Top 10 Collecting To Dos While Stuck At Home – To say that these are unprecedented times is an understatement. Nervous anxiety, boredom, even depression can be real consequences of mandatory or self-imposed isolation. There are certainly things more important than the hobby. However, now may be the perfect time to remember that this hobby we love can serve as a healthy distraction through this current crisis. With that in mind, here is a look at Top 10 Collecting To Dos While Stuck At Home.
FINISH THAT SET
Base set collecting may not be an activity pursed by all modern-era hobbyists. However, there are still plenty of people out there that still enjoy this traditional hobby activity. So why not take this opportunity of increased free time to collate that pile of base cards, write out your want list and target them on secondary markets.
CLEAN UP THAT DESK
You know who you are. You have piles of cards on your desk. Piles your keeping. Piles you think you might keep. Pile you know you aren’t keeping. Get organized! If not now, when? Online retailers and your LCS (assuming they are open) carry a full line of storage solutions to help get your collection organized.
Decide what cards are going in binders. Do you have enough? Do you need pages? What cards are being displayed in your man cave? Do you need ONETOUCH magnetics? Display stands? What cards are you storing? Do you need 5,000 count boxes? 800 count? Or maybe you just need a bigger desk? Whatever you do, just clean up your desk. Doing so will make you feel that you have accomplished something. It will give you more space to work and make your work area less likely for an accident to happen.
CATALOG YOUR COLLECTION
One of the things many collectors put off (including myself) is taking inventory and recording what’s actually in your collection. Whether you choose to use a custom spreadsheet or to utilize an online tool like those available through Beckett, documenting your collection can have real, tangible benefits.
Not only will knowing what you actually have help avoid making duplicate purchases (like I’ve done), it can also be a valuable financial tool. How? In the event of a catastrophe like fire or flood, replacing a collection for it’s actual value and not simply purchase price can be a daunting challenge without thorough documentation. Which leads to our next collecting activity.
INSURE YOUR COLLECTION
Many people make the assumption that their home owner’s or renter’s insurance will cover a lose due to catastrophe. But do you know for sure? Have you actually read your policy or talked to an agent? Even if you have a supplemental insurance rider, you may not be fully covered. You may also be surprised to find out that most traditional insurance policies only replace items at purchased or current value.
Fortunately there are companies that specialize in insuring collectibles. Maybe it’s time to do some research and get a quote. You’ve made in an investment in time and money. Doesn’t it make sense to protect that investment from the unthinkable?
- Collectibles Insurance Services (CIS)
- American Collectors Insurance
- Finkelmeier Insurance Agency (FIA)
SELL ON EBAY
If time, or lack of it, has been your excuse for not getting your accumulation of non-PC cards listed on eBay, you have time now! Take advantage of this opportunity to get your cards listed. For now, stick to cards that sell for more than $10. Why? Because you realize a more immediate return and it takes, roughly, the same amount of time to list and ship a card selling for $10 as opposed to just a few bucks.
Maximize your time investment. Freeing up some cash to spend at your LCS when this crisis is over will also be a great reward.
CURATE AND DISPLAY
You collect for a reason. You love your team. You love your favorite players. Get their cards out of the boxes in your closet and get them displayed properly. Need some shelving or a display cabinet? As of now, Amazon is still shipping. Remember, to theme your displays. It makes for a nicer presentation. Additionally, displaying your collection makes it an instant conversation piece with friends and family. And really, who doesn’t want to talk about and show off their collection.
Also, don’t forget the blank space on the wall the shelving is attached to. Use that space to display photographs, pennants or other flats that relate to the cards you are displaying. Also, remember that each of these aforementioned items has a storage solution. Check out these new display stands from Ultra PRO that hold ONETOUCH magnetic holders.
APPRECIATE YOUR COLLECTION
It was obviously important to you to acquire the items in your collection. When was the last time you actually took the time to appreciate them? Often times as collectors, we get too caught up in what’s missing or what the next thing we want is that we don’t take the time to appreciate what we actually have accomplished and acquired.
Change that. Pull out a box of cards. Flip through a binder. Or dare I say, read the card backs. *GASP* This is especially true if you are an entertainment collector. Relive your favorite TV shows and movies by reading the card backs as you flip through a binder. Now is a great time to enjoy your collection. You earned it!
LISTEN/WATCH A HOBBY PODCAST/WEB SHOW
Did you know that there are over a dozen podcasts or web series dedicated to #TheHobby? Each brings a unique spin and flavor. There is literally no shortage of topics covered as it relates to collecting sports and entertainment trading cards and memorabilia. Live shows, pre-recorded, on-demand, archived; there are all types of shows to keep you informed and entertained.
Like controversy and addressing issues related to the dark side of the hobby? There’s a podcast for that. Like looking at new and upcoming products with a chance at winning hits from free breaks? There’s a web show for that. Like hearing from collectors about new products? There’s a web show for that too. Even Dr. James Beckett has recently started a quick-hitting, daily podcast LOADED with quality information. And many, many more! Go explore.
READ A HOBBY RELATED BOOK
There are some really excellent books on various aspects of the hobby. Whether its an overview as a whole, history of the hobby or related to specific sets, it seems there has been a book written on the subject. There’s even a new book, called, The Wax Pack, where the author hits the road to meet each of the players pulled from a pack.
Some of my personal favorites are Operation Bullpen, The Card, Mint Condition and The Bubble Gum Card Wars.
For more information about each of these books as well as links to buy them direct, please visit this previously posted article. Top Four Books Every Sports Card Collector Should Read.
WATCH A HOBBY RELATED MOVIE
OK, granted, there are very few of types of these movies in the market. However, if you have never seen either of the films, Diminished Capacity or Jack Of All Trades, you owe it to yourself during this time to give each a watch.
Diminished Capacity stars Alan Alda and Matthew Broderick and is both funny and heart-warming. It also includes one of the most hilarious explanations of the card grading system.
In Jack Of All Trades, film maker, Stu Stone, relives his childhood through cardboard and also reconnects with a long absent father. It is currently streaming on NETFLIX.
SHOP YOUR LCS WEBSITE/ BUY INTO A GROUP BREAK
Ideally, do both of these things. They need your support right now. Some stores are even offering personal box breaks. You can watch the whole thing streamed live in the comfort of your favorite chair.
If you have never participated in a group break, maybe now is the time to try. There are all types of breaks in which to participate and at every conceivable price point. Why not give it a try? Topps put together a simple, easy to understand video.
So, make the most of this time. Get your collection organized. Sell off your accumulations. Read a book. Display and enjoy your collection. We will get through this situation and back to normal . . . eventually.