The Best Time to Buy & Sell Sports Cards (Ultimate Guide)

When is the best time to buy and sell my cards? This is one of the most frequent emails we receive, so we would provide some advice along with an easy-to-read flowchart on the best time to buy and sell your baseball, football, hockey, and basketball cards.

It’s one of the hardest things to judge if you’re trying to flip collectible cards. When’s the perfect time to buy or sell, and is there any way to increase the profit potential?

Best Time to Buy and Sell Sports Cards: The Definitive Guide

 

‘Buying low and selling high’ is a simplistic way of seeing things, but it is the key to maximizing revenue. Print and tape the above sheet of paper to your fridge and/or freezer and study it! This chart is critical to fully maximizing your sports card investing portfolio.

It’s worth remembering that cards are an excellent investment for several reasons. They’re uniquely portable, and prices can change rapidly depending on how the season is going.

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Make sure you’re not the first to sell a rare card in case you price it too cheaply. Your personal experiences may vary, but we’ve listed the best times to buy and sell various collectible cards and why it’s ideal.

NOTE: This is in general. Do not follow this 100% of the time, as there are always certain times during any season when buying a card could be highly profitable, BUT in general, this is good advice.

 

Best Time To Sell Football Cards

NFL cards are always popular, but you’ll see an uptick in prices if you can wait until September to offload your collection. The five-month period between September and January is the best time to sell, matching the progression of the NFL season, and there’s an extra boost during the run-up to Christmas.

Opening day is also notable, with cards being snapped up in anticipation of a good year. It’s best to sell on hype, but you could miss out on future profits if a player exceeds expectations later in the season.

NFL best time to buy: May, June, July

NFL best time to sell: Aug, Sep, Oct, Nov, Dec, Jan, Feb

The summer months of May, June, and July are optimal if you’re aiming to buy, with June the best if you’re looking for rock-bottom prices. The cards will still be cheap during the preseason in August, but they’re only going to go up afterward.

 

Best Time To Sell Baseball Cards

While watching expensive editions is always a good idea, all MLB cards will ebb and flow depending on the player/team throughout the season.

Summer is the ideal time to list your MLB cards as interest peaks with the playoff race. We’d also recommend picking up rookie cards as early as possible, as a successful season will see them multiply in price due to hype.

MLB best time to buy: Nov, Dec, Jan, Feb, March

MLB best time to sell: Apr, May, June, July, Aug, Sep, Oct

Spring training will see prospects’ prices rising rapidly as the exhibition games are an excellent way to check out early form, so you’ll have to take advantage of the short window of opportunity for any cards you have an eye on. It’s best to buy anytime after the New Year, with prices starting to pick up again in April.

 

Best Time To Sell Basketball Cards

NBA cards are highly contested for most of the year, but there’s a three-month period during autumn when they should be more affordable (July to September).

The NBA season is long, and prices fluctuate between October and June. Some cards will drop off during midseason, and it’s an excellent time to pick them up if you think a player still has the potential to turn a profit in the latter half.

NBA best time to buy: July, Aug, Sep

NBA best time to sell: Oct, Nov, Dec, Jan, Feb, March, April, May, June

If you have a mint copy of a scarce card, it’s a brilliant idea to list it up for a price you’d be willing to let it go for. Otherwise, keep an eye on fluctuations, and make sure to buy in during the slowest periods.

Prices begin to rise with the beginning of the preseason schedule in October.

 

Best Time To Sell Hockey Cards

As with the NBA, NHL cards are sought after for most of the year. Other investors mainly want them, as they’ve always been seen as an excellent commodity to flip.

Thankfully, there’s a lull during the same trio of months in Autumn (July to September), so it could be worth checking out player prices for both sports if you’re determined to make a good profit on multiple cards or players.

Hockey cards are always popular, and they tend to sell quickly. As with the others, a playoff place will see prices skyrocket, and some positions are worth more than others.

Upper Deck cards are unique collectibles, as the company has held exclusive NHL trading card rights for the last decade.

NHL best time to buy: July, Aug, Sep

NHL best time to sell: Oct, Nov, Dec, Jan, Feb, March, April, May, June

They’ve recently moved into e-Packs, allowing people to buy, open and store cards before the company sends them out. It’s a nice touch, but it’s easier to make money by flipping cards instead of ripping packs.

 

Conclusion and Advice

Any part-time collector knows how to acquire new cards, but there are things you can do to add extra value before selling them. Grading your best cards is an excellent way to bump their price, and it’s worth listing them up if a website like eBay has an ongoing promotion.

Think of the time and day your potential auction will end, and plan accordingly. Sunday at 10 pm EST tends to be favored if you’re looking to snag a large number of American buyers on an auction site, or you could sell just after a significant game if a player had a notable performance.

It’s also worth considering the timing of tax rebates or holidays, as cards make ideal gifts for any fan. Supply will outweigh the demand for the most desirable variations, but fewer alternatives on the market will make it easier to sell.

There’s always a good time to buy or sell sports cards, depending on the player’s form and whether the season is still running. If you can, wait until interest is at its lowest before you commit, and sell on hype when possible.

If you would like advice on when to sell a card, please email us at advice@goldcardauctions.com, and we will assist.

1 thought on “The Best Time to Buy & Sell Sports Cards (Ultimate Guide)”

  1. What would be the best timeframe for selling non-sport cards? Such as Pokemon, Yu-Gi-Oh! Magic the Gathering, etc. I’m curious and looking for some advice/suggestions.

    Reply

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