A Cautionary Tale: Buy With Your Head AND Your Heart

Earlier this week I shared the highlights of a purchase I made weeks ago, one I refer to as “The Unholy Mess”.  I didn’t spend a lot of money to get it, but it took a lot of time to sort through.  I filled a fair number of needs, got some fun surprises, but most importantly for the point of this post, I got a few cards that I should be able to sell on COMC to make up for the cash I spent.

…But this post isn’t about The Unholy Mess.

Just as the dust was settling on that purchase, I happened to get the opportunity to get another box full of cards.  It was mainly football and more expensive but better organized and in a bit nicer condition.  Still basking in the glow of The Unholy Mess, I looked it over, guessed that I could get similar book value out of it and pulled the trigger.

Before I even pulled away in my car, I got a bad case of buyer’s remorse.  Here’s why.

The second box is mostly football from the past 25 years, so the percentage of cards which make it into my collection will be very low.

I had to get creative in finding not-particularly-great temporary places to hold these boxes.  As a result, I feel the need to be quick and efficient in going through these and getting the unwanted stuff out of the house and on its way.

Because I have more money invested in the second box, I feel like I have to make sure I get as much value as I can out of it.

Because I’m less familiar with football collectibles in general, I will have to do more research into what key cards I’m looking for.

Wait a minute… Research?  Return on investment?  Efficiencies?  Deadlines?

Aw, ma-a-a-a-a-a-a-a-an!  That sounds like WORK!

What the heck did I go and do that for?

On reflection, I really should’ve approached the “Buyer’s Remorse” box as I did The Unholy Mess… Ignore what it’s potentially worth in in terms of book value, and focus on what it’s potentially worth to me.  Unless the second box turns out to be an absolute steal or is way more fun than I’m expecting,  I don’t see myself shaking the sense that I should’ve walked away… but we’ll see.

Have any of you had a situation like this where you thought you were making a hobby purchase, only to find that you made a business transaction?


4 thoughts on “A Cautionary Tale: Buy With Your Head AND Your Heart

  1. At the last card show I was at I spent about half an hour shuffling through a big vintage football box when the dealer offered to sell me the whole thing. He wanted $75 and he’d probably have gone down from there but the thought of a) explaining to my wife why I need ANOTHER box of stuff stacked in my office and b) becoming an eBay seller instead of just a buyer made me hesitate. I ended up spending about $25 IIRC on cards from that box so I could have had the whole thing for not much more. No regrets though, it’s better to keep my wife happy.

    • Always a wise move to keep one’s wife happy. I didn’t mention it specifically in my post, but that kind of falls under the “I need to get the cards I don’t want back on their way”. I should be like you and Fuji and not sell things, but COMC has generally worked well for me to get unwanted cards out of the house… I just need to remember not to get too crazy with it.

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