What's a complete 1970 set worth?

Sharon Biederman sbiederm at nova.umuc.edu
Fri Nov 2 11:15:44 EST 2001


   I wasn't sure whether your correspondent was planning to keep or resell
the books.  If the latter, my inclination would be to stress minimum
rather than maximum value.  He or she is relying (at least in part) on
your opinion in determining the purchase price.  If this person thinks
a $7500 return is a realistic possibility, then spending $2800 would be
reasonable.  Later, if the books were advertised individually on ebay and 
the seller averaged only $5 or $6 per book (remember there are insertion
and final value fees), that individual might feel mislead.
   In any case I like the idea that there are entire sets of MLs lying
around in boxes.  I'll take one from 1934!


On Thu, 1 Nov 2001, Scot Kamins wrote:

> Hi Folks,
> Got an interesting piece of mail from a Dogeared user this morning. He 
> asked (in part):
> >What would a complete set of Modern Library from early 70s be worth?  I have 
> >a chance to get a hold of one from a former contestant of the Price is Right 
> >- the full set was one of her prizes.  She's kept them in boxes since then.
> I replied thusly:
> "Depends. If they're the numbered set and included all giants and all 
> regular issues, all in pristine dust jackets, they'd be worth as much as 
> $15/volume on the average. It wouldn't be worth more because there 
> wouldn't be more than six or seven firsts in it. So the total maximum 
> value, assuming you auctioned them off at eBay and they all sold, would 
> be 396 regulars + 102 giants = 498 volumes * 15/volume = about $7,500."
> "If you tried to sell them to a dealer, you'd get 1/3 that top dollar. If 
> you sold them to a ML specialist, you'd get about 40%, again top dollar."
> "This is just my opinion."
> So: What do you folks think?
> Scot Kamins
> ..................................
> Maintaining the Modern Library Collecting Website at
> http://www.dogeared.com
> which (in turn) is supported by The Pavilion City Mall at
> http://www.pavilioncity.com

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