away in boxes since he died in 1975. No one in my family has opened the boxes in 40 years. However, all were stored in the garage, where I imagine the elements have gotten to everything, so who knows what condition the trains are in at this point. I am almost 42 years old, and yet I have never seen what is inside the boxes. I would hope that my sons take better care of my cards than we did with Grandpa's trains !

If you have no use for those Lionels and no sentimental attachment, you could be sitting on a nice sum. There are lots of train stores and shows that are looking for old trains and Lionel is a main name. If the engines are in running condition, or someone can get them in running condition, they are worth good money. Even the cars without a working engine have value. You should check it out.
April 24, 2015, 05:58 PM
David R
Well, my grandfather died when I was 1, and I have no memories whatsoever of him. Putting that issue aside, I have absolutely no idea as to the condition of the contents of the box, much less what is inside. About 10 years ago I bought a Lionel price guide, and I saw that some trains are worth thousands. However, like I said, no human being (or E.T.) has opened the boxes since 1975, so no one in the family has any clue as to what we have
April 24, 2015, 06:07 PM
Time to open then. Wink Big Grin
April 25, 2015, 04:14 AM
My collection has all gone. Got a pittance (very small amount of cost) but just wanted it out of sight.

I don't miss them. Life is it's own priority now.
April 25, 2015, 10:04 AM
a very thought provoking question. My personal thoughts are. If you got into this hobby as an investor or your family needs the money for whatever then sell your stuff piece by piece overtime so you can get the maximum amount of what it's worth. If you're in this hobby strictly because you enjoy it then here's a thought. As a kid I always enjoy "gum cards". A friend of my family saw I had a bunch of cards and the next time he was over he handed me a shoebox I lifted the lid and it was filled cards planet of the apes, James Bond, Monster laffs a few Beatles and many different Batman cards. I was in heaven! No complete sets but enough to get me started to try to collect them over the years it was a lot of fun. So when the think it's time to pass them on I will go to say the Philly non-sports show talk to the promoters and make sure a few kids get a shoebox surprise to help jump start a lifetime of love for this hobby. Because no matter how big or small our collection is, we are merely caretakers for the next-generation.
April 25, 2015, 11:27 AM
That's a great idea Stingh2 and it is very generous to do that for kids.

Unfortunately I know from my experience that it isn't as easy as it used to be to give cards away. Many of today's non-sport products are unsuitable for children or the subjects are not interesting to them. I have given my neighbors' kids some Marvel base sets, and that's fine, but most of the other titles I have I can't give them. I do not want their parents complaining about the one or two pictures that they might find too violent, or too sexy, or too whatever for their kids to have. It is not worth the hassle.

No good deed goes unpunished as they say. Big Grin
April 26, 2015, 02:14 AM
I remember when Garbage Pail Kids were corrupting the kids. And not too many decades earlier, your Marvel base sets would have raised the ire of some parents in regions outside NYC.
April 26, 2015, 08:50 AM
Originally posted by allender:
I remember when Garbage Pail Kids were corrupting the kids. And not too many decades earlier, your Marvel base sets would have raised the ire of some parents in regions outside NYC.

Oh yeah, it's not the kids, it's always the parents. Wink

But the other funny thing was, awhile back I had given some of those history cards to a friend's kid. What could go wrong with history?

Well the kid really liked them and wanted his mother to get him more cards. She asked me how much they cost and I told her it depends what you buy. Those were around $3 a pack and I buy by the box. She had a canary. Now the kid wanted something she wasn't going to get him.

And that is why I stopped showing my cards to any of my friends' kids anymore. Big Grin
May 14, 2015, 07:21 AM
Sounds like many agree that the first step is realistic cataloging, documentation and pricing.

I think even family members not very interested in the hobby will be more inclined to evaluate a list and its contents than being faced with having to go through everything from scratch.

Slabbing is so friggin expensive and the price differences between fractions of a grade point have just gotten stupid. 50 people can pull a card from a pack, send it in for grading and only two will get a 9.9 or 10. Maybe with todays collecting habits that is the only way to determine the best of the best.....but it is still a little depressing.

I can agree with the process if you want to authenticate something. I have a handful of through the mail autograph cards that would receive a benefit from sending them off.