The Summer 2022 Trading Card Buyer’s Guide

This is the time of year when the hobby hits a lull…but that doesn’t mean you have to. Here’s what to look out for before NFL season begins and things ramp back up.

So, your collection of Ja Morant Base Prizm PSA 10s have cratered in value and you’re wondering if they will ever recover. The short answer is “probably not,” but there are plenty of other options that investors and collectors can take advantage of this summer.

Trading cards have taken a dip this year, but what hasn’t in this economy? Anyway, we are still seeing value increases with certain cards. Boardroom is here to provide tips on how to navigate this brutal summer and keep your portfolio and collection from taking further hits.

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Stay Away From Base Cards

Boardroom made mention of this in the NFL Offseason Buyer’s Guide. Production of popular sets such as Prizm and Topps Chrome have skyrocketed over the past couple of years. 2020 was an anomaly in that you could have gotten a base Ja Morant, sent it to PSA, had it grade a 10, and sold it for over $500. For new hobbyists, especially kids, base cards are a great way to build the hobby, but will lack the long-term value. Seasoned hobby veterans should focus on #’d and short print parallels of rookies.

Stick with the Stars

via Card Ladder

Unless you’re looking at a prospect with LeBron James-like potential, it’s better to not fall for the hype of rookies and wait for a better opportunity to buy.

The legends will always hold value and now is the time to buy in. Tyrese Maxey’s National Treasures “True” RPA /99 PSA 10 sold for a little over $9,000 at the end of June. Curry’s Topps Base Rookie PSA 10 is on the decline, even after winning his fourth NBA championship, and it recently sold for $7,500. While the Maxey RPA is a cooler looking card, it involves a lot more risk than getting a Curry rookie on the decline. Curry is a first-ballot Hall of Famer, and while Maxey is young and talented, there’s no telling what accolades Maxey will achieve in the upcoming seasons.

Trade Up or Down?

Every card has a price, whether it’s cash value or trade value. Trading is a good way to hold onto your cash and get either a bigger card for cards you don’t want, or to downsize your collection. If you’re trading up, a good strategy would be to trade your base and higher #’d cards for lower #’d parallels. For others, trading down may be a better option.

Some hobbyists have their entire collection’s value in a few cards. This could be the time to diversify the portfolio and bring in younger stars to fill it out, especially with ultra-modern cards’ value taking a dip and higher-end cards either staying the same or increasing. Now would be a good time to get the most trade assets for those higher-end cards.

Buy Singles, Not Wax

Wax is still too high and you’ll rarely get back half the investment of purchasing a box. Breaks are more accessible and involve less risk, but singles are the way to go. No, there’s no replacement for the feeling of opening a huge card out of a pack, but with the prices of wax and the increase of production, trading card companies have killed that feeling. Purchasing the cards you want will help you avoid the disappointment of owning piles of valueless base cards.

Expand Your Portfolio

Now could be the time to enter a new sport fandom or even a TCG. Prices of Pokemon and other trading card games have dropped. It could be a good time to get the highly sought-after Charizard from the original Pokemon Base Set from 1999. Hockey just entered its offseason, and Upper Deck has been known to create stellar NHL cards.

The Future is Bright for the Hobby

While the economy is teetering on recession, the world is getting back to pre-COVID vibes in regards to travel and sporting events. The NFL season is right around the corner, then comes the NBA, and then the World Cup. The summer months always present a lull in the market and it always picks back up right around The National Sports Collector Convention, and then Week 1 of the NFL season. In addition, the World Cup will take place on the pitch at the end of November and will conclude a week before Christmas.

Interest in soccer cards will definitely increase and that will certainly flow into the other sports. Also, the NFL is playing with the idea of launching a streaming service in 2023 in place of NFL Sunday Ticket on DirectTV, which should make it easier for international fans to access the sport. The Sports Memorabilia market, currently valued at $26.1 billion, is predicted to eclipse $200 billion by 2032, according to Market decipher.

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