This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here
Stocks Under $10 with 50-100% upside potential - 14 days FREE!

10 Completely Worthwhile Collectibles

PORTLAND, Ore. (TheStreet) -- You can't overestimate or overvalue the U.S. buying public's love of collectibles.

Roughly four years ago, we ran a seemingly innocuous story about a handful of completely worthless collectibles that took on a life of its own. Millions of you read it, websites including Yahoo and MSN picked it up, collector sites argued with it and the story itself required a bit of updating when artist Thomas Kincaid died. Still, it struck a nerve by pointing out the negligible worth of items including Hess trucks, Hummel figurines, Precious Moments items and, yes, Kincaid's prints and paintings.

It even had enough legs to inspire an NPR outpost in New Hampshire to interview us about it last year, nearly three years after its original run.

The problem is that it did only half the job. It warned buyers away from buying dud collectibles unless they really enjoyed the items, but failed to mention where collectors could redirect their investment if they were still trying to turn a profit.

Our experience with the last piece tells us there is no sure thing, especially if you're motivated solely by the prospect of making a quick buck. There are some niches that make it easier for collector investors to sort the gems from the junk, though. The Certified Guaranty Co., for example, helps collectors by grading comic book quality and grading criteria. Wine aficionados, meanwhile, can consult Wine Advocate and Bordeaux market forecasts to see if they should keep cellaring their vintages or just drink them. Art collectors are all too capable of tracking trends through Sotheby's, Christie's and Freeman's auctions.

"Collectibles" investors, however, have to contend with a fickle auction market led by eBay, which handles roughly $3 billion a year in collectibles sales on its own. While sites such as Kovels.com offer guidance, "collectibles" and the companies that make them are pawns of supply and demand. It's how you lose $100,000 investing in Beanie Babies, but it's also the big reason why many of the most lucrative collectibles weren't produced as "collectibles" at all.

We consulted with the folks at auction tracking site What Sells Best and found 10 examples of collectibles that made a killing for their sellers. If you have similar tastes or interests, there may be some riches tucked away in your collection as well:

1 of 11

Select the service that is right for you!

COMPARE ALL SERVICES
Action Alerts PLUS
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer and Stephanie Link actively manage a real portfolio and reveal their money management tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
  • Weekly roundups
TheStreet Quant Ratings
Try it NOW
Only $49.95/yr

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
  • Upgrade/downgrade alerts
Stocks Under $10
Try it NOW

David Peltier, uncovers low dollar stocks with extraordinary upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
  • Weekly roundups
Dividend Stock Advisor
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer's protege, David Peltier, identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Alerts when market news affect the portfolio
  • Bi-weekly updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Real Money Pro
Try it NOW

All of Real Money, plus 15 more of Wall Street's sharpest minds delivering actionable trading ideas, a comprehensive look at the market, and fundamental and technical analysis.

Product Features:
  • Real Money + Doug Kass Plus 15 more Wall Street Pros
  • Intraday commentary & news
  • Ultra-actionable trading ideas
Options Profits
Try it NOW

Our options trading pros provide daily market commentary and over 100 monthly option trading ideas and strategies to help you become a well-seasoned trader.

Product Features:
  • 100+ monthly options trading ideas
  • Actionable options commentary & news
  • Real-time trading community
  • Options TV
To begin commenting right away, you can log in below using your Disqus, Facebook, Twitter, OpenID or Yahoo login credentials. Alternatively, you can post a comment as a "guest" just by entering an email address. Your use of the commenting tool is subject to multiple terms of service/use and privacy policies - see here for more details.
Submit an article to us!
DOW 16,919.59 +80.85 0.48%
S&P 500 1,981.60 +9.86 0.50%
NASDAQ 4,527.5140 +19.2020 0.43%

Brokerage Partners

Rates from Bankrate.com

  • Mortgage
  • Credit Cards
  • Auto

Free Newsletters from TheStreet

My Subscriptions:

After the Bell

Before the Bell

Booyah! Newsletter

Midday Bell

TheStreet Top 10 Stories

Winners & Losers

Register for Newsletters
Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs