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Sporting collectables - sell high and buy low

Let's take a break from our usual format and discuss the selling and buying of sporting collectibles. My weekly observations regarding the value of items discussed are just that -- observations. You should consider my comments as a type of buffet. Take what you like and ignore the rest. With that mindset let me share some techniques I believe are currently appropriate for you to consider when selling or buying sporting collectibles. I will end with some trends I find interesting.

Sell high and buy low is a commonly used phrase in the stock market. Sound advice and certainly holds true for sporting collectibles. My goal with this week's article is simple -- provide you with information that will reduce the likelihood of getting burnt with transactions you're involved with.

First, accept the fact somewhere along the way you will get "taken for a ride." To reduce the amount of such disheartening experiences consider what I am sharing. I have said this before and I will say it again, knowledge is power. You must educate yourself to insure you get maximum dollars if selling and spend minimum dollars if buying. This knowledge comes from written resources, talking to experts, (I lay no claim to being such an expert) sources like eBay, antique shops, flea markets and the like.

Professional sales people use a technique called, "feature-benefit conversion" when making a sales pitch. It's used because it works. For example, cruise control is a feature in all-new cars. The benefit to you is more comfort in long trips and better gas mileage, which in turn saves you money. Who doesn't like those benefits? Learn how to use the feature-benefit conversion in all your selling transactions. Another technique used by sales people is the "What's In It For Me?" This phrase is often referred to as the "WIFM." The "Me" refers to the buyer. When purchasing a particular item any sales person worth their salt will share many reasons why you need their product. When selling always share with the potential buyer why they need your sporting collectible. It's important to understand your needs and desires are irrelevant when you are the seller.

Sporting collectibles are what is called discretionary spending, meaning dollars spent here are what's left after the mandatory monthly bills are paid. Currently, it's a buyer's market, which should surprise no one. If selling accept the fact your possession is not worth what it was before the current recession. If buying know you're in the drivers seat. If selling know ahead of time what's the least you will take for your item. If buying set a limit on how much you're going to spend on a given purchase. In both cases, stick to the guidelines you set. By doing so, you will always end the day proud of your diligence.

Let's end our discussion with some trends I find interesting regarding the future of hunting and fishing collectibles. I suggest you decide whether each is good or bad. First, have you noticed the small inventories of quality hunting and fishing collectibles in most antique shops? Most people I do business with are "grey haired." I don't recall the last time I bought or sold to a young adult. Take note of the dramatic impact eBay has had on the number of antique shops currently available to consumers. Have you given thought how easy it is to "Google" any sporting collectible that may be of interest to you? What about the trend most written resources are outdated and overstated with their price values due to the current recession? Ponder why some collectors are in this field for financial gain and others for the intangible gain. Finally, why do some collectors call their collections a hobby and others call theirs part of a financial portfolio? Until next time, may all your searches be successful.