So you're like me, you have a huge Pokémon card collection, some old, some modern, and some graded. You're at a point where you want to find out what they're worth so you can continue collecting or buy yourself something nice.
How do you find out what they're worth without getting scammed by a less than honest card shop or someone on the internet?
In this article we're going to look at a few easy and effective approaches to appraising your Pokémon Trading Card Game (TCG) collection.
Before we get into the different approaches, I wanted to put something out there. If you're a longtime collector like I am, you might value your Pokémon cards higher than what they are actually worth. I get it, they are a part of your life and they might be worth a lot to you. Don't be too disappointed if your cards have little to no actual value.
Finding the Value of Raw Pokémon Cards that are Ungraded
I'm going to take a wild guess that you have more ungraded Pokémon cards in your collection than graded Pokémon cards. For the sake of this article, we're going to refer to your ungraded Pokémon cards as raw cards.
I've experimented with a few ways to appraise raw Pokémon cards. For example, the most popular methods might be the following websites:
Let's start with the PokeDATA website which has recently started getting traction amongst Pokémon collectors.
On the PokeDATA website, you enter the name of the card that you have and it will bring up a list of potential matches. For example if you entered "Venusaur" into the search box, you'd get a nice list of all the Venusaur cards from each of the TCG sets.
You can click on any card in the search results to see a table and graph of the recent sales for that card.
On paper, this seems like the hands down best way to find the value of the cards in your collection. However, what I've found is that the recent sales aren't so recent or complete. For example, it might have data from a few weeks ago, but between then and now there could have been many more sales at drastically different values.
If you don't need the most bleeding edge sale data, PokeDATA might be fine for you when it comes to appraising your raw Pokémon cards.
When it comes to finding the value of raw Pokémon cards, I find the TCGplayer website to be the best bet.
TCGplayer is a little different than PokeDATA because TCGplayer is an online marketplace for buying trading cards from a collection of sellers and card shops. It isn't an analysis tool for tracking trends like PokeDATA.
When you're on the TCGplayer website, enter the name of your card and you'll be able to quickly and easily see the "Market Price" as well as what the low prices are for each card.
If you're interested in buying raw Pokémon cards on TCGplayer, it is worth checking out my previous article on the topic titled, Buy Single Pokémon TCG Cards from TCGplayer for Cheap .
There are other ways to find the value of your raw Pokémon cards, but TCGplayer and PokeDATA are probably my favorite because they are easy to use and generally reliable.
Finding the Value of Graded PSA, CGC, or Similar Pokémon Cards
The process for finding the value of your graded Pokémon cards is a little different than finding the value of your raw Pokémon cards. There are generally less of any graded Pokémon card in circulation than a raw card and potentially less available for sale or recently sold.
For finding the value of your graded Pokémon cards, I recommend the following:
I want to go with what I said previously about the PokeDATA website. Don't rely on it for having all the recent sales data and don't rely on it for having information on every grading provider. It will likely have information on the popular providers like PSA and CGC, but maybe not the others.
Instead, I'd actually recommend using eBay directly to appraise your graded Pokémon cards.
On eBay you can easily search for your cards, the grades, and what they sold for. You'll get the most recent data all the time, and the best part is that most people are selling their graded cards on the platform.
You do have to take a few things into consideration when using eBay to appraise your Pokémon cards.
- Look at cards that were sold, not just cards that were listed or had previously expired.
- Look at cards that received bids, not cards that were sold on best offers.
You can use the search facets on eBay to show sold items. We want to narrow the search on this criteria because many sellers will list the cards based on personal value, not actual value. Many of these personal value listings will never sell and are not a good indicator of what the cards are actually worth. It's also very important to look at listings that had bids rather than those that received an offer. eBay doesn't share what the offers are so a card that may be listed for $1,000 may have only sold for $1 based on the offer. It is not a good way to measure the value of your graded card.
When I publish a video of a graded PSA return or a CGC return, I use the eBay approach for showing the recently sold prices.
If you're wondering what your raw or graded Pokémon cards are worth, I gave a few methods for getting the job done. Between PokeDATA, TCGplayer, and eBay, you should have enough tools to see if you're sitting on a pile of gold or a pile of cardboard.
I just want to reiterate that there are other ways to track the value of your collection. I also want to reiterate that when finding the value of your cards, more specifically of those sold on auction sites, make sure you're using the sold price, not the list price.
You can find a video version of this article below.