When collecting trading cards, trading is a great way to get rid of cards that you don't want and acquire cards that you need. Unfortunately, trading isn't always as easy as it seems. Some collectors are difficult to trade with, it's not always possible to find you need, and you may not have what other collectors need. While the internet has given rise to the number of possible traders out there, trust can also be an issue with someone that you've never met.
To upgrade my collection, I sell on eBay. When buyers pay me through PayPal, I use that cash (and only that cash) to acquire new cards for my collection. By only using that money, it's as if I've traded my sold cards for the purchased cards.
With eBay's 50 free listings per month, it's a great opportunity to list some cards which have no place in my collection. It's surprising to see what you can sell and then buy at virtually the same price.
My past 10 sales on eBay have been:
2011 Paini Prime Cuts Kevin Matthew Auto - $2.79
12-13 Fleer Retro Chet Pickard Autograph - $2.29
2009 Panini Contenders Kory Sheets Auto - $11.83
08-09 ITG BTP Brian Elliot Autograph - $1.99
07-08 UD McDonald's Joe Sakic Insert - $1.69
06-07 UD SPA Ryan Shannon FW Auto - $1.49
09-10 UD SPA SOTT Andrew Cogliano Auto - $1.89
12-13 ITG H&P Daniel Altshuller Jersey - $1.89
09-10 UD Young Guns RC Lot (7) - $3.99
07-08 ITG H&P Cody Franson Auto - $1.79
Total sales - $31.64
My past 10 purchases on eBay have been:
11-12 Parkhurst Champions Pat Stapleton Auto - $3.13
11-12 Parkhurst Champions Doug Wilson Auto - $3.03
11-12 Parkhurst Champions Steve Larmer Auto - $3.55
11-12 Parkhurst Champions Rick MacLeish Auto - $2.53
00-01 UD Retro Epic Signatures Pat Verbeek Auto - $3.01
00-01 UD Retro Epic Signatures Keith Tkachuk Auto - $1.85
00-01 UD Retro Epic Signatures Denis Potvin Auto - $2.30
10-11 Donruss Tough Times Ron Hextall Auto - $3.50
04-05 UD Legendary Signatures Ted Lindsay Auto - $6.59
11-12 Panini Prime Signatures Mark Scheifele Auto - $4.03
Total Purchases - $33.52
There's always a little give and take on shipping charges but, on this occasion, I was on the good side of about two dollars.
When I look at what I sold on eBay, I see some autographs of rookies who never made it, some rookie cards of average players, an insert of a star, and some sticker autographs. Nothing which really fits into my collection.
When I look at what I purchased on eBay for basically the same amount of money, I see 10 hard-signed autographs of stars and minor stars from the past few decades, multiple 1,000 point scorers, multiple Hall of Famers, and an autographed rookie card of a highly-rated young player.
If I placed my ten (sold) cards in front of another collector do you think I'd be able to acquire the ten (purchased) cards. In my opinion, I think I'd be lucky to acquire 2 or 3 of the cards which I bought.
I still enjoy trading. It's nice to make a deal. However, by selling my cards for $30+ dollars and then buying the others for $30+ dollars, it's a way to upgrade my collection with a little more ease.