Posted by Lance "Magic" Goolsby
One of the things I have been exploring lately is the purchase of comic books on the auction website, E-Bay.
With the recession in full swing, more and more people are trying to make a few quick bucks on E-bay selling various items in their collections. Be it a panel from an artist for a comic book, or their comic books in general. I have also had the pleasure of snagging a few collectible toys from the site as well.
E-Bay is a tricky place to purchase comThere are some rules when purchasing comics from E-Bay that you the reader and purchaser need to look for.
1) check to be sure that the seller has a grade for the comic. There will be some that do not follow certain price guide rules on grading. as a rule of thumb, here is the best source of information for the quality of comics…
2) Feel free to contact the seller and ask questions about the comic, should he/she not have a grade for the comic, if you think they may not know what the grade is, then send them the link so they can check it out and give you a more accurate grade, to help you make up your mind on the purchase. The last thing you want to happen is to get a book for a decent price, only to have it show up in the mail with the cover no longer held by the staples, and the sellers name inside the cover from when he/she was younger. (This happened to me)
3) Sometimes the seller will include an image for the comic cover from another source on the internet. Many times this should give you a warning signal going off in your head. Yet sometimes they just can’t include an image due to technical difficulties, when this happens, feel free to contact the seller again.
4) this is a no-brainer. Check the shipping costs. I live in Germany, and have often found sellers that jack the cost of shipping, to offset the price they are selling the item for. IE: The item is on auction, but shipping will be $18.00 (Many do this since they know they will only make a couple bucks on the item, and will pocket the additional shipping fee you pay for shipping.)
With these in mind, shopping for rare and golden or silver age comics on E-Bay can be a blast. I am often betting on multiple comics each week, and some of the comics I have purchased have been in absolute perfect condition, even though they were printed in 1966 or so, I even have one from 1951 that was listed with the exact grade I placed it in as well.
*******Warning about auctions********
Winning the auctions is like an addiction, the more you bid on, and look for, the more obsessed with winning the auction you become. This can become costly. Make sure you constantly check with your pricing guide to ensure you are not paying too much for your comic, and remember to add in the cost of shipping to get your total purchase cost.
If you do not have a pricing guide, or if you want to access what I consider simply the best online resource for comic book collectors, please check out Stash My Comics, link below. ON the site making an account is not necessary, but if you do, you can create a collection database of your comics, including grade, value and search engines for looking for comics you are interested in purchasing. If you are unsure if an issue is the correct one, there are images you can click on to verify which issue you are bidding on.
I also use it to track the comics I want to bid on, based on the grading the seller has given the book. I can then determine if the price I am bidding, is too high for the comic, of if I am making a good purchase.
Please check them out, like I said, simply the best comic resource available, and fully interactive.
Now is the time to purchase comics, and with luck, should you decide, you can re-sell the items when the recession is over, and make a decent profit.
I wish you all luck