How to Collect Sports Memorabilia

Collecting sports memorabilia is a popular hobby amongst sports enthusiasts all over the world. It is also a massive commercial industry and is growing every year. A passion for sport can turn into a large collection of signed pieces, and in some cases this collection can have great financial value. For others, the value is merely sentimental. Whatever, the reason for collecting sports memorabilia, there is no doubt that it is a very popular hobby.

Sports memorabilia covers a lot of different pieces, and the prices can range from pence to thousands of pounds. Photos, cards, shirts and other sports related equipment that have been signed by an athlete are considered memorabilia, but only when the signature has been certified by a reputable company. Adding an autograph to an article can either decrease of increase its value. For example, if the autograph has been personalised to a specific name then the autograph will devalue the item on the public market. The price of an item will also be very low if the item is sold without a certificate of authenticity. Replica and authentic sports products that are unsigned, or are signed but not authenticated, are considered collectibles.

If you decide to become a collector of sports memorabilia, you must first establish a strategy. Firstly, you will need to decide whether you are going to become a collector as a hobby or if you want to collect in order to make a profit. If you decide on the latter, you need to consider to likelihood that you will become attached to the items, and in the event that this happens how likely it is that you will be able to part with your things. If you think that you may get too attached to your collection then it may be wise to collect merely for pleasure rather than as a money-making scheme. If you think that you will be able to give up your treasures in order to make a profit you need to give yourself limits on how much you are willing to spend.

Next you should decide on a theme for your collection. It may be that you are interested in one type of sport or a certain period of sporting history. However, you should try to narrow your search to include maybe only one team, one athlete, the Olympics, or one sport. This will enable you to become more educated about one area and with time you will be able to spot interesting and rare pieces that will be popular with buyers.

Now that you have established the theme of your collection you will also be able to determine its value. For example, if your collection focuses solely on one player then it may be difficult to sell, but a collection that is dedicated to a certain piece of sporting history may appeal to a wider range of buyers.

In order to keep track of the growth of your collection, it might be helpful to make a wish list of items that you want the most. If you stick to the list this will ensure that you do not panic buy items that may turn out to be bad buys. A wish list will also help you to establish a budget and stick to it.

In order to make your collection as good as possible, it is helpful to educate yourself about the sports memorabilia market. You should make yourself aware of market prices, factors that make prices fluctuate and decrease and the general history behind your collection. This means that you are less likely to be ripped off when buying pieces and you will be able to choose pieces wisely. You should also keep up to date with the sports memorabilia market in general to see what is selling well and what isn’t.

Being a collector of sports memorabilia takes a lot of time and effort. You should expect to have to take the time to shop online, scour newspaper adverts for auctions and deal directly with a specialised sports memorabilia broker and even attend collectible shows. Another way is to go to the direct source, for example attending games or training sessions to get the players to sign memorabilia. If you have a genuine interest in your collection then these things will not seem like hard work to you, but if they do then maybe you should reconsider becoming a collector.