I’ve been seeing this question a lot lately. My answer? None of them.
Well, I take that back. If you’re looking to buy something because it might have value later, then you shouldn’t bother. If you see a collectible that you really like, by all means, go for it. If you can afford it, that is.
It seems like everyone and their brother is currently selling some sort of Obama/Inauguration collectible. I’ve seen everything from t-shirts to thongs to buttons to pictures, and you can buy them everywhere – infomercials, vendors, specialty websites, and even at the grocery store! Sorry CVS, but I don’t need your commemorative Obama plate. The Obama coins being marketed? Those are not made by the U.S. Mint. Well, they are, but they’re just U.S. coins that have been altered to put Obama’s picture on them. They’re not official commemoratives. So they don’t have any added value either. Though at least they’re worth the coin that has been altered, provided you can get someone to accept it.
I caught a clip on the news a few days ago with a collectibles expert discussing the current memorabilia available and his advice was what I stated above. Don’t buy something because you think it will be valuable later. There’s so much out there that it probably won’t have much value at all, at least not during your lifetime. But if you want something that you can treasure, something you can show your grandchildren, then yes, go buy that Obama button. Wear it proudly. Just don’t expect to sell it for $500 down the road.
Megan is a 40-something government employee in the Washington, DC area. She got interested in Personal Finance when she got out of college and realized that her paycheck wasn’t going to go as far as she had hoped. Since starting this blog, she has managed to buy a house and make a solid start on her retirement goals, and hopes to help others do the same. Here is her story:
In 2007, I was a gainfully employed 20-something with no debt but not a lot of knowledge about personal finance. It was a co-worker’s comment about Roth IRAs that sent me to the internet, searching for information. It was then that I realized that I really didn’t know a whole lot about personal finance and that my current financial situation was due a lot to inherent frugal tendencies, generous family members, a fear of debt, and good luck. While that was working for me, clearly I needed a better plan.
While I had no debt, I was also pretty much living paycheck to paycheck and not worrying about going over budget (I say this as if I had a real budget) because I had an emergency fund set aside to cover any overages.
Except that’s not what an emergency fund is for.
So I did a lot of research, read a lot of blogs, and decided that I needed a plan. I needed to budget. I needed to know what I was spending my money on. I needed to prepare for the future.
I decided to create a blog not only to make myself accountable to others but also to share the knowledge that I gained along the way. I’ve learned so much from my fellow bloggers, and I hope that my readers can find something useful in what I have to share as well.