Earn up to $5,000 a year on the side of card collecting – it only takes a few hours a month

JESSE Cramer has been a Magic: The Gathering fan for almost 20 years and has been collecting cards since he was a teenager.

After playing the game as a player in his teens and early twenties, Jesse says he realized there was an opportunity to profit from magic cards.

After growing up and playing Magic, Jesse began trading valuable cards from the game


After growing up and playing Magic, Jesse began trading valuable cards from the game

Magic the Gathering was released in 1993 as a tabletop and digital collectible card game with approximately 35 million players.

Jesse, a fiduciary investment advisor and founder of The Best Interest, says he has sold nearly 100,000 cards since discovering the secondary market in 2013.

He said his familiarity with the game and its most valuable cards gives him the opportunity to flip $3,000 to $5,000 worth of cards a year out of a few hours of work each month.

“I’ve always been interested in the economy and markets and how they work,” Jesse told The Sun.

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“There is an arbitrage opportunity because there is such a huge knowledge gap in this market.”

Buying and selling magic cards

Jesse’s most valuable asset as a Magic reseller is his knowledge gained from years of playing.

At a glance, he knows why certain cards have value and others have little value, so he can spot profit potential more easily.

He said that for a novice, it can take about “10 to 20 hours” to get a feel for the symbols and markings to look for as a buyer.

Flipping through magic cards can be an intensive process, and Jesse said she often travels to meet other cardholders and pick up items.

When I buy cards from online marketplaces, I like to see pictures of the cards I’m buying to get an idea of ​​the potential earnings up front.

Most of his flips have a 50% profit margin. He said he could flip a card he spent $15 on for $30, but he’s looking for bigger opportunities if possible.

These are some of the most valuable cards in Jesse's collection


These are some of the most valuable cards in Jesse’s collection

he said:

“I’m looking for a 90% margin. I’m looking for someone who can sell a collection for $100 and find a card worth over $1,000. Spending 10 hours for a $100 profit is I would like to avoid it.”

Still, he takes the opportunity to buy lots of cards from garage sales and online listings without knowing what’s inside.

“I once bought a shoebox full of $20 cards with individual cards worth over $200,” he said.

“It’s a diamond in the rough. You must be willing to gamble.”

Highlights of rare MTG cards

There are nearly 30,000 unique Magic: The Gathering cards, but only a handful are of collector’s value.

“If you go into someone’s attic and find a shoebox with 10,000 cards, I bet one or 200 of them are worth more than a dollar,” Jesse said.

As with many collectibles, age and rarity increase the demand for certain magic cards.

The first set of cards was released in 1993 and is part of Magic’s “Alpha” and “Beta” sets.

Despite the fact that most Alpha and Beta cards are in poor condition and are of little use in modern Magic games, Jesse said they are still among the best products.

“If you get an older set of cards, they may be worth more because they haven’t been printed as much and have a high nostalgia factor,” he said.

“It’s not that people play with it. It’s just rare enough that collectors want it.”

In addition to factors such as age and supply, Magic has its own in-game rarity tiers that contribute to card value, Jesse said.

“Each Magic card has a little symbol that indicates whether the card is common, uncommon, rare, or mythic, depending on how many were printed,” Jesse explained.

This rarity indicator is centered on the right side of the magic card and uses color to distinguish between levels.

  • Common – Black
  • Uncommon – Silver
  • Rare – Gold
  • Mythic – Bronze

“Mythic is the least in supply, so it’s more valuable,” Jesse said.

Flip a Magic Card as a Side Hustle

Although he plays less Magic than he used to, Jesse says his passion for the game drives his side hustle.

But if you’re not that into magic or don’t spend a lot of time on side gigs, you’ll have a hard time keeping up, he said.

Also, the market has been flooded with resellers in recent years, making it harder for other smaller traders to find carvings on their own.

“For someone looking to make it a full-time gig, the more money and time they spend, the more it will feel like a pain,” he said.

“If you have pure nostalgia, it’s fun to flip through someone’s box of old cards, but if I do it permanently, it’s not as profitable and I’m stuck with bad deals to keep my income going.” I have to bend down for it.”

He said he had to “pick and choose his battles” and not chase every chance to get a card in order to take advantage of the opportunities.

“Maybe once a month, but once a quarter you can find something of value,” Jesse said.

“The rest of the time, I don’t have the opportunity to make enough money because there are enough places for people to buy and sell, and I don’t have many deals left.”

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If you want to learn more about valuable collectibles, The Sun also spoke to coin experts with collections worth over $100,000.

The Sun also spoke with TikTok users who tested over 20 different side hustles.

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