Comics books, once purchased mainly for entertainment purposes, hold a different value today for some collectors who see them as potential investments. According to CNNMoney.com, in February 2010, a comic featuring the first appearance of Superman -- which cost 10 cents in 1938 -- sold for £0.6 million at auction. Three days later, a comic with the first appearance of Batman topped it by selling for £699,075. If you've purchased comic books as an investment, consider insuring them. Many homeowner policies do not cover collectibles, so additional coverage may be necessary. Here are a few steps that can help protect your comic book treasures.
Consult with your insurance agent to find out what coverage you already may have on your comics. If you have coverage but feel the policy's coverage limits aren't high enough, ask your agent if you can attach a rider to the policy that increases the coverage. Riders usually require an inventory and appraisal of the collection.
Have your comic collection, or at least the most valuable parts of your collection, inspected by professional comic book graders. A grading service will assign a score on a 1-to-10 scale to each of your comics based on its physical condition. This scale is agreed upon by all comic book fans and provides an accurate guide to pricing your collection. The graders will look for things like tears or creases, loose pages, discolouration and mould.
To find a local grader, you can visit Comics Guaranty LLC (http://www.cgccomics.com). Their website shows how to directly submit comics to CGC for grading, or you can find a local comic shop that is CGC approved and offers grading services.
There will be a cost involved with having your collection graded. But grading is an essential step to having your collection insured, so consider it an investment.
Purchase a comic book price guide to help you determine the value of each comic. One source to consider is the Overstreet Price Guide. Each year, Overstreet prints a new edition with up-to-date values for nearly every comic printed.
You also can find online price guides at sites like ComicsPriceGuide.com and www.ComicBookRealm.com. One advantage online sites hold over printed editions is that they can be updated more regularly, reflecting changing prices due to a surge or decline in popularity of a certain book.
Look up each book in the guide and find its value, according to grade. Each book is assigned different values, depending on the physical condition of the book. The better a book's condition, the greater its value. Once you have recorded the prices of each individual book, adding them up will give you a good estimate of your collection's total value.
If your insurance provider cannot offer enough coverage for your collectibles, find a speciality insurance provider that offers extra insurance for collectibles such as comic books. Collectibles Insurance (www.collectinsure.com) in Maryland is one company that covers comic book collections. You can get an estimate and an application at their website.