Right off let me tell you I’m a collector. I collect anything baseball mostly for my personal enjoyment and for posterity and I’ve never sold anything from my collection.
I subscribe to periodicals that give me a rough idea of what the value of a particular card or item might be, but the only way you can really determine FMV is to sell it which I have no intention of doing. Occasionally, when I feel I have a special card I’ll send it to Beckett to have it graded, only to find it’s not as special as I thought it was.
One such card was actually a Hockey card ~ a 1979 O-Pee-Chee #18Wayne Gretzky card that had recently sold for over $60,000 on Ebay. I planned on selling this item and I’d already mentally taken a world cruise with the proceeds from this special Gretzky prize, the best card in my collection of over 75,000 cards. Imagine my surprise when Beckett returned the card to me not only ungraded but with a notation of “Questionable Authenticity”. In other words, it was a fake!
I’d paid good money for the card which was purchased from another collector I knew personally. My first inclination was to contact the guy and ask for my money back. In reality, I’m sure he bought it with the same expectations I had, totally unaware. I had no idea what I was buying, no experience and no knowledge in the area of collectibles, and neither did he. Continue reading