When the wind changes!
My Father as you will already have read and or gathered was not a man who was particularly careful with his belonging. He was more of a hoarder in his later years than a serious collector. He was becoming lonely and whilst he had no loving companionship, he did have finances and with the latter he spent these out rather friviously. He believed with some of his ‘collections’ quantity over quality was the way to go, that more meant higher value. Our current situation with now seeking actual sales values over probate values is proving awkward.
His stamps probate value was £1875 with a retail figure of perhaps £3700, and a trader figure of £2100 might clear a realistic £2500 in auction, and if we are really lucky perhaps to the right buyers £3500, provided we sell in bulk lots.
These cursed Wisden’s however are proving the biggest problems. The problem with Dad is that he really should of sold when he first thought of it in 2008, when they were valued at a pretty high figure, however foresight and hindsight are two very different things altogether. We received a probate quote of £5400, but having just taken them to the expert based in Epsom he has valued them at a mere £1000.
Now l might not be a specialist book dealer, but even l suspect that is a very low figure and certainly in comparison to the probate figure! Sounds like a scam to me! But the expert runs a brick and mortar retail outlet filled chockerblock floor to ceiling with books and something suggests that sales might be slow, so l can understand his quote albeit if taken with a very large handful of salt!
This sort of gives a bit of a kick to my Father’s family who you may recall, believed they were valued in the tens of thousands, however where did we all get this information from in the first place ….. yes of course Dad!
The difference between the stamps and the books is that Dad, managed to retrace all the back copies of the run with the Wisdens by 2008 and then simply spent out between £45 – £55 per year between the last ten years on books he never read. The stamps hold more value, because whilst he only did collect them in a rote fashion, he was still buying valueable stamps out of routine and not out of passion. Which is why ‘technically’ they hold more value.
So in accordance to the cricket expert roughly 60 books are worth a £1000, when someone else thinks those same 60 are worth £5400, all the other books commercials, reprints, secondhand cricket books, newer Wisdens are worthless and hold perhaps a combined value of £400 tops – yes you read that right folks – £400 for a total of over 2000 books!! Astonishing isn’t it? We might mete out a little more, but it will not be much!
Why am l surprised, more importantly am l?
The house which l thought was worth about £350,000 tops failed its electrical tests and knocked my Sister’s valuation of initially £425,000/£375,000 completely out of the equation and l think if anything might close sale at £325K But he didn’t look after that either. He knew it would fail electrical, because we discovered paperwork identifying electrical work he had done in the past and he had gone for very cheap and just passable options when it came to repairs.
Well as they say, when the winds change, they can change quite dramatically. Now the fun and games will really start l feel.