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Old 10-22-2009, 10:23 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default The best way to make money off cards: Singles, Lots, Boxes & Cases

What are some of your tips & tricks of the trade?
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Old 10-22-2009, 10:33 AM   #2 (permalink)
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First step would be, don't buy boxes unless you're planning on selling them sealed in the distant future (of a good year).
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Old 10-22-2009, 10:35 AM   #3 (permalink)
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KNOW YOUR PRODUCT. Study breaks of previous years. Establish reasonable prices. HAVE A GAME PLAN.
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Old 10-22-2009, 10:39 AM   #4 (permalink)
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HAVE A GAME PLAN.

I agree, but I had to laugh out-loud when I though about how many times Upper Deck threw a wrench in our "gameplans"
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Old 10-22-2009, 10:39 AM   #5 (permalink)
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First step would be, don't buy boxes unless you're planning on selling them sealed in the distant future (of a good year).
so just purchase singles and then resell later?
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Old 10-22-2009, 11:02 AM   #6 (permalink)
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purchase huge lots, and sell singles, you can buy lots cheaper than singles, and sell cheap and still make some profit
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Old 10-22-2009, 01:18 PM   #7 (permalink)
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First step would be, don't buy boxes unless you're planning on selling them sealed in the distant future (of a good year).
+1.
#1) Dont open up any packs/boxes/cases.

#2) Profit is profit, don't get greedy.

#3) calculate all fees associated with the a transaction. You buy a card for 100 you want to resell on ebay. KNOW that you need to sell the card for $116 delivered to cover paypal, ebay and shipping charges before you can even think of earning a profit.

#4) Buy tomorrow's star today. This is not necessarily rookies, actually it is probably harder to make consistent $ off rookies as players already in the league. Why? All the product hasn't been released yet....who knows if that SP listing for 20 for example won't be 3.50 once the contender gets released....and the fact that rookies are unknown and rarely see significant time their first year. Football is as fickle as it gets. The guy who caught 10 balls for 250 yards one week can catch 2 balls for 18 yards the next two weeks combined. Make sure your investment includes players that are part of the offense on a regular basis.....I rather have my guy go for 60 yards 3 weeks in a row then break out with 125 yards then go from 1 catch to 5 catches to 1 catch to 2 catches to 9 catches.....if they build up a following of being a fan favorite you will reap the rewards when they have that break out game.

#4) When the card has doubled in the past week, look elsewhere for profit.
You aren't going to make any $ on Percy Harvin when his card sold for 45 last week and 75 this week. Chances are a new product is being released and it won't even be 45 the following week.

#5) You are probably buying closer to the ceiling then the floor. I was about to buy a card for $16 just the other day and said.....wait.....the player is on a bye week.....what do I think I can seriously flip this for.......why not take a risk and set a snipe for one in auction for 12.51 and hope for the best? I did and won it for 6.50. That way I can make a quick $10 when it comes in and list it for 19.99 when he comes off the bye.

Crap, meeting time....to be continued

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Old 10-22-2009, 01:30 PM   #8 (permalink)
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figure out how to open the back door to Upper Deck.
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Old 10-22-2009, 01:37 PM   #9 (permalink)
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The BEST way? When you figure it out, you let me know.
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Old 10-22-2009, 01:46 PM   #10 (permalink)
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The best way I've found to make money off of cards is to not buy them. I always have more money at the end of the month when I don't buy cards and resell them. Just my advice.
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Old 10-22-2009, 03:53 PM   #11 (permalink)
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For those who do alot of 'rip and flip', other then the occasional lucky big card pull, is it ever actually profitable at all? Or are you just flipping to get some money back to be able to open more product??

AND, do you actually collect anything, or just sell them all? I mean, say you were a Yankee fan, and collected Yankees, but you are a rip and flip guy, and you pulled a cut Ruth auto or something - do you keep it for the PC, or flip it?

Just curious
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Old 10-22-2009, 04:03 PM   #12 (permalink)
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I would vote selling singles is the best way to make money if you have the ability to not get attached to your cards. There are reasonable exceptions like vintage and rarities but if you hold when a card is hot you will lose. I do it all the time because I also collect so I usually miss out on the right time to sell because I'm unwilling to compromise my collection. If you can avoid that then singles are the way to make a buck. Unopened also applies since you have to avoid opening which is easier to do if you don't collect and have little attachment to your investment.
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Old 10-22-2009, 09:09 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Been doing this off and on for 20 years. The way to do this with the most margin also requires the most "hustle". You need to do shows frequently with lots of traffic. The reason for this is well attended shows give you a chance to sell low end price cards in quantity. Your biggest margin is always going to be in the cheap stuff - but there is no way to sell that stuff at that margin online. And if you can't do it in large quantity, it doesn't matter.

You can find guys to sell you there low end stuff in quantity for $0.10 - 0.50 / card. I'm talking stuff that books for $2-10. Sell it at a show for 60% off and everyone is happy.

I don't get to do more than about 10 shows a year, so this doesn't work for me. I deal mostly in mid/high end with some super-high-end stuff. The best way to make money off this kind of stuff is to have people trade you out of your high end. If someone busted a box of something and got a big hit of a player he doesn't collect, but you have a high end of someone they do, they will trade you 3:2 and maybe even 2:1 for the card they really want. This works best on brand new product that may not book yet, but it doesn't have to be. In the case of brand new product, you want to get it listed ASAP b/c 95% of the time, the price will be lower in a month.

Also, don't be afraid to trade down. A lot of guys on these boards won't "trade down" meaning they won't trade an expensive card for a handful of mid-range cards. I have no problem with trading down and normally I can use that stigma to my advantage. If I have a card that ebays for $100 and you want to give me 10 cards that ebay for $20, I'll do that all day long. Sure, it would be more work for me to list them, but I am most likely going to sell them at shows anyway.

One last piece of advice that many dealers either don't understand or refuse to accept. If you have a showcase of nice cards, and you take them to the same show in the same city to the same collectors more than three times, you are wasting time and capital. After three shows in the same location, no matter how nice it is, turn over your inventory, unless you really just don't want to sell it. If it's something you don't mind keeping, that's a separate issue; but if it's stock, you need to turn it over. Personally, I like to sell out completely about once ever 2-3 years just to really purge my inventory.

Just some thoughts. Hope to see you at the show this weekend.
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Old 10-22-2009, 09:15 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ilovenip View Post
The best way I've found to make money off of cards is to not buy them. I always have more money at the end of the month when I don't buy cards and resell them. Just my advice.
I second that man.... thats my strategy too but it hasn't been working lately
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Old 10-22-2009, 09:22 PM   #15 (permalink)
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I've done large shows and small ones as well as having a store. There is one thing that was common with all of these- lower end card sales make the most money. I would suggest having a box of cards that sell for .25 cents each (cards that books $1-$1.75) broken down by teams and star players. Keep those cards just in plastic sleeves. Other cards in top loaders that you sell for .50 cents or a $1 with these cards booking $2-$5. Have some nice higher end cards in a show case to attract customers but don't count on high end sales.

The number one rule! Don't bust wax thinking you will make a profit. You will lose 95% of the time!!!
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Old 10-22-2009, 09:56 PM   #16 (permalink)
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Volume. Buy as many cases as possible and sell them box by box. Just like any large business. By in volume. It costs less and turns the most product. You can't make real money off cards and be a collector too. Don't get high off your own supply.
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Old 10-22-2009, 09:58 PM   #17 (permalink)
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The number one rule! Don't bust wax thinking you will make a profit. You will lose 95% of the time!!!
Not true. Opened 18 different products last year and came out ahead on 15 of them. If you check my current listings it's easy to figure out what sport this is possible in.

I think the only surefire money maker in football is base Topps. I make my money back just selling team sets, everything else is gravy. Market is too saturated to consistently make money opening anything else.
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Old 10-23-2009, 03:26 PM   #18 (permalink)
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In 2009 I have made 21 case purchases of multiple sports. I am currently down $4,500 for the year, and I buy straight from a distributor. This loss includes all EBay and shipping fees. You have to be lucky and sell as soon as the cards come out. However, none of my cases I bought were hockey.

The biggest kick in the pants for me was Allan & Ginter. Lost $1,500 on 6 cases. My best case? Topps Magic football because I pulled 2 Elway auto's and 1 triple Miami Hurricanes auto card. Of the 21 cases I made a profit on 8 cases, but barely a profit. The loses are huge, the profits are minimal. I just like to do it as a hobby. I don't smoke or drink, so I figure that is my addiction cost.

After reading a couple of these posts, I might have to start investing in hockey.
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Old 10-23-2009, 03:36 PM   #19 (permalink)
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I agree with buying larger lots or collections. The only time I ever made any real money was when I got lucky and was able to purchase the leftovers from a closed shop for cheap. Also Craigslist can be a good place. I once but 100 boxes of 87 Topps for $200. Then resold for $8 Each all in the same weekend.
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Old 10-23-2009, 05:02 PM   #20 (permalink)
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Not true. Opened 18 different products last year and came out ahead on 15 of them. If you check my current listings it's easy to figure out what sport this is possible in.

I think the only surefire money maker in football is base Topps. I make my money back just selling team sets, everything else is gravy. Market is too saturated to consistently make money opening anything else.
Shhhhhh.. dont let anyone know that hockey is the sport with the best return
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Old 10-24-2009, 12:03 AM   #21 (permalink)
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Quote:
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I would vote selling singles is the best way to make money if you have the ability to not get attached to your cards. There are reasonable exceptions like vintage and rarities but if you hold when a card is hot you will lose. I do it all the time because I also collect so I usually miss out on the right time to sell because I'm unwilling to compromise my collection. If you can avoid that then singles are the way to make a buck. Unopened also applies since you have to avoid opening which is easier to do if you don't collect and have little attachment to your investment.
My uncle has a pair of '00 Brady Contenders Auto rookies and said he'd part with one for $670.

Would you consider that a good buy & hold?

Anybody remember what that card was selling for on eBay at it's peak?
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