Whether you plan to pass your collection down to your kids or make a profit later, here are a few basic tips for keeping your baseball card collection in top condition for as long as possible:
Store your cards in plastic sleeves Help protect your cards from liquid, dirt and other contaminants that could potentially damage or destroy your collection. Choose acid-free, PVC-free plastic sleeves or hard plastic sleeves to ensure the cards won’t be eaten away by toxic chemicals, too. If you have any concerns about the way you’re storing your collection, ask an experienced collector for expert advice.
Keep your cards in a sturdy binder Help prevent curling or curved cards by storing them in a flat, sturdy binder. If your cards are out on display, make sure they’re in a case that offers sturdy support and not in an area where they would be exposed to harmful heat.
Keep cards away from sunlight If your cards are on display, don’t set them up in direct sunlight. This is a quick way to lose color and even valuable signatures on your most prized cards. Plus, light could cause serious damage to the paper stock itself and cause it to deteriorate over time.
Keep especially high-value cards in a fire-proof box or safe deposit box Depending on how much your collection is worth, you may need to take a few extra precautions to help protect it against accidents and theft. Consider storing your most valuable cards in a fire-proof box or safe in case a fire or natural disaster strikes your home, or store your collection in a safe deposit box at your bank for even greater peace of mind.
Insure your collection Another way to help protect your baseball card collection is to make sure it is properly insured. Your homeowners or renters policy includes personal property and contents coverage, which protects items in your house or apartment or condo from fire and other specified events, including wind and theft. However, this coverage often has limits for collectibles and high-value items. Check with your insurance agent to see whether you have enough coverage.
If not, you have two options: You could schedule an endorsement on your homeowners or renters policy to increase the limit of your coverage, or you could purchase a personal articles floater from a specialized vendor. Many companies offer expertise in insuring baseball card collections and can help you make the smartest decisions possible about protecting your most prized possessions.
This article was contributed by Carrie Van Brunt-Wiley, Editor of the HomeInsurance.com blog. Carrie has been writing insurance news and consumer information for HomeInsurance.com since 2008. She graduated from the University of North Carolina in Wilmington in 2005 with a B.A. in Professional Writing and Journalism.