It’s easy to forget the incredible opportunity before us. Scarce and rare older cards are common. When these cards can be found they’re almost always still affordable. It’s easy to believe that these days will last forever.
Remember though, cards are affordable only because of the currently small number of collectors. Even a few hundred serious new collectors entering the market as buyers can dry up the available supply. This would have a tendency to push prices through the ceiling.
Be aware that things are changing rapidly in the credit card collecting hobby. Faster than most collectors conceive. Let me point out some of these changes.
Why is the card collecting hobby market changing?
First, consider that new collectors are entering the hobby daily. This is because of publicity. Publicity from numerous directions and sources.
Collecting credit cards is being embraced by the numismatists. Currently, the majority of CREDIT CARD COLLECTOR subscribers have a numismatic background. COIN WORLD regularly runs articles about CCC and credit card collecting.
The hobby is making progress into the field of collectibles, and news of the credit card collecting hobby is entering the mainstream business press.
2. Attitude of collectors
The second change is the attitude of the credit card collector. When I first saw credit card collecting articles the writers were apologetic for having such an “unusual” interest. Even one “professional” writer simply belittled the credit card collector. All of this has ended.
Credit card collecting has earned its place of recognition as a young and growing hobby. I’m now waiting to see the next phase. The evolution of the proud collector. That’s the self-satisfied and confident collector who shares his collecting experiences with others by saying, “I’ve collected cards for years. I started back in…”. The fascinating part is that there will be an intent listening audience!
3. The investor-collector
And third, a new phenomenon has appeared. It’s called the “credit card investor”. The investor I spoke to wasn’t interested in the “slow” accumulating approach more commonly called “collecting”. He wanted a collection of older cards and he wanted them now! I unfortunately (or fortunately) turned him off by telling him there weren’t any dealers in the hobby. He wouldn’t be able to get out his check book and buy an instant collection.
This matter of credit card investing is quite serious. The only thing keeping investors out of the hobby is the lack of dealers. Keep in mind that it’s only a matter of time before dealers will be appearing. To support the expenses of a dealer means that prices will have risen tremendously. By that time you may not be able to afford the pieces you desire.
Spend time and effort in the credit card collecting hobby to adapt
Begin immediately to search for the pieces you need. Sure, it takes effort, but specimens are affordable when they can be found.
You’re going to have to spend time and money to find the cards you want. You need to run ads in hobby publications and scour eBay. Remember, if you didn’t have to work for this opportunity it wouldn’t be here.
If this sounds like too much work, then fine. But don’t forget, others are doing it. It’s like Robert Furman once told me, “Credit card collecting will evolve, with or without you.”
Seize the opportunity while it lasts
The opportunity to find affordable rarities exists today, but it will take effort. It’s possible that if you don’t own the card soon, you may not be able to afford to own it. To paraphrase Benjamin Franklin, “Take care of your collection and your collection will take care of you.”
Copyright 1987 by Greg Tunks