The Sports Card Collectors Guide to Trading on the
Chapter 1 - Now that’s progress!
Chapter 2 -
- How to trade
- Packing and shipping
- After the trade: the good, the bad and the…gulp…ugly.
- Upgrade and MAKE $MONEY$
- The BIG LIST of “Smart trader tips”
Sports card resources
Chapter 6: Upgrade and
Upgrading your sports card
collection with trading!
Once you have learned the art of
negotiating a good trade, you will find that there are
many people out there who are willing to trade in your
favor in a variety of ways depending on what they might
want in return. You will want to make sure you do not
offend your sports card trading partners by making
unreasonable trade offers, but with time you will get to
know the various traders on the trading board and how
they might be willing to help you in exchange for you
Keep your eye out for these
opportunities! You will meet traders who will be open
1. Taking your common cards and
giving you game-used, autos or rookies in return.
2. Taking your commons for hot star
3. Trading substantially in your
favor in exchange for one card they might need to
complete a set.
Another way for you to upgrade your
collection without spending any additional money is for
you to trade non-sports items for cards. Some folks will
trade other items such as video games, DVD's, CD's, etc.
in exchange for sports cards. You will want to double
check the rules of the trading site that you belong to
before doing this; if it is okay to do, give it a try
and enhance your collection without spending more money!
How to make $MONEY$ by trading
Trading is not only fun and a great way to build up
your sports card collection, but it also allows you the
opportunity to MAKE MONEY! Obviously these money
making opportunities are not for everyone, but if you
are resourceful and hardworking chances are you will be
able to turn your sports card trading skills into a way
to earn some cash. In order to maximize your money
earning potential, I would suggest that you become a
very experienced sports card trader before using any of
these suggestions. Here are some of the ways you can use
sports card trading to turn your cards into cash and
have more money in the bank.
1. Trade for cards that your local
shop owner will then buy from you. These days most card
shops are selective about what cards they are interested
in buying from customers. Find out what cards they do
buy and then trade your unwanted cards for those cards.
2. Set up an arrangement with your
local shop owner to trade the cards that are not selling
well in the shop for ones that will. Explain to them
that trading takes time and that you would be willing to
do this for them in exchange for some store credit or
3. If you are a computer savvy sports
card collector with a lot of trading experience, offer
to teach someone how to trade. See if your local card
shop will let you put a flyer up advertising your
trading tutorial services. You could even hold a small
seminar about how to trade at your local shop; many shop
owners will like this idea because it brings more people
into their stores.
4. Many people either have no
interest or no resources to get a computer and learn all
of this stuff, offer to do it for them in exchange for
cards or charge them a fee.
5. Trade for the cards of your local
sports teams and sell them at a local card show, flea
market, or have a garage sale.
6. Trade away your unwanted cards for
cards to give away as gifts to friends and family
members. It never fails, every holiday season I see a
lot of folks trading for cards to give as gifts! What a
great way to turn your unwanted cards into a gift that
someone will love, this is an excellent example of
saving money with the magic of trading baseball cards,
basketball cards, and other sports cards on the
A sports card price guide reality check
Speaking of all of this money stuff makes me think of
the all important price guides. You are going to have to
have a good handle on using price guides in order to
trade sports cards. The Beckett price guides are the
primary resource people use for look up the values of
their cards. Beckett offers several versions of monthly
and bi-monthly printed guides that you can pick-up at
your local card shop or other magazine outlet. Now that
you are getting comfortable using the Internet I would
recommend you use the online versions of the Beckett
price guides. I have found these online price guides to
be a real time saver since I do not have to flip through
printed pages of tiny price guide text. You will have to
subscribe in order to use these, but I find them well
worth the $3.99 per month.
Another interesting price guide tool starting to emerge
can be seen at
vintagecardprices.com. These subscription-based
guides are a sort of “real world” price index that is
integrated into eBay. These new tools allow you to
search for a card to see what it has actually sold for
on eBay. But you ask “why would I care what the card
sold for on eBay? The answer to that question can
sometimes be a bit of a rude awakening for some
collections, but here is; In the world of buying and
selling sports cards, your cards are only worth what
someone is willing to pay for them.
Occasionally an incredibly popular/hot card will sell
for more than the listed book value. Then again there
are times that a card will sell for about what the price
guides have listed. More often than not however, a card
will sell for far less than the high book value listed
in the guides. For example, a card listed in the regular
Beckett for a high book value for $100 might only
actually sell for $50 (or less). I attribute eBay with
providing a hefty dose of reality to collectors, what
cards are said to be worth verses what a collector can
actually get in cash value are two completely different
things. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but the
faster a collector figures out what his/her cards are
really worth in cash value the better. The longer a
collector is under the impression that he has a
collection worth substantially more cash than what it is
really worth, the bigger the disappointment he’ll
eventually have to face.
This is also why I feel strongly that most collectors
should collect for the fun of it. Collectors should also
collect what they like and not what someone says they
should like based on who or what the latest hot card is.
The average sports card enthusiast should not try to
collect as an investment tool, and when it comes to
investing their hard earned cash, should instead get the
advice of a good financial planner. This is also why
trading sports cards can often be a more rewarding
experience than buying and selling, since most
people trade high book value for high book value. Hence,
when it comes to trading sports cards, the price guides
are incredibly helpful.
Trading sports cards on the Internet is a fun and
rewarding way to add to an already fun hobby. You are
now among the thousands of other collectors who have
figured out what an excellent tool the Internet is for
helping them expand their collections. I hope that you
have learned that although trading on line is ultimately
very easy to do, here is a lot involved to being a great
and efficient Internet sports card trader. Put this
guide to good use and it will provide you with a solid
foundation for earning an excellent reputation as
someone we’d all like to trade with.
Contact me for advice
If you ever want an opinion about a trade situation that
you are involved in you are welcome to contact me. I may
not always be able to give you the answer you are
looking for, or the perfect solution to a trade problem,
but I am willing to give you an answer based on what I
might know about the type of situation you might be
struggling with. Contact me at this email address "help
at sportscardfun dot com".
But wait, the books not done! Be
sure to read Chapter 7 and our resources page.
Chapter - 7 The BIG LIST of “Smart trader tips”