I've always liked doing puzzles and I used to buy a lot of puzzles to sell until.... one day I realized that a 1000 piece puzzle does NOT necessarily have 1000 pieces. It might have 999 or 1002 so counting the puzzles' pieces did not guarantee they were all there. What!? The next puzzle I sold, I built before I sold it to guarantee it was complete. Since then my inventory of puzzles sat as I don't have the space and time to build them. Recently, before Christmas I decided to list some 'as is'. I listed the ones that were collectable thinking I could maybe still get a decent price for them. Well they haven't sold yet but it got me thinking about puzzles again and I decided to write a post and share a few things I've learned about selling puzzles.
1. Obviously the most important thing I learned is that just counting the pieces isn't enough to sell it as complete. You should build it or specify that you haven't built it and can't guarantee that it is complete. I've seen very collectable puzzles sell for a lot of money even with missing pieces.
2. Some puzzle manufacturers will replace a missing piece. Here is a contact list of companies that replace pieces.
3. Most thrifts have the puzzle boxes taped shut so it is hard to know if it is in good condition unless you undo the tape. I'm always scared someone is going to catch me and yell at me LOL but usually I pay no more than a couple of dollars.
4. Used puzzles can go for $100s even $1000s of dollars. It's worth it to learn the most desired brands and keep an eye out for them. Take a look at completed listings on ebay and sort by price.
Some good brands to look out for are. In general wooden puzzles seem to be more valuable.
- Heye Puzzles (they are usually in a triangular box). I have found three so far in my selling career. They are very collectable and can go for good money. Here is one I have listed.
- Puzz 3D 3 Dimensional Puzzles - New York seems to be particularly valuable
- Stave Wooden Puzzles - these are in a very plain box that I would probably overlook if I didn't know better
- Par Puzzles
- Liberty Puzzles