The Better Business Bureau is sending out a warning: not all Obama memorabilia is valuable. The only value for most trinkets is sentimental.
Posters, buttons, coins and even bobble-heads are flying off shelves as Americans hurry to grab their own piece of history. However, if you're thinking these trinkets are going to help you get rich think again. The BBB warns that the only value for most Obama memorabilia is sentimental.
The New York Times estimates consumers have already spent as much at $200 million on what's being called "Obamabilia."
While most of the memorabilia attached to President-elect Obama’s Inauguration are not worth much, it doesn’t mean that everything is worthless. Some items may actually increase substantially in value. However, an item generally needs to be extremely rare to be worth much money.
To be a savvy collector, the BBB has the following advice:
Collectors should research the value of Obama-related items before they begin purchasing memorabilia, especially if they are interested in buying pieces that have the potential for substantial appreciation in value.
Confirming the authenticity of memorabilia is not easy. Autographs can be verified by a third party, but for other items, the collector must ask the seller questions about the item, including how the seller came to own it. If the seller can’t answer simple questions, then the collector should walk away.
Make purchases with a credit card.
Consumers should always purchase items with a credit card when shopping online. If the seller turns out to be fraudulent, then the consumer can dispute the charge with the credit card company and may be eligible for reimbursement.
Purchase items from a reputable seller.
When shopping online, collectors should look for the BBB seal on Web sites and click on the seal to confirm the company’s legitimacy. If there isn’t a BBB seal on the site, shoppers should always check a company out with their BBB before they buy at www.bbb.org.
For more BBB advice you can trust on shopping safely click on the link below to their website.