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  #1  
Old 07-18-2007, 01:01 PM
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Default To flip or not to flip? That is the question.

Posted By: Dave F

I'm just wondering how many on here will actively "flip" a card that they know that can make a buck on? I'll readily admit I'll buy cards that either I feel I can get a bit more for...or would be solid trade bait for something I'm looking for. I know MANY on here are against doing this...I personally don't see the harm. I am curious though would you admit to this...or are you just a straight collector that doesnt have any intent on reselling? By the way...my main reason for flipping when necessary is because I don't have unlimited funds for cards..and if I didn't do so...would be a short and sweet end to buying pretty fast. All the money no matter how big or small goes straight back into buying more cards....none of it has went to a new bedroom suite or anything like that.

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  #2  
Old 07-18-2007, 01:09 PM
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Default To flip or not to flip? That is the question.

Posted By: davidcycleback

You never know you'll make money upon a flip. There's nothing wrong with flipping cards or memorabilia, and no need to justify it to 'true collectors.' You can use the profits to buy Cheez Wiz and its none of their business.

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  #3  
Old 07-18-2007, 01:11 PM
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Default To flip or not to flip? That is the question.

Posted By: peter chao

When your cards take up an entire room, it is time to seriously start flipping your cards, try to reduce it down to about 200 cards you really want.

If you can't do that reduce it to 1,000 cards you really want. When you purchase or trade for a new card then you get rid of one of the cards from your top 1000.

Once you get into flipping for cards and money, it's a lot of fun.

Peter

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  #4  
Old 07-18-2007, 01:11 PM
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Default To flip or not to flip? That is the question.

Posted By: Dave F

Very true David..you never know..and I've had probably just as many misses. But in order to acquire the cards I want, it has been a necessity. Everything I have in cards was started from $200 that the wife was ok with me using.

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  #5  
Old 07-18-2007, 01:14 PM
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Default To flip or not to flip? That is the question.

Posted By: Dave F

Peter..my definition of flipping isn't downsizing what you have...but more example A. a card on ebay has been going for $500...you put in a snipe at $400...and if you get it you get it..but with the intention of "maybe I'll pull $75-100 off towards other cards I actually want...or maybe I wont"...

But the goal from the start is to not have the card you acquire in your hands very long..

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  #6  
Old 07-18-2007, 01:16 PM
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Default To flip or not to flip? That is the question.

Posted By: leon

I do exactly as you do. If I see what I think is a bargain I will buy it and resell it or use it for trade bait. I wish I could say that I only put as much into my collection as I make on flipping cards but that would be a lie. But I do buy/sell/trade/flip a lot. My question to myself is "If I didn't collect would I still buy and sell?"...I am not sure of that answer. I think there are a lot of folks like us...whether they will admit it or not is another thing. I sort of think most will admit it though.....It's not that big of a deal and I think we can still be very passionate collectors even though we also buy and sell. Funny thing...a lot of the real "full time" dealers I talk to say they used to collect but when they went to full time dealing they couldn't collect anymore...it just wouldn't work for them...good question...regards

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  #7  
Old 07-18-2007, 01:17 PM
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Posted By: Josh

I started flipping cards about a year ago. My collection has grown exponentially as a result. I have been able to afford cards that I regularly wouldn't be able to, if I had to rely on paying for them out of my own pocket.
Plus, it's a great way to learn about different issues, handle a various cards, and meet new and interesting people.
If you know what you are doing, and are patient to wait for a good deal, you can be very successful at this.

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  #8  
Old 07-18-2007, 01:17 PM
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Default To flip or not to flip? That is the question.

Posted By: peter chao

The difficult part is to find dealers or store-owners you can flip with. It's best if it's done with fellow card collectors in person. It's not quite the same over the internet.

Peter

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  #9  
Old 07-18-2007, 01:18 PM
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Default To flip or not to flip? That is the question.

Posted By: Turner Engle

I flip from time to time. Other times I break even just to generate some quick cash. If I couldn't flip, I would not be able to keep up with buying some cards for my personal collection.

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  #10  
Old 07-18-2007, 01:19 PM
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Posted By: davidcycleback

I consider buying a large group lot and breaking it up to be a service to collectors. Most collectors don't want to the whole lot, especially dupes and extras the don't desire. They just want and can afford one or a few pieces. Some want the card of their favorite player or team. If the seller makes a profit and the collectors get the individual cards the want, it works to the benefit to all. The seller is being paid to perform a useful service for collectors on limited budgets.

An example is I once bought a lot of 1,000 football photos. I personally know of no one other than me who would want to buy 1,000 football photos. As a whole, the lot is unsellable. However, it's very easy to find individuals looking for one or two photos of Notre Dame, Michigan, Dick Butkus, Miami Dolphins, etc. And, eventually, you're down to your last photo.

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  #11  
Old 07-18-2007, 01:21 PM
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Posted By: Dave F

Peter..the problem is "most" dealers aren't going to pay top dollar for a card...their whole purpose is basically the same...buy it cheap and sell it for more. So I would think you'd have a hard time flipping cards to dealers that you find for bargains.

One example of my latest...Leon had that Mcgraw PSA 2 Lenox back for quite a while...and for quite a while I'd mention off and on that I was interested in the card..but in no way was my wife going to allow me to cut Leon a check for that amount...so, I bought a D381 (which I had no intentions of ever keeping)...and was able to use that in the deal with Leon.

Had I just used the initial $200 my wife let me have I think I'd be sittin on a T206 horizontal in a PSA 5...for a long time.

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  #12  
Old 07-18-2007, 01:28 PM
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Default To flip or not to flip? That is the question.

Posted By: peter chao

Dave,

You should not expect the store-owner or dealer to give you top dollar. Trade cards that you no longer want and the store-owner or dealer needs for his business. It's the old adage, "one hand washes the other." Also, it works better when you throw in some cash.

Peter

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  #13  
Old 07-18-2007, 01:30 PM
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Posted By: Dave S

Guess I'm a lucky soul..
I've bought and sold hundred$$ and hundred$$ of cards and never once had to explain a single transaction to the wife...she could care less...a real Saint!!

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  #14  
Old 07-18-2007, 01:32 PM
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Posted By: peter chao

Dave,

You are indeed a lucky soul, I purchase cards on Saturdays and then immediately start thinking about how I can hide them from my wife.

Peter

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  #15  
Old 07-18-2007, 01:35 PM
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Default To flip or not to flip? That is the question.

Posted By: Dave F

Peter,
I do get the...."you got this in the mail today, what is it worth?"...or "your selling that? what is it worth?" but since nothing has changed with the checking or savings accounts...she pretty much leaves me be at this point. I'm sure she'd be a little surprised at what is in my paypal though

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  #16  
Old 07-18-2007, 01:36 PM
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Posted By: anthony

although my final collection will be small (12-15) cards, i'm trying to flip to pay completely for my final collection...i dont mind holding them a little longer since they are cool to look at and say you owned one before.

at this point my collection is about 85% paid for, thats the mayo anson, zeenut weaver, e90-1 young, etc...the last one that will give me trouble will be the cracker jack joe jackson...i'll either pay through the nose or be "flipping" a while longer...

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  #17  
Old 07-18-2007, 01:40 PM
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Posted By: peter chao

Anthony,

Do you work it the way David C. does? Are you buying lots of 4-5 cards or larger and then selling off the cards you don't need?

Peter

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  #18  
Old 07-18-2007, 01:45 PM
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Posted By: davidcycleback

All collectors, even those pesky true collectors, should sell with some regularity. Selling with some regularity gives one an first hand idea of what items are really worth (meaning, what they sell for YOU, not what they sell for Mastro or Lealand) and the practical logistics of selling (time to find a buyer, packing, costs you never thought of, etc). It is a mistake to buy buy buy and never sell anything, as the buy buy buyer often discovers his head was in the clouds when buying. Selling takes your head of the clouds and shows you what YOUR items sell for-- a good thing if you're an active buyer.

Do you know who makes money selling cards and memorabilia? The person who accurately predicts what he will sell things for. And do you know who knows what things sell for? The person who sells.

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  #19  
Old 07-18-2007, 01:50 PM
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Posted By: peter chao

David C., it's true. You need to sell in person or through the internet to find out the true market value of your own collection.

Peter

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  #20  
Old 07-18-2007, 01:56 PM
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Posted By: MVSNYC

first of all, nobody has the right to judge anyone else...

so as for the subject of "to flip or not to flip?" to each his own. and no one should need to defend their actions...i am a collector thru & thru, BUT, where i can make some money, i take advantage of that. if someone sees a great deal, and realizes that they can "flip" this card and make some money...more power to 'em.

for years, i would NEVER sell ANYTHING, just buy, buy, buy...then i started streamlining, and sold a bunch of things, kept important pieces, and then took the money i made from selling items and put it into other areas of my collection. if you can make some money, or great trades, go for it!

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  #21  
Old 07-18-2007, 01:56 PM
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Posted By: Jim Dale

I almost never sell a card; so I never lose anything on them that way and buy just what I can afford. If I had to live off flipping I'd be out of collecting in no time. Now I have "liquidated" some cards before and fortunately for me - did all right doing so.

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  #22  
Old 07-18-2007, 02:00 PM
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Posted By: peter chao

Jim,

We're not talking about making a living from flipping...we are talking about raising funds to feed the habit. Besides, when you liiquidated, didn't you put some of that money back into your collection? It's a form of flipping.

Peter

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  #23  
Old 07-18-2007, 02:05 PM
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Posted By: Joe D.

If I see a card that is going too cheaply... I will buy the deal even if I am not interested in the card.

I say - "I can't let it go for less than x"... and then I put a snipe in.


Its always good to have trade material.

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  #24  
Old 07-18-2007, 02:07 PM
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Posted By: davidcycleback

Peter, that's where you're wrong. We're talking about flipping for cold hard cash to buy luxury SUVs, diamonds for the mistress and another white ocelot for the menagerie.

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  #25  
Old 07-18-2007, 02:10 PM
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Posted By: peter chao

Flipping works well if you still go to card shows often. Some of the dealers are week-end warriors and they just want to make a little extra money. If a deal sounds fair, they will go for it.

Peter

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  #26  
Old 07-18-2007, 02:13 PM
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Posted By: Mike

Never. I only buy what i know will remain in my collection. I have sold maybe 8 cards in 16 years. Once I buy them, they stay in the house. The few I have sold, were sold because my focus changed. I had no more interest in Colgans, or 206's, or other oddballs from the teens and 20's. I also sold my 51 mantle, to pay some taxes and take my wife to Hawaii. Other than than that, I never flip...They're here to stay. One more thing, I also have sold a few in order to upgrade a particular card. Not many though. I usually don't buy until I find exactly what I am looking for.

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  #27  
Old 07-18-2007, 02:14 PM
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Posted By: Steve f

If you're blue collar collector like myself, then you really have no choice but to flip. My current collection was purchased via flipping and selling off old 60s stuff. I couldn't do it any other way.

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  #28  
Old 07-18-2007, 02:17 PM
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Posted By: peter chao

Steve,

Flipping is just a more advanced version of trading. It's probably before your time, but I can still remember swapping cards with friends. Now, I do the same thing but some cash is thrown in.

Peter

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  #29  
Old 07-18-2007, 02:18 PM
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Posted By: Denny Walsh

Dave & All,
As I see it, This is no different than flipping cards when I was 10 years Old. If you want to look for a difference, it's done mostly in the Cyber world rather than at the Sandlot I grew up on
I am still learning after many years of doing this. I want to remain honest in all that I do... I will always let my intentions be know, so there is no unfortunate inconvenience's afterward. I especially don't like reselling cards that I know the person I got them from was very attached to.... Then when they find out that I just turned around to make a profit........ Whhaattt!? That is why I am upfront and personal as much as can be! I type collect! So Therefore ~ myself, You & alot of other People, are talking the same language when it comes to the word very few people like to hear, "BUDGET". Buying a $5,000 for $4,000 and waiting for the right time to sell it to make a profit, makes me an American, not a weasel! So I say, "Buy/Sell/Trade/Flip with the best of'em! Welcome aboard Mate, You are now Freee to Roam about the Earth to further Your Collecting adventures"

Life Is So Grand,
Denny Walsh

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  #30  
Old 07-18-2007, 02:24 PM
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Posted By: Steve f

Yea Peter, I'm just a young newbie learnin the ropes. Thanks for the trip down Memory Lane

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  #31  
Old 07-18-2007, 02:27 PM
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Posted By: Joe Drouillard

I flip cards all of the time. Like Dave I started out with a couple of hundred bucks and have turned it into a nice little vintage collection buying and selling on eBay.

The downside to flipping is that when I buy a card I'm mainly concerned with what the card will sell for. I don't know how many times that I've passed on a gem I really wanted because I didn't think it was worth the price. The mindset becomes "value" not the "beauty" of the artifact itself.

On the flip side, if I didn't flip I wouldn't have a collection.

Best wishes,

Joe

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  #32  
Old 07-18-2007, 02:34 PM
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Posted By: peter chao

The solution is to have two shoeboxes. The first shoebox is for cards you collect, the second box is for cards you will flip.

If you try this you can be both a collector and a seller.

Peter

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  #33  
Old 07-18-2007, 02:38 PM
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Posted By: Dave F

Peter..I'll put it this way..currently I have all of three cards in my collection that are keepers...UNLESS I found upgrades at decent prices, and then these three cards as well will become flip material.

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  #34  
Old 07-18-2007, 02:42 PM
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Posted By: peter chao

Dave F.,

It sounds like your making progress. As suggested above, once in a while you need to purchase a card that you simply know is a good deal, then you will have more trade bait.

Peter

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  #35  
Old 07-18-2007, 02:52 PM
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Posted By: JK

"Flipping is just a more advanced version of trading. It's probably before your time, but I can still remember swapping cards with friends. Now, I do the same thing but some cash is thrown in. "

Peter, while some flips are essentially trades, I believe what most people are talking about here is purchasing cards with the express intent to sell them later and using the profits, if any, to fund their personal collection or other purchases.

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  #36  
Old 07-18-2007, 02:59 PM
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Posted By: peter chao

JK,

I do that also. However, I do most of my flipping with dealers, store-owners, and friends. It's more difficult to establish a relationship over the internet.

Peter

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  #37  
Old 07-18-2007, 03:28 PM
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Posted By: JK

I guess that is where we differ - Im not looking to establish a relationship with someone who I flip a card to. Personally, I think "flipping" to store owners and dealers is not a good idea if you are looking to maximize what you can get for the card.

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  #38  
Old 07-18-2007, 03:40 PM
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Posted By: Mark L

When I find a set that I like and that seems relatively inexpensive, I try to buy a little more than I need so that I'll have some duplicates to sell if and when that set ever catches on. If I guess correctly, it's gratifying on a couple of levels.

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  #39  
Old 07-18-2007, 03:54 PM
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Posted By: peter chao

JK,

You might be missing out a bit if you don't establish the relationships. The dealer may be willing to give you more of a discount if you have been doing business for a while.

Peter

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  #40  
Old 07-18-2007, 04:01 PM
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Posted By: Jim Dale

Peter when I liquidated a large group of cards I had accumulated in a short period of time (3 years) the money did go back into cards of other kinds. Though I did take some off and fund my ROTH for the year and the following year. It allowed me to pursue new things that I enjoyed more.

I like it when people flip - keeps the market fluid and things I want available. Nothing worse then a stale market place with nothing available. God Bless the flippers - I have always felt that way. I'm just pretty lousy at it and avoid doing so myself.

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  #41  
Old 07-18-2007, 04:02 PM
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Posted By: Dave F

Peter,
I think the problem is a dealer that is willing to give you a "discount" based on working up a relationship isn't going to stay in business too long.

If you have a card that has been going at auctions for $500...why would a dealer give you anything over $400 for it? What good would it do for him to give you trade valued at $500...he can't turn the card for a profit at that point...and isn't that what he is solely in the business to do?

I think your better off finding a collector willing to pay the $500 for it straight up...or even better..hope there is a collector that needs a certain card bad enough that you luck out getting $600 for it.

If you've just been working trades and buying from dealers...your overpaying and underselling.

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  #42  
Old 07-18-2007, 04:08 PM
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Posted By: peter chao

Dave F.,

You are right the best way to flip is to find a collector. However, that takes more time than you realize sometimes. If relationships have been already established with a store-owner, you pretty much know what his store needs and the cards (and sometimes cash) you can get in exchange.

Peter

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  #43  
Old 07-18-2007, 04:36 PM
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Posted By: JK

Peter,

Again, I have to disagree. Selling a card on ebay takes 15 minutes to list. To list a card on b/s/t, about a minute. Then, once listed, the buyer finds me (hopefully and more often than not). Trading with hobby friends and dealers is fine for purposes of obtaining specific cards that I may be looking for, but its not a good method to actually make gains in my collection (since you are typically trading for equal value). You have your way and enjoy it and that is a good thing - but I will still stick with my way.

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  #44  
Old 07-18-2007, 04:42 PM
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Posted By: peter chao

JK,

I seldom go in a store just to get money from a trade. It's normally because I see a T206 or Goudey that I really need, so I "kill two birds with one stone."

Peter

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  #45  
Old 07-18-2007, 04:45 PM
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Posted By: JK

That is understandable Peter, however, the original question posed by this thread deals with flipping cards to earn money for additional purchases.

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  #46  
Old 07-18-2007, 04:51 PM
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Posted By: peter chao

Sometimes (admittedly rare) this even happens, I'll trade a 2007 Topps Derek Jeter error card for a card and cash, it couldn't have worked out better.

Peter

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  #47  
Old 07-19-2007, 11:37 PM
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Posted By: peter chao

At least this thread is card related...a friendly bump.

Peter

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  #48  
Old 07-20-2007, 12:11 AM
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Posted By: Cat

Getting a flipper reputation is a double edged sword. We all move cards because we change focus or buy lots and keep what we need and sell what we don't. I have three or four collector colleagues that I often make deals with and cards get moved quickly at times, but it is all in the spirit of perfecting a collection. That's normal.

I have different beliefs based on what kind of cards we are talking about. If it is a $100 card and someone tries to flip it to make $20, well so be it. It seems like a tough way to make cash for collecting. But, for the semi-rare (and higher dollar) stuff, I will try to avoid moving it to a "high volume flipper." If I know someone needs a card for their collection, I'll contact them directly first. If that same person just happened to have a "high volume flipper" reputation, I'd never contact them directly. If that "high volume flipper" also makes an effort on one of my cards in the BST, they will never get a discount. Why give a discount if they are going to add 20% and try to sell?

I had some very desirable dups that I sold in the BST, which the person immediately flipped after he negotiated a lower price. That's fine, but I did let him know to never bother reponding to one of my posts again. I have some very desirable dups right now which someone may want for their collection and I may consider moving them (probably some years from now...I am going to take a looonng break after the National), but if someone contacted me and wanted to talk about those cards, I wouldn't consider it if they have the "high volume flipper" reputation. I believe people can do what they want with the card after they own it, but I also believe the seller has the right to pick who they make private trades and/or sells. Of course, it is a different story with auctions.

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Old 07-20-2007, 12:44 AM
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Default To flip or not to flip? That is the question.

Posted By: peter chao

Cat,

It sounds like you are an experienced flipper and have established reasonable guidelines. I take a similar approach but the number of cards I flip are modest. Only a few of my transactions are over the internet, I still prefer the old-fashioned direct contact.

Peter

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Old 07-20-2007, 12:48 AM
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Default To flip or not to flip? That is the question.

Posted By: davidcycleback

As a seller, you don't want bidders or buyers to know where the item came from, unless provenance is important for showing authenticity. If you're flipping and everyone knows where your stuff came from and how much it cost you, you aren't doing it right.

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