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Are Your Collectables Valuable?

Are Your Collectables Valuable?

Collectables are, for those who are unaware, simply any item of value that someone is taking the time to collect.  Unlike antiques, which may be defined by the period they come from, collectables can be of any age, but for a broad definition, collectables are usually more modern, coming from the age of mass production, after the 1920s, and of course also have the kitsch or cute factor.  Of course some collectables are more popular than others, and some collections are in and out of vogue over time making value relative for some types of item.  There are people collecting a huge variety of objects that go as far sweet wrappers or biscuit tins, so the opportunity is endless.  All collectors start somewhere, and I daresay our grandmothers had no idea that so many of their every day household items would be so sought after now, so perhaps these collections are not as unusual as they sound.  The reason that many items are so collectable is their durability.  Paper items for example, like those oh so collectable comic books are very perishable.  Where modern collectors keep their prize specimens in special poly bags, the children whoa actually bought such items probably read them once and tucked them away or disposed of them so, so where many have been printed, there are few surviving today.  The same goes for the now legendary millennium Falcon of Star Wars fame.  How many kids received theirs as Christmas gift, thanked their parents and placed it still neatly packaged on a shelf? Not many I daresay, meaning again that this iconic toy has gained cult status in the popular myth of collectable values.
That said, there is simply the collection of sea shells you picked up as a child, or the furry animals your children collect, but these clearly are not of the same desirability and therefore value as sought after, hard to find items in monetary terms.  Modern limited edition collectibles probably also apply here although if made in sufficiently limited amounts are clearly ‘collectable’ to those who buy them.  Despite this, the fad collectables tend not to hold their value as so many modern fads can go out of fashion as quickly as they arrive, so do be aware when investing.  Instead what helps to keep value is condition and rarity, as well as obviously demand.  Some items are collectable for their ‘cute’ factor, some for their political fascination, but what matters is how many other people find it interesting of course.  The rarer the stamp or postcard, the more likely there is to be a buyer, and so the value increases.
There is also a lot to be said for the nature of the collector…those who like to have every single piece in a set, or find such excitement in every new piece that the value is going to be inflated.  Whatever your interest (or obsession…), the advice remains the same as for any other item of value – collect something you like, which will suit your home or suits your personality rather than simply something which you think is for investment purposes, so that if the value fluctuates or dips, you still have a collection to be proud of.
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