Monday, June 13, 2011

June 2011 Nancy Drew Prices on eBay

Consider this lot of 24 Nancy Drew books with dust jackets.

24 Nancy Drew Mystery Stories Most w Dustjackets

The books have the wartime conditions notice, so they are from the 1940s. The lot sold for $243.46 in an auction.

Now take a look at this lot.

Lot of 23 Nancy Drew Hard Cover Books 1930s to 1950s

This lot closed at only $66 in an auction, yet eight of the books have dust jackets.

Compare both of the auction listings to the following two Buy It Now lots.

NANCY DREW Collection of 26 Vintage Books - Nice Set

This lot sold for $200 in a Buy It Now. The books are from the 1950s and do not have dust jackets.

Here is another set of all tweed books without jackets.

Nancy Drew 24 piece Mystery Thriller Book Set

This lot sold for $195 in a Buy It Now.

I have long held the belief that some people value the books which do not have dust jackets more than they value the books with dust jackets. I have never understood this manner of thinking, yet time and time again I see closed listings which seem to support this theory.

The first lot which had all books with dust jackets from the 1940s sold at around $10 per book. The second lot which had some books with dust jackets sold at less than $3 per book.

Both of the lots which had all bare books with no dust jackets sold at around $8 per book. This average price per book was much higher than one of the lots which had some dust jackets and only slightly less than the lot that had desirable dust jackets from the 1940s. The jackets from the 1940s are generally worth $20 or more apiece.

The bare books without dust jackets from the 1950s are supposed to be worth around $5 each, yet the books often sell for significantly higher prices.

It is also important to note that the two listings with lower prices were auctions, and the listings with higher prices were Buy It Now listings.

We can draw several conclusions. The first conclusion, as already stated above, is that some people prefer books without jackets and will pay significantly more for a bunch of blue Nancy Drew books without dust jackets.

The second conclusion is that eBay auctions often result in prices that are well below value. I'm not sure how many buyers are aware that many of the people selling series books on eBay at high prices bought 90% or more of their books in recent eBay auctions, usually using a secondary buying ID.

Finally, people are likely to impulse buy books at higher prices when they see a large lot of books in a Buy It Now.


Paula said...

I don't understand the prices on ebay - it is quite confusing! Three years ago when I started collecting Nancy Drew, prices seemed more stable. Now they are all over the map!

It seems if a buyer is willing to buy books in lots, he/she can get very good per book prices. But this is deceptive. The buyer must then 1) resell the unwanted books - which requires quite a bit of effort - to get some of his/her money back, or 2) eat the cost of the other books, which can result in a much higher cost per book for the ones the buyer actually wanted. (And in the current market, you can try to resell, but there is no guarantee the books will sell.)

When I first started collecting, and wanted/needed lots of books, I found that buying books in lots was cost effective. But now I've found, unless I want to be a full-time bookseller, it just doesn't pay anymore. I now prefer to buy individual books, or small lots, where I know more or less what I am getting. I'm paying more per book, but I am pretty much getting just what I want and not overwhelming myself further with more extras / books to sell. I'm still looking for bargains of course, just staying away from the larger lots. I do enjoy reselling the extra books I have gotten, or books from my collection that I've upgraded, but I am so much "better" at buying, I end up with too many books!

Some of the prices are amazingly low. If we only had a crystal ball that would tell us in x years the prices will rebound, then we would all feel justified to buy and hold all the wonderful "bargains". ;)

Jennifer White said...

Since prices are all over the place, this makes it hard for new buyers to know how much to pay for books.

I am once again disgusted with eBay (as a seller). It seems that the books I listed a few weeks ago got quite a few page views. The current ones are not getting many page views. My books on Bonanza are getting more views this week than books I list on eBay. Why bother with eBay if no one is going to look at my stuff?

BuckinghamAlice said...

The ebay thing is such a big gamble. I'm pretty new to ND collecting, but I've read your blog for a long while and did a lot of research on the various sites before buying anything. I think some buyers prefer BINs because they're less stressful... you know exactly what you're going to pay, and you don't have to worry about a sniper getting in a split second before the auction ends and outbidding you. I prefer auction formats though because you *do* tend to get better prices. I'm on a budget and I have to balance my "play" money between Nancy Drew and my doll collection, so buying lots is cost prohibitive for me, but I always look at them in my quest for a bargain.

Coffeegulper said...

Jennifer, there's sure no telling what are in people's minds, when you see weird buying decisions such as the ones you've pointed out!

I personally don't like the tweed books....but WITHOUT a dust jacket? Forget it!

Maybe the buyers are newbies who know no better...