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Reasons Why Investing in Sports Cards Is on the Rise

Reasons Why Investing in Sports Cards Is on the Rise

Everyone had sports cards growing up. Trading cards were an everyday activity at school and with friends. As a kid, it was a fun hobby. Now, the sports card industry is a multi-million dollar industry. It might be time to dig out the old cards.

Investing in sports cards sounds like an incredible idea on paper. However, most cards aren't worth much. But if you come across the right card, you could be entitled to a large sum. Sports card investing is a fun and great alternative to traditional investing. 

Why You Should Consider Investing in Sports Cards

There are several benefits of collecting sports cards. Making money off the lucrative trade is only one reason to get involved. There are several other reasons to join the movement and make money.

Make Money

If you know what you're doing, you can make a lot of money quickly. Time and time again there are stories of people who started their collection at a young age. After realizing the value in their cards, they then sell their cards for an incredible profit. It might be time to check your collection for a rookie Cal Ripken Jr. card!

If you purchase a player's rookie card and hold on to it throughout their career, you can obtain large sums of money. A great example of this is Mike Trout. When he was a rookie, you could've stumbled across his card for less than $10. Keeping that card in perfect condition would have given you just shy of $4 million.

To make a lot of money on a card, it must be rare and in great condition. Ensuring a card is in mint condition is crucial to the price of the card. 

Sports Geek

A majority of people who collect and invest in sports cards love sports. Without a passion for sports, you may burnout out of the business. Collecting sports cards allows you to follow your favorite player, team, or league.

Loving all sports can help you curate a nice collection. The collection will allow you to brag to friends and family as well as make money if you choose to. Having a sports card collection while loving the game can help you better understand the history of sports.

Social Groups and Interactions

Sports card investing is a growing community of people. If you buy sports cards you will be able to meet people with similar interests. Going to large events will allow you to be a part of the larger sports card community.

By attending large events, you can trade cards, sell sports cards, or get to make new connections. A great part of the convention is to obtain contact information with buyers and sellers alike. 

Investing in Sports Cards

The lucrative industry is set to only get larger from where it is today. Investor Gary Vaynerchuk (known as Gary Vee) had this to say about investing in sports cards.

“In the short term, an investment opportunity might look like buying cards for say, $40 each and flipping them for $80 a few months later. In the long term, I think the best investments will be icons. These are the ones that will see growth over time. Too many people will take this next 2-3 year period and invest in young stars who, in 7 to 15 years won’t matter culturally. They’d be better off selling those cards in 24 months instead of holding them for a decade.”

It is predicted that the sports trading card market will be worth $98.75 billion by 2027. The global sports trading card market has seen a recent spike and will continue to grow from here. The market was valued at $13.82 billion in 2019. Meaning there will be a growth of 23.01% from 2020 to 2027. 

Why Are Sports Cards So Popular to Invest in?

Covid-19 brought a lot of industries to a halt for a long time. With everyone being home and not knowing what to do, the sports card market was able to boom. This has fueled the market to grow even more and will continue to grow.

The pandemic drew in a crowd who have stuck around to this day. The buying and selling platform of eBay saw a 142% rise in trading card sales from 2019 to 2020. This equates to 4-million more cards being sold than in 2019.

Outside of the pandemic, the sports card market grew because of three reasons

  1. Traditional investors saw an opportunity for a new market that was growing at a rapid rate
  2. Collectors who were new to the idea wanted to give it their best shot and
  3. People wanted to pick up a new hobby and ended up sticking with it for a long time

Soccer and basketball were the two sports with cards that grew in popularity. In 2020, soccer grew 1586% compared to 2019 and basketball grew 373% over the same time frame. This allows for cards to be easily bought and easily sold.

Best Cards to Invest in

The more promising the future is, the more likely you are to make money. Investing in sports cards is similar to classic investing in this way. Certain cards have better futures than others.

However, finding the cards that have the best futures is often very risky. As each rookie funnels into their respective leagues, their cards are released to the general public. Buying a rookie card is the best bet for a long-term successful investment, but there are negatives to this plan too. 

If you buy a rookie card of an athlete who is deemed "the next best player" and they underperform, your investment is worthless. Younger stars can get injured, have bad seasons, or never win a championship. All of these aspects will lower the price of the card.

Many seasoned sports card investors will look into vintage cards. By obtaining cards of legends, you don't risk the athlete being a flop or a bust. The legend and memory of a great player will keep the card worth a lot of money. These cards can even appreciate over time. 

An example of this is the Mickey Mantle 1952 Topps card. The card sold for $282,000 in 2006 and a few short years later the value skyrocketed. The same card was sold in 2018 for $2.88 million at an auction.

How Do Cards Go Up in Value?

There are several ways in which a card can go up in value. Different sports can have different trends, however, it is generally the same events that can make a card go up in value.

The standard events include becoming a popular athlete or star, becoming a league MVP, breaking league records, receiving accolades and awards, winning the league championship, having an early retirement due to unfortunate causes, being inducted into the hall of fame, and having a cultural impact.

Athletes who possess one or several of the events listed above will have cards that are worth a fortune. 

Investing Trends

The sports card investing industry and the sports betting industry reach the same audience. If one market does well so does the other and if one market does poorly, so does the other. The good news is that the sports betting industry has quickly become one of the largest markets in the United States.

Society and culture play a large role in the fluctuation of card prices. When an athlete does something remarkable, their card prices normally skyrocket. 

A perfect example of this is Michael Jordan and The Last Dance. Before the hit docu-series was released, MJ cards were popular. After the Netflix original was aired, cards became a massive hit. Some Jordan cards even quadrupled in price after the series was released.

The same can be said for Magic Johnson and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. The two Lakers icons are in a show that is airing on AppleTV+. The sports card investment industry will react to those two legends cards the same way they did for Jordan's.

Your Guide to Investing in Sports Cards

After reading everything in the article so far, you are interested in investing in sports cards. This next section will give you a brief guide on what you need to do to take the next steps. There is no right or wrong way to invest in sports cards (as long as you aren't losing money).

Create a Budget

It is easy to get carried away in the world of investing. Especially if you are investing in an industry and market that is your passion. This can make it very easy to overspend. Establishing a budget can help prevent getting carried away.

A good rule of thumb is to start small and get bigger. With your first investment, you will want to make a small risk on an investment. Based on the success of that investment, you can either do the same risk or make a larger one given your success. 

Once you gain more and more experience, you can gradually put more money into sports card investments.

Long Term or Short Term

You need to decide if you want to be a long-term investor or a short-term investor. 

Short-term investing is simple. You buy a rookie card at the beginning of the season and after their first year, you sell the card. This can be especially beneficial if the athletes card you invest in wins awards towards the end of the season. 

Long-term investing is also simple. Instead of buying a rookie card and selling it at the end of their first season, you hold onto the card for longer. Holding onto the card for longer can generate a higher risk but can also generate a higher reward.

With long-term investing, you can sell the card after the athlete has a few good seasons. For a super long-term investment, you can hold onto the card until the athlete wins championships and makes it to the hall of fame.

Research, Research, Research

If you couldn't tell, research is important. You don't want to buy a player's worthless card. The best way to see if a card is worth something is to simply watch sports on any given night and see who the best player is in the game. 

There are also several helpful websites that you can check to see if certain athletes' cards are worth it. You can also research if certain boxes are worth buying as well. 

The more informed you are about athletes, the better your investments will be. Stay up to date on sports card investment trends to have a good understanding of what you can expect.

Stay Up to Date on Card Values

You will need to keep an eye out for certain trends and values. Certain websites can help you understand and see what cards are trending up and which are trending down.

Make Your First Investment

Once you have read through this list, it is time to make your first purchase. You can buy a single card or you can buy a box of cards as mentioned above. There are many options for you to purchase. 

Popular places to find your first investment include eBay, PWCC, online retailers, local shops, garage sales, and even The National Sports Collectors Convention held each year.

Once you make your first investment you will want to monitor values, watch the athlete, and protect your investment. If you're lucky, the investment will payout in the future.

Invest in Sports Cards Today

Investing in sports cards is a way for anyone to make money, start a new hobby, and enjoy sports. You can have a great time and meet new people while immersing yourself in this new world.

Contact us today if you have sports card investing questions or if you are ready to make your first investment.

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