It's always been thought that an artist's work increased exponentially when they passed on to the great oil painting in the sky. Gerhard Richter is proof that' s not necassarily true. Often called the "world's greatest living artist", Richter, 80, just had this masterpiece sell at auction for an incredible $34 million. Critics call it a controlled chaos masterpiece. Personally I wouldn't have gone higher than $30 million, but you know me. Cheap
So last nights foray into a new collectable and possibility of profit turned out to do quite well. With a small investment, a quick drive to the auction and a 25% payout on the final hammer fee, I still turned a 470% profit on 5 books. Easy peasy.
So some quick tips for all the book collectors out there.
1. If you plan on keeping it in your collection, BUY SOMETHING YOU LIKE! The whole point behind collecting for fun is to enjoy it. Read it, put it away and display it properly.
2. If you're buying a book for investment, remember you don't have to spend a lot and the book does not have to be old. One of the most highly sought after book was published in 1997. What was it? The first of the "Harry Potter" series. A first edition hard cover with dust jacket is currently worth about 5-$9,000.
3. Signed books can triple a books value. The same Harry Potter book, signed by the author can fetch up to $15,000
4. Condition, condition, condition. I will continue to beat this drum loudly. The Pierre Berton signed book I sold last night was in poor condition and I still made 400% mark up. The same book in pristine condition would have been double the price.
Next Up. How to identify a First edition by the printing number.
Anyone who loves to collect can remember when you could find a treasure at a second hand store. Old toys, lunch kits, china, great old antiques, you remember, I know you do.
Anyone who's tried to find those same collectables now at those same second had stores knows it damn near impossible. Now you find anything that may be worth more than a few bucks behind glass, under lock and key. Cheap watches that you can buy online for$6 are going for $35. Old comics, old sports cards; they all have a piece of paper with them showing what you would have to pay if you wanted that item on Ebay. It's tough to stay ahead of the curve.
Well, here's one that they may have overlooked. While on a hunt this weekend, I started flipping through the biographies. I was looking for local writers, hoping to find an autographed copy. Well lo and behold, within 10 minutes I came upon 2 signed first editions. First, Pierre Berton's autograph in a 25 year old book. Within minutes an autographed copy of a Reverand Schuler book. These books are now at an auction, I'll let you know how I did on them. So, it's not impossible to find stuff, you just have to think outside the box. Let me know where and when you plan to scour the bookshelves. I want to get there first.
A collector of everything. I know a little about a lot, and a lot about a little. But!! I know where to find it!.