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Best way to sell a MASSIVE LEGO Collection?

OK, I am switching gears.  I think I am going to sell the bulk of our MASSIVE LEGO collection, I am quite sure millions of sorted pieces, hundreds of sets, some really rare items (e.g. Batpod) huge mini-figure collection, top tier custom printed parts and minifigures, lighting, etc.

I will probably just piece it out on eBay, but curious if anyone had any other ideas of who would purchase something this large?  Collection located in Ocala FL area.

Comments

  • BumblepantsBumblepants Sofia BG/Dallas TXMember Posts: 4,172
    You can try listing stuff on here, might find some fellow Floridians. Craigslist might save you a lot of time and effort shipping but might be a lot worse for reach.
  • danstraindepotdanstraindepot Member Posts: 169
    Yeah, not a fan of craigslist.  And selling on here takes too much time IMO.  I was thinking more along the lines if anyone is interested in a 100K+ collection as a whole.
  • akunthitaakunthita USAMember Posts: 980
    edited December 2017

    I'm in Gainesville, less than an hour from you. I don't think I would be interested in the whole collection, as I don't have that much money/space, but if you post some pictures or a list of what you have I might be interested in at least some of it (particularly the customs you have).  You might consider having an open house/garage sale type of event and advertise it in the surrounding areas. Ocala is a really good location that is convenient for most people in Central Florida.

    An other option you might consider is one of the local flee markets. Ocala, Waldo, St. Pete, Orlando are some I have visited and have seen LEGO. I also have also sold stuff at the St. Pete market some years ago (not LEGO-related), and the booth next to ours sold LEGO and other toys. It was crazy how busy they were around the holidays. It may take some time to sell the whole collection, but you could hire someone to do it for you on the weekends.

  • akunthitaakunthita USAMember Posts: 980

    One other suggestion; the BrickShow brothers are in South Florida, and they have lots of experience with selling LEGO at various shows, conventions and other events. You might reach out to them for help with selling your collection, or they may even be interested in it themselves.

  • danstraindepotdanstraindepot Member Posts: 169
    Thank you for the suggestions.
  • alaskaguyalaskaguy Member Posts: 213
    You have to define "best".  Do you want to maximize sales velocity, revenue generated or lack of time spent in the sales process? You can pick any two. The third will be determined as a result.
  • danstraindepotdanstraindepot Member Posts: 169
    I think I am going to hire a local guy to bricklink and in some cases eBay it for me.  I don't personally have time to sell it, but I'll take a bath in a bulk sale.
  • eMJeeNLeMJeeNL The NetherlandsMember Posts: 131
    edited December 2017
    Not sure it anyone would really want to buy your bricks after you took a bath in them, be it in bulk or otherwise?

    ;)

    GLWTS.
  • danstraindepotdanstraindepot Member Posts: 169
    lol.  It is a funny expression...
    SumoLego
  • alaskaguyalaskaguy Member Posts: 213
    eMJeeNL said:
    Not sure it anyone would really want to buy your bricks after you took a bath in them, be it in bulk or otherwise?
    I would buy them. But I'd expect a heavy discount and clean title to the merchandise.
  • SumoLegoSumoLego New YorkMember Posts: 8,284
    edited December 2017
    In observing a number of large collections being sold off, your best bet seems to be to sell the rare and expensive sets via eBay (or collector channels) in order to maximize their value, then expect to take a more modest value for bulk parts.  

    Balancing the value of time versus the item value is the timeless struggle.  Is it worth holding onto bulk bricks for years in order to scratch out a few extra dollars?
    FizyxCCC
  • danstraindepotdanstraindepot Member Posts: 169
    I think since so many of our parts are already sorted it's worth giving Bricklink a try.  I can be competitive with pricing, pay a guy, and likely still come out way ahead.  I have the space to operate and we ship from our company daily anyhow.   It is certainly an interesting conundrum though!
    FizyxSumoLego
  • SumoLegoSumoLego New YorkMember Posts: 8,284
    ^ I occassionally worry about the person that would have to sort out my massive hoard of plastic.
    mithridatedatsunrobbie
  • legogallegogal USMember Posts: 751
    SumoLego said:
    ^ I occassionally worry about the person that would have to sort out my massive hoard of plastic.
    That is why I started sorting my formerly massive collections a few years ago...didn't even know how much LEGO and other collectibles I owned. Once it is sorted and entered into a spreadsheet, you can decide what you want to keep and what to dispose of. And built sets you don't want to display are more easily stored broken down. If a person has massive, unsorted, uninventoried collections of anything, it can overwhelm their relatives/survivors, who have to deal with so much stuff that it can ruin their lives. 

    It is a huge load off my mind that the collections are now manageable and easy to play with. Our house has a lot more usable space and is easier to clean. And the extra money has made it possible to travel more often to places that are important to me. 
    FizyxLego_Starcatwrangler
  • alaskaguyalaskaguy Member Posts: 213
    legogal said:
    If a person has massive, unsorted, uninventoried collections of anything, it can overwhelm their relatives/survivors, who have to deal with so much stuff that it can ruin their lives.
    Only if they don't just box or bag it up, take it to Goodwill (or similar) and drop it off.
  • PaperballparkPaperballpark UKMember Posts: 2,871
    SumoLego said:
    ^ I occassionally worry about the person that would have to sort out my massive hoard of plastic.
    I know a guy who says that no matter what his children do to him, it's nothing compared to the headache they'll have when he's gone :) Having seen his (vast, vast) collection, I can completely understand what he means!
    SumoLegoFizyxkiki180703
  • alaskaguyalaskaguy Member Posts: 213
    This kind of stuff is really only a headache if the people you leave behind insist on making money from it.  I guarantee you that if they simply put an ad on Craigslit that says, "A ton of free Legos - first come, first serve - must take ALL" along with a few pictures, all that stuff will be gone the same day, and "your people" will not have to lift a finger to make it go away.

    My dad has a metric tonne of stuff in his basement. Tools, books, benches, pieces, parts, whatever - all related to his hobby.  Worth thousands of dollars. It would take months to inventory all that crap, organize it and try to sell it. I don't have time for all of that.  When the time comes - I'm not doing any of that.  I'll go down there, take what I want - and make offer the rest up just as I describe above.  It will be gone the first weekend it becomes available.
    pharmjoddmcc0
  • FizyxFizyx ColoradoMember Posts: 240
    alaskaguy said:
    This kind of stuff is really only a headache if the people you leave behind insist on making money from it.  I guarantee you that if they simply put an ad on Craigslit that says, "A ton of free Legos - first come, first serve - must take ALL" along with a few pictures, all that stuff will be gone the same day, and "your people" will not have to lift a finger to make it go away.

    My dad has a metric tonne of stuff in his basement. Tools, books, benches, pieces, parts, whatever - all related to his hobby.  Worth thousands of dollars. It would take months to inventory all that crap, organize it and try to sell it. I don't have time for all of that.  When the time comes - I'm not doing any of that.  I'll go down there, take what I want - and make offer the rest up just as I describe above.  It will be gone the first weekend it becomes available.

    That's true, but it's also the case that for many very large collections, a significant amount of people's inheritance value can be tied up in the collection.  A couple hundred, or if you're doing well, a couple thousand dollars you might be able to blow off, but when that number can start to be counted in 10s of thousands, I think the vast majority of people will have a much harder time just dropping it. 

    I mean, lets just consider a LEGO collection of ~1 million pieces, which I think most of us would consider large or maybe even very large.  (Anywhere else they would consider it very large, I know :P )   Now, I found some numbers there were about 325-350 pieces in a generalized, random assortment of a pound of LEGO, and figuring a sale price of say $8 a pound, we can figure that, conservatively, a single piece has a sale price of about $0.0246.  For 1 million pieces, you're looking at a value of $24,600. At the low end. (Probably the extreme low end.)  Now consider the OP's collection, which has not only several million bricks, but also old sets, rare items, a large minifig collection, etc etc.  All of those extra items can add hundreds of dollars of value over the plain cost of the bricks alone EACH.  When they get added up, the difference in prices can easily be more 10s of thousands of dollars.

    Now, for large collections, most people have some idea if there is real value in the collection, and everyone knows that loose bits in a collection are worth less than any sets of items that may exist in a collection.  When you look at it like that, you have three scenarios:  Give it away, sell an unsorted collection, or sell a sorted and orgainzed collection.  If you're dealing with the kind of very large collection that OP is dealing with in an inheritance situation, you're talking about a lot of money that is just getting left behind for every step down from selling a sorted and organized collection.  And again, if you can afford to leave those potentially 10s of thousands of dollars to rot, then good on you... but most people can't afford that.  And so these large, unorganized collections can quickly and easily turn into a massive headache to deal with.
    legogalMattDawsoncatwranglerRenegade007cjh
  • alaskaguyalaskaguy Member Posts: 213
    Right. But once again, it is only a headache if someone lets it.

    In your million brick scenario, you just make it someone else’s problem via an auction. Hire someone to inventory what you have, publicize it, and then run the auction. They take their 20% or whatever, cut you a check for the rest, and off you go without having done much work.

    It is like i told the other poster in another thread. You can maximize sales revenue, speed of selling everything off or lack of effort in doing the sale. Pick any two, the third will be determined for you. In this case, “reducing the headache” means you are picking you’re maximizing the lack of effort to do the sale, by hiring someone else to do it for you. That is a cost. You can still maximize sales revenue, but that means it will take that person longer to sell your stuff, and there is a cost to that too.
    pharmjoddmcc0
  • alaskaguyalaskaguy Member Posts: 213
    As for what you can or cannot afford...maybe it is just your terminology, but I’m going to disagree with you. If I die and leave you $1M in pennies - can you afford not to come and get it?  Sure you can. You know why? Because if you don’t come and get it, you are no worse off than you were if I had never left you the $1M to begin with. You can easily afford not to come get the pennies. On top of that, if you tell CCC that if he gives you $50,000 in cash (hundreds please), you will give him the $1M in pennies - but he has to come and pick them up, you can afford that too, for the same reason, and then some. In that case, you are still better off by $50K
  • pharmjodpharmjod 1,170 miles to Wall Drug, USAMember Posts: 2,301
    I've got to ask, what is prompting you to unload everything? You've got some pretty amazing customs and MOCs. 
  • danstraindepotdanstraindepot Member Posts: 169
    My boys have now lost interest at 15 & 17 (we used to spend hours each night building together) and though I love LEGO and will keep some I just don't have the time to keep it up.  Also a collection of this size makes it very difficult if I ever want to move to another area.  That's 99% of it.  Here are two more very minor thoughts.  I am fortunate enough to have the space and funds at this point of my life, but I don't want this collection to tie our family down.

    1. I feel (possibly very wrong) that values may be highest now for many of the sets.
    2. I love how many great builders there are, but in some ways this makes building impressive MOC's tough.  I don't want to spend 5 hours building a tree.  If I had the time I'd be up for the challenge, and I really think it feeds better building overall, but I don't have the time.

    It's bittersweet for sure.  But we've had a great run with LEGO.  Won a trip to CA to WB, made great friends, bonded with my boys, traded our Batcave for an obscenely expensive car.... it just feels like the right time.
    pharmjodFowlerBrickssamiam391SumoLegoFizyxcatwranglerkiki180703
  • dmcc0dmcc0 Nae far fae AberdeenMember Posts: 259
    What are the chances that a year (or 3) down the line you'll regret selling it all?  If there's even a slim chance that this could happen, would it be worth keeping it in storage for a while and if you still feel the same way then sell up?

    There's also the possibility that your boys may get back into LEGO at some point too, which may rekindle your interest.
  • pharmjodpharmjod 1,170 miles to Wall Drug, USAMember Posts: 2,301
    @danstraindepot best of luck to you. Those are very understanable reasons! 
    SumoLego
  • SumoLegoSumoLego New YorkMember Posts: 8,284
    ... traded our Batcave for an obscenely expensive car...
    It was for one of these, yes?


    gmonkey76pharmjodRainstorm26catwranglerdatsunrobbieFowlerBricksmsanderskiki180703
  • pharmjodpharmjod 1,170 miles to Wall Drug, USAMember Posts: 2,301
    pharmjod said:
    @danstraindepot best of luck to you. Those are very understanable reasons! 
    I've got to stop posting replies on my phone. My spelling is horrible.
    SumoLego
  • SumoLegoSumoLego New YorkMember Posts: 8,284
    pharmjod said:
    pharmjod said:
    @danstraindepot best of luck to you. Those are very understanable reasons! 
    I've got to stop posting replies on my phone. My spelling is horrible.
    I think you should put down the drugs.
    pharmjod
  • CCCCCC UKMember Posts: 15,419

    1. I feel (possibly very wrong) that values may be highest now for many of the sets.

    These are probably the ones you should start to sort out and sell individually. Prices are high if you sell direct to the right people - the collectors - rather than resellers. And even if prices continue to go up, for many sets you will have had the decent jump anyway.

    Why not start selling the high value ones a few per week and see how it goes. If it is too much work, give up and sell the lot as a collection for a lower price than you would if it was individual sets.

    Fizyx said:
    alaskaguy said:
    This kind of stuff is really only a headache if the people you leave behind insist on making money from it.  I guarantee you that if they simply put an ad on Craigslit that says, "A ton of free Legos - first come, first serve - must take ALL" along with a few pictures, all that stuff will be gone the same day, and "your people" will not have to lift a finger to make it go away.

    My dad has a metric tonne of stuff in his basement. Tools, books, benches, pieces, parts, whatever - all related to his hobby.  Worth thousands of dollars. It would take months to inventory all that crap, organize it and try to sell it. I don't have time for all of that.  When the time comes - I'm not doing any of that.  I'll go down there, take what I want - and make offer the rest up just as I describe above.  It will be gone the first weekend it becomes available.

    That's true, but it's also the case that for many very large collections, a significant amount of people's inheritance value can be tied up in the collection.  A couple hundred, or if you're doing well, a couple thousand dollars you might be able to blow off, but when that number can start to be counted in 10s of thousands, I think the vast majority of people will have a much harder time just dropping it. 

    Thsi is where the owner of the collection can help prior to their death, especially if they want their family to benefit from the value. Keep the collection sorted and rough ideas of values so that they are easily found, and the best bits sold off easily.
    Fizyx
  • ryjayryjay Member Posts: 882
    edited December 2017
    if the sets have any value, find the time to sell them.  If your time isn't worth selling them, then just donate them and be done with it, and move on to your next thing.

    For me in the past, I've rented a table at a toy show and unloaded many things.  Spent one Friday getting ready and a saturday selling.  What was left went to goodwill.
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