Vintage Shopper

The Best Collectibles For Investment

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We all have hobbies. Some adventurous hobbyists spend their days travelling the world and climbing the highest peaks, whilst more conservative hobbyists prefer to remain in the comfort of their local High Street, browsing the shelves for collectible and limited editions items.

The good news for collectible enthusiasts is that their exclusive collections – whether that collection be dolls, stamps, coins or otherwise – can actually be an investment in disguise, and something that could provide a substantial financial windfall for their families in the future.

So if you are an avid collector, or are just keen to get started in the collectibles world, what are the best collectibles for investment, and why?

 

stamps - the best collectibles for investment

Photo by tonyhall on flickr.com

Stamps

Philately, or stamp collecting, is perhaps one of the most stereotypical hobbies. It is one that is most frequently mentioned in fictional tales on the silver screen, and is usually listed in the character reference of a story’s ‘boring’ character. Whilst a seemingly dull hobby to participate in, dedicated collectors can bring profits of £100 to £100,000 for a book of just six rare stamps, and are definitely one of best collectibles for investment.

For example, avid stamp collector and retired schoolmaster Frank Deakin had devoted most of his spare time to collecting stamps with origins in Barbados. In 2009, Frank decided to sell his collection at auction, and made a hefty £300,000 out of the items that he had previously collected for pleasure.

Whilst stamps are attractive items to collect and look at, they also offer a look at the world from an alternative light. Collectors get to explore global stamp designs and postmarks used in each country around the world, whilst some also enjoy the challenge of finding rare and limited edition stamps from overseas.

Stamp values are determined on a number of factors such as: how many are available on the philatelic market; global demand both in and out of the stamp’s country of origin; the condition of the stamp (i.e. damaged vs. mint); thematic appeal; and a stamp’s relation to current events (i.e. London 2012 or the birth of the Royal Baby). Some consideration is also given to the projections for the future value of a particular stamp, and also the place of purchase; two factors which make the philatelic world a difficult one to crack for the novice collector.

Books

Books are another excellent investment, as they not only bring in a tasty return when the time comes to sell, but they also provide immense joy whilst they are in a collector’s possession.

They first key step in getting started in book collecting is to buy what you love – build a collection that is of interest to you rather than one where you only buy every first or limited edition copy of a book that you can lay your hands on. At the end of the day, you are spending your money on a hobby, so you might as well spend it on something that you will enjoy whilst you own it.

The next key in book collecting is to buy the best copy you can afford. Much like stamps, books in mint condition or close to it will sell for much more than a used and battered one with a broken spine. Rare or limited editions will also boost your profits, so keep an eye out for these where they are available.

Vinyl

Vinyl is a music format has really made a comeback in recent years, with many striving to hear the authentic vinyl tone that only those records produce.

Not only are vinyl records authentic in their sound, they are also authentic in their artwork. With records typically reaching sizes of 12-inches, there was plenty of space on the sleeve for artists to create some truly unique artwork. Some collectors are so in love with record artwork that they display their collections in specialist record frames. The quality and rarity of the artworks are considered big factors in the valuation of records. For example limited edition sleeves, such as the silk-padded sleeve edition of The Rolling Stones’ album Their Satanic Majesties Request, are thought to be worth around £2,000.

As with any collectible, buy what you love. If you were a fan of the 70s glam rock era search around for some Bowie or T-Rex; if you were a child of the 60s go for something that emanates flower power. Look for records without scratches on the vinyl itself and ones that still play as well as they did when they came off the vinyl press.

Franchise Memorabilia

Whether you’re an obsessed Whovian, a Marvel maniac, or a wannabe Bond girl, all franchises have uncommon merchandise just waiting to be snapped up by collectors. Most merch fans will build their collections with anything they can get their hands on, such as sweet wrappers or a fast food kids meal toy that include a particular character. Others however buy with profit in mind, splurging on hard-to-find items and first editions of a product.

Many collectors in this area will turn to dedicated fan pages as an outlet to buy or trade merchandise with other franchise fans. Charity auctions are also a great place to invest in one-off items, such as an actor-signed prop, lithograph or DVD.

Coins

Coin collecting is another ideological type of hobby. The beauty of coin collecting is that the items you gather actually carry some monetary value, meaning that buying and selling values are often effected by the actual value of the coin – great if you’re looking to turn your hobby into an investment.

If you decide to partake in coin collecting as a hobby, be wary of fake coins that frequently surface on the Internet. Look for reputable coin sellers and take advice from other collectors on forums; you’ll likely get a better return if you do so.

Research is key in being successful at coin collecting. With the value of coins constantly fluctuating, there are a lot of risks to be taken as to the time in which you buy coins and the time in which you sell. It is very much a game a chance in the coin business, something that makes it a difficult yet exciting hobby to take up.

This is just a small handful of the many types of collectibles you could acquire and turn into an investment. The key to being successful in your new venture is to do your research and buy what you love. Enjoy, and good luck!

Vicky is a writer alongside DGC who specialise in alternative investments. She is a keen collector who has safely stored a range of limited edition dolls from her childhood for the future.

November 6, 2013 |

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