In last week’s edition of the Market Window,Is it Really a Longaberger, we discussed how to identify Longaberger Baskets. Now that you know how to tell if the basket you found is in fact a Longaberger, it is a good time to determine just how much it might be worth!
Placing a value on a basket after it is no longer available from Longaberger, also known as retired, can be confusing and sometimes frustrating. The secondary market, like any market, has its ups and downs; therefore, the value of baskets is constantly changing. Whether or not your basket will fetch top dollar depends on many factors, but supply and demand are most critical.
Before delving into placing a value on each of your baskets it is a good idea to determine why you wish to value your collection. There are two common reasons why a collector would want to attach a dollar amount to their bounty of baskets.
- For insurance purposes. Your baskets are an investment and so it is a good idea to include them on your home owner’s insurance policy. Placing an accurate dollar amount on your collection could help you in the event of a loss. Of course, the best person to contact regarding this subject is your insurance agent.
- To participate in secondary market activity. Whether you wish to sell one basket or 100, the secondary market is open to every collector. Some basket enthusiasts use the secondary market to “clean-up” their collections by selling baskets they no longer need or use. Others use the secondary market as an income generator by buying and selling baskets on a regular basis.
- Determine if your basket is part of a collection or retired from the Regular Line. Baskets that are part of a series or that have retired, generally are worth more than those still available through The Longaberger Company.
- Consider what season it is and what special events are taking place. Oftentimes, season dictates value. For instance, it is a great time to offer Halloween Baskets and Inaugural Baskets because that is what many of us are focused on right now. Selling Christmas Collection baskets in July probably will not garner as much as selling them in November and December.
- Take a look at when your basket was crafted. This is the exception to the rule regarding the value of Regular Line baskets. If you have an older, darker color Regular Line basket it may be worth more than its newer counterpart.
- Verify the condition of the basket. This is perhaps the most important aspect in determining a basket’s value. A basket in mint condition, meaning it has no flaws, signs of usage, or damage will be worth far more than a basket with any of these things. Take for instance a transaction we saw recently. A 1983 Large Picnic Basket, which usually sells for anywhere between $108 and $165, sold for just $37.50 Why? Because it had a cracked handle.
- Look for Longaberger family signatures. Oftentimes a basket’s value will increase if a Longaberger family member has signed it. This is especially the case if Dave, Grandma Bonnie, Tami, or Rachel has signed the basket. Multiple signatures are a little more rare and therefore add value to the basket, too.
No matter what the reason you have for wanting to value your baskets, you will want to be accurate and above all, truthful! With the information outlined above you are sure to get top dollar for your baskets!