Predictions on Discontinuing Sets and their Secondary Market Value

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  • HanzoHanzo VAMember Posts: 607
    So the theory is they won't sell as many sets since the speculators won't be stocking up on them?  Are there really that many resellers out there (in the grand scheme of Lego's customer base)?.  I find that hard to believe.
  • CCCCCC UKMember Posts: 17,789
    Hanzo said:
    So the theory is they won't sell as many sets since the speculators won't be stocking up on them?  Are there really that many resellers out there (in the grand scheme of Lego's customer base)?.  I find that hard to believe.
    For kid sets, cheap sets, huge volume sets - no, resellers are a minor player. But for large expensive AFOL focussed ones, more significant. 
    pharmjoddougts
  • HanzoHanzo VAMember Posts: 607
    CCC said:
    Hanzo said:
    So the theory is they won't sell as many sets since the speculators won't be stocking up on them?  Are there really that many resellers out there (in the grand scheme of Lego's customer base)?.  I find that hard to believe.
    For kid sets, cheap sets, huge volume sets - no, resellers are a minor player. But for large expensive AFOL focussed ones, more significant. 
    Has a sales breakdown ever been seen?  Say a sub $150 range versus $150+?  I'd be curious to see what percentage of sales their more display/adult minded products account for.
  • CCCCCC UKMember Posts: 17,789
    Hanzo said:
    CCC said:
    Hanzo said:
    So the theory is they won't sell as many sets since the speculators won't be stocking up on them?  Are there really that many resellers out there (in the grand scheme of Lego's customer base)?.  I find that hard to believe.
    For kid sets, cheap sets, huge volume sets - no, resellers are a minor player. But for large expensive AFOL focussed ones, more significant. 
    Has a sales breakdown ever been seen?  Say a sub $150 range versus $150+?  I'd be curious to see what percentage of sales their more display/adult minded products account for.
    No, they don't release that sort of data. They did once allow stock numbers to be harvested from their website in Europe. 
  • prevereprevere North of Bellville, East of Heartlake, South of Bricksburg, West of Ninjago City Member Posts: 2,876
    CCC said:
    Hanzo said:
    So the theory is they won't sell as many sets since the speculators won't be stocking up on them?  Are there really that many resellers out there (in the grand scheme of Lego's customer base)?.  I find that hard to believe.
    For kid sets, cheap sets, huge volume sets - no, resellers are a minor player. But for large expensive AFOL focussed ones, more significant. 
    This is of course what many of us believe. But it is still speculation. We see the end result (additional discounts on exclusives, tags like "retiring soon"), and try to go backwards in the equation to piece it together. 
    SumoLegopharmjod
  • SumoLegoSumoLego New YorkMember Posts: 11,913
    Hanzo said:
    Has a sales breakdown ever been seen?  Say a sub $150 range versus $150+?  I'd be curious to see what percentage of sales their more display/adult minded products account for.
    We could only wish for such information!
  • CCCCCC UKMember Posts: 17,789
    prevere said:
    CCC said:
    Hanzo said:
    So the theory is they won't sell as many sets since the speculators won't be stocking up on them?  Are there really that many resellers out there (in the grand scheme of Lego's customer base)?.  I find that hard to believe.
    For kid sets, cheap sets, huge volume sets - no, resellers are a minor player. But for large expensive AFOL focussed ones, more significant. 
    This is of course what many of us believe. But it is still speculation. We see the end result (additional discounts on exclusives, tags like "retiring soon"), and try to go backwards in the equation to piece it together. 
    Yes, the percentage of sales going to resellers is of course speculation, in either price range. Although I strongly believe that resellers are more significant when it comes to the larger sets than for the smaller sets (probably discounting CMF, as these are an easy sell compared to other small boxed sets).
  • AanchirAanchir United StatesMember Posts: 2,803
    jcb193 said:
    I think this will certainly be a death knell for your casual collector. Those of us that might have "bought one for the kids and one for the shelf," will probably scale back.  One once knew that in a year or two you could pay for the one you opened with the one you kept.    

    I think the easy money in this hobby disappeared in 2012-2013.  Since then, you really needed to nail your picks, or get them at a deep discount to make easy money.  It was fun while it lasted.

    Be curious how much business Lego gains from the re-releases, versus what they lose from the "casual investor." I know I won't be picking up multiples of any sets for awhile.

    (Hint Hint: if a lot of people agree with me, then some of you might do well 10yrs from now by scooping up excess inventory during the next Lego lull) :)

    Good luck!!!
    I'd say the average "casual collector" is probably an 8 to 12 year old kid who buys City, Friends, or Ninjago sets for their own use. If they or their parents are buying them with the expectation that they can sell them back for more than they paid, they probably don't have a very clear idea of what the aftermarket is like to begin with. At best, though, they probably have a vague idea that the sets will hold their value a little better than other toys, which is probably true, because many toys are more likely to depreciate in value over time.

    If people are in fact buying more sets to resell on the secondary market than there are people who would've bought those same sets on the primary market given the opportunity, then that's the definition of a bubble and it's better for that illusion to be dispelled sooner rather than later. Overall, though, I think we AFOLs vastly overestimate how many LEGO buyers think like us and make purchasing decisions accordingly, and how many just think "wow, what a cool toy! I want one!"
    LyichirIstokgstluxdatsunrobbieBumblepantsdmcc0OnebricktoomanysnowhitieMegtheCat
  • CCCCCC UKMember Posts: 17,789
    Aanchir said:

    I'd say the average "casual collector" is probably an 8 to 12 year old kid who buys City, Friends, or Ninjago sets for their own use.
    They aren't collectors. They are consumers. At least, that was what I was told back in the day when I said I opened my sets ... :-)

  • alaskaguyalaskaguy Member Posts: 333
    Aanchir said:
    jcb193 said:
    Overall, though, I think we AFOLs vastly overestimate how many LEGO buyers think like us and make purchasing decisions accordingly, and how many just think "wow, what a cool toy! I want one!"
    I think you are absolutely correct.  The typical parent is not buying $200+ sets (or maybe even $100 sets) for their kid to play with, and the typical kid isn't buying them either.
  • CCCCCC UKMember Posts: 17,789
    alaskaguy said:
    I think you are absolutely correct.  The typical parent is not buying $200+ sets (or maybe even $100 sets) for their kid to play with, and the typical kid isn't buying them either.
    The typical parent isn't - but then the typical parent doesn't spend $200+ on many things for kids to play with. However, that doesn't mean no parents are. Classic TV Batman batcave, the Death Star, Ewok Village, Disney Castle, Helicarrier, Ninjago City, Mindstorms, Sea Cow, the Minecraft cave thing, the Simpsons sets, ... I know of families that have bought such sets for kids, especially families where the kids are highly into lego and want their main present to be a big lego set.
  • alaskaguyalaskaguy Member Posts: 333
    I know a girl who got a Porsche as a HS graduation present.  She drove it to community college.

    I don't think Porsche views her parents as their target customer.
    Jackad7
  • LyichirLyichir United StatesMember Posts: 723
    alaskaguy said:
    I know a girl who got a Porsche as a HS graduation present.  She drove it to community college.

    I don't think Porsche views her parents as their target customer.
    Porsche isn't a toy company. ;)
  • alaskaguyalaskaguy Member Posts: 333
    Lyichir said:
    Porsche isn't a toy company. ;)
    Sure it is. They make toys for big boys (:
    KerreTXLegoguyM_Boss
  • ReesesPiecesReesesPieces Member Posts: 814
    alaskaguy said:I
    Lyichir said:
    Porsche isn't a toy company. ;)
    Sure it is. They make toys for big boys (:
    so....kinda like lego, huh?
  • alaskaguyalaskaguy Member Posts: 333
    alaskaguy said:I
    Lyichir said:
    Porsche isn't a toy company. ;)
    Sure it is. They make toys for big boys (:
    so....kinda like lego, huh?
    Yeah..no.
  • Rainstorm26Rainstorm26 Chicago Burbs USA (and sometimes Ireland)Member Posts: 1,004
    Has anyone looked at the #10188 price guide on Bricklink?  I was just stunned at the number of sets and some of the prices.  I'm guessing a lot of those sets will be hanging around a long time unsold.
    vwong19
  • CCCCCC UKMember Posts: 17,789
    If you look at the date they were listed many of those will have been put on BL before the new one came out.
  • vwong19vwong19 San DiegoMember Posts: 1,174
    Has anyone looked at the #10188 price guide on Bricklink?  I was just stunned at the number of sets and some of the prices.  I'm guessing a lot of those sets will be hanging around a long time unsold.
    I have one listed there new on the first page and have dropped the price several times with only a few inquiries. The set is expensive to ship. The only reason I have it listed relatively low is because of discounts buying it years ago. Yet another set that I had no space for display and the newer version is better IMO. I like the optimism of some of the sellers there...
  • AanchirAanchir United StatesMember Posts: 2,803
    CCC said:
    Aanchir said:

    I'd say the average "casual collector" is probably an 8 to 12 year old kid who buys City, Friends, or Ninjago sets for their own use.
    They aren't collectors. They are consumers. At least, that was what I was told back in the day when I said I opened my sets ... :-)

    It's interesting to me how the word "collector" has different connotations for different people. Like, as a kid, I collected Pokémon cards. Even though I opened and played with my cards, and often didn't do a great job keeping them in good shape, I had a binder where I kept track of which ones I owned from each series. I rarely had any expectation of completing a series, but I enjoyed seeing how many I could get. I would've considered myself a "collector".

    In the LEGO community, though, I often see comments that make it sound like to be a collector you have to be trying to get everything in a certain category, and putting a lot of stock in the resale value of your collection. This comes up a lot whenever there's something that not everybody has access to, like a Comic-Con or Inside Tour exclusive set/fig/part or a "chase" figure like Mr. Gold.

    CCC said:
    alaskaguy said:
    I think you are absolutely correct.  The typical parent is not buying $200+ sets (or maybe even $100 sets) for their kid to play with, and the typical kid isn't buying them either.
    The typical parent isn't - but then the typical parent doesn't spend $200+ on many things for kids to play with. However, that doesn't mean no parents are. Classic TV Batman batcave, the Death Star, Ewok Village, Disney Castle, Helicarrier, Ninjago City, Mindstorms, Sea Cow, the Minecraft cave thing, the Simpsons sets, ... I know of families that have bought such sets for kids, especially families where the kids are highly into lego and want their main present to be a big lego set.
    Yeah, while the typical parent won't necessarily be buying $100+ sets for their kids, that's not to say they're outside the reach of kids and parents. A lot of parents spend a lot of money on their kids. Just look at the price of video game consoles! A lot of the big $150+ exclusives are definitely more geared towards teens and adults, but not all of them — the Minecraft Village had an 8+ recommended age range.

    Like video game consoles, I feel like the pricier sets are probably most palatable to parents who either plan to enjoy them with their child or have multiple children who can enjoy them together.
  • Farmer_JohnFarmer_John USA - 4,035 Miles from 62 West Wallaby St., Wigan, Lancashire, UKMember Posts: 2,404
    edited November 2017
    Women of NASA #21312 is now out of stock at LEGO. Since they build so many sets up initially, I wonder if there will even be a second run. It's probably even odds on another run.
  • prevereprevere North of Bellville, East of Heartlake, South of Bricksburg, West of Ninjago City Member Posts: 2,876
    ^Mars Rover or Exo-Suit? My money is on Exo-Suit. Lego has not be short-changing the life of many sets these days.
    SumoLego
  • stevemackstevemack 1567km Drive From BillundMember Posts: 894
    It's an Ideas set, it has a shelf life of ~18 months
  • Farmer_JohnFarmer_John USA - 4,035 Miles from 62 West Wallaby St., Wigan, Lancashire, UKMember Posts: 2,404
    Yeah...like research institute.
  • Penkid11Penkid11 Member Posts: 781
    Yeah...like research institute.
    That was before LEGO lifted the rule that all LEGO Ideas sets were only going to have 10,000 sets produced.

    This ended with the Exo Suit, after it's insane demand remained in the same vein as the Research Institute (which retired just short of this change).
  • alaskaguyalaskaguy Member Posts: 333
    Penkid11 said:
    This ended with the Exo Suit, after it's insane demand remained in the same vein as the Research Institute (which retired just short of this change).
    Exo Suit had a lot of demand??

    I'm surprised to hear that.  It seemed like there were plenty available, and it's STILL available relatively cheaply ($38 on Amazon right now, and only $30 @ other places).


  • CCCCCC UKMember Posts: 17,789
    alaskaguy said:
    Penkid11 said:
    This ended with the Exo Suit, after it's insane demand remained in the same vein as the Research Institute (which retired just short of this change).
    Exo Suit had a lot of demand??

    Yes, it was OOS for a while. Then they restocked ...
    pharmjod
  • LegoTTLegoTT Member Posts: 479
    I was just considering building a train layout, and thought about the train station (#600050) that I ordered last summer for $40 from Amazon. It’s still sitting in the shipping box because I never opened it. Those suckers are worth $80+ now. Weird. 
  • Farmer_JohnFarmer_John USA - 4,035 Miles from 62 West Wallaby St., Wigan, Lancashire, UKMember Posts: 2,404
    Sorry...I just don't see an overwhelming interest or demand for the Women of NASA set. It certainly didn't sell out immediately like most other Ideas sets. The Research Institute was initially under-produced, which I believe led to its demand. The Exo Suit is another animal, and was a lot more popular...to the point TLG kept producing it.
  • monstblitzmonstblitz Alexandria, VAMember Posts: 591
    It seems like they anticipated the same demand for Women of NASA that they saw with Saturn V.  My local Lego stores are flooded with them, or at least they were last weekend.  All the deal websites are constantly triggering my deal alerts that just about every single major retailer has it in stock.  I keep seeing it, and I keep thinking to myself, "Meh." 
  • CCCCCC UKMember Posts: 17,789
    Sorry...I just don't see an overwhelming interest or demand for the Women of NASA set. It certainly didn't sell out immediately like most other Ideas sets. The Research Institute was initially under-produced, which I believe led to its demand.
    I think it was the content that lead to the demand for RI - it was highly advertised by press rather than by lego and it did seem to be bought by non-lego as well as lego fans. It did seem to be short stocked at the start, but then relatively easy to get hold of as more stock came into stores. It also appears to have reasonable demand still -  it is about double RRP, and sold just over 100 times worldwide in six months, and this beats most other Ideas sets of the same timeframe except GB Ecto-1 but then that is sitting at not much above RRP which might explain the higher volume of sales.

    I imagine LEGO decided to have higher stocks of Women of NASA at the release date to cope with demand. It might also be that they learnt to shift stock from Europe to the US to cope with local demand - things like the Mars Rover took three months to sell out in the UK, compared to days in the US. Women of NASA has been constantly available in the UK since release.

  • PapaBearPapaBear East CoastMember Posts: 395
    None of the Ideas sets compares to the initial Minecraft demand.  However, the demand for it is really pathetic now.
  • LyichirLyichir United StatesMember Posts: 723
    PapaBear said:
    None of the Ideas sets compares to the initial Minecraft demand.  However, the demand for it is really pathetic now.
    Is it? Despite most AFOLs' indifference, I'm pretty sure Minecraft has been cited as a top-selling theme in a number of annual reports, including recent ones. Even if the demand isn't where it was back then, it's clearly been enough to sustain a full theme—much more than any other Ideas set can boast.
  • Penkid11Penkid11 Member Posts: 781
    edited November 2017
    alaskaguy said:
    Penkid11 said:
    This ended with the Exo Suit, after it's insane demand remained in the same vein as the Research Institute (which retired just short of this change).
    Exo Suit had a lot of demand??

    I'm surprised to hear that.  It seemed like there were plenty available, and it's STILL available relatively cheaply ($38 on Amazon right now, and only $30 @ other places).


    This was when LEGO learned of the two-edged sword that is demand.

    It took them too long to meet the Exo-Suit's demand. They produced far more than they needed, but no one was around to purchase. The resale market for it crashed, and LEGO put it on sale.

    I would also be brave enough to say that the Porsche was the next set to follow suit.
  • PapaBearPapaBear East CoastMember Posts: 395
    Lyichir said:
    PapaBear said:
    None of the Ideas sets compares to the initial Minecraft demand.  However, the demand for it is really pathetic now.
    Is it? Despite most AFOLs' indifference, I'm pretty sure Minecraft has been cited as a top-selling theme in a number of annual reports, including recent ones. Even if the demand isn't where it was back then, it's clearly been enough to sustain a full theme—much more than any other Ideas set can boast.
    Sorry, I was talking specifically about the $35 #21102 set, not the Minecraft theme in general.
    pharmjod
  • SumoLegoSumoLego New YorkMember Posts: 11,913
    CCC said:
    alaskaguy said:
    Exo Suit had a lot of demand??
    Yes, it was OOS for a while. Then they restocked ...
    And then it was 'de-commissioned' for the better part of six months before the stock finally ran out.
  • CCCCCC UKMember Posts: 17,789
    SumoLego said:
    CCC said:
    alaskaguy said:
    Exo Suit had a lot of demand??
    Yes, it was OOS for a while. Then they restocked ...
    And then it was 'de-commissioned' for the better part of six months before the stock finally ran out.
    Yes, it was still for sale months after the decommissioning date that was set.

    PapaBear said:
    Lyichir said:
    PapaBear said:
    None of the Ideas sets compares to the initial Minecraft demand.  However, the demand for it is really pathetic now.
    Is it? Despite most AFOLs' indifference, I'm pretty sure Minecraft has been cited as a top-selling theme in a number of annual reports, including recent ones. Even if the demand isn't where it was back then, it's clearly been enough to sustain a full theme—much more than any other Ideas set can boast.
    Sorry, I was talking specifically about the $35 #21102 set, not the Minecraft theme in general.

    Yes, the theme as a whole has obviously been popular, especially since they starting doing it minfiig scale with minifigs included. The original ones look quite pathetic in contrast now. But it was a great (re)seller at the time, being the first one. And possibly the set that lego took a lot of flack for over being out of stock and quick flip reselling at christmas.
  • stevemackstevemack 1567km Drive From BillundMember Posts: 894
    Massive update on the EU lego website of retiring sets.

    UCS Tie fighter is going.  Assault on Hoth is going.

    200 or so in total now listed as retiring soon!  Including #75105 Falcon finally
  • SumoLegoSumoLego New YorkMember Posts: 11,913
    I suppose we should expect a spoiler-filled new MF for Christmas 2018...
  • FizyxFizyx ColoradoMember Posts: 779
    SumoLego said:
    I suppose we should expect a spoiler-filled new MF for Christmas 2018...
    I've heard it may include a lot of blue (the ship, not necessarily the inevitable set, although I'm quite sure it will follow course) and I'm not entirely sure how I feel about that.
  • ReesesPiecesReesesPieces Member Posts: 814
    Will be weird to have a MF without a Han that comes with it.
  • FollowsCloselyFollowsClosely Member Posts: 949
    LEGOFan2
  • willobee498willobee498 CanadalandMember Posts: 349
    edited December 2017
    Han went a bit nuts with a spray can.

    Also, this photo reminds me of a question I have had for a long time. The grime/soot trails from the six vents on the top rear of the Falcon... shouldn't the trails go straight back, rather than fanning out as if coming from the center? 
  • PapaBearPapaBear East CoastMember Posts: 395
    edited December 2017
    A bunch of kids in my family wanted LEGO bricks for Christmas and they were into Disney.  They chose Ariel's Palace #41063-1 which I noticed has done quite well.  Anyone think the other Disney castles/palaces like #41067-1 or #41148-1 will do well?
  • CCCCCC UKMember Posts: 17,789
    ^ I wouldn't invest in either Cinderella or Frozen ones. They seem to be the X-wings and MFs of the Princess line. 
    SumoLegoFollowsCloselyprevereFizyx
  • JRLJRL UKMember Posts: 86
    I note the Simpsons House is now retired and subsequently my local Lego Store was cleaned out of copies (obviously). It was out for what seemed to be an absolute age. Is that ever likely to be a valuable set?
  • PapaBearPapaBear East CoastMember Posts: 395
    IMO The Simpsons House is a beautiful and great set to build.  Amazon still has them, but they are going for $250 on ebay.  That is a really good sign.  I have a bunch for resale, but won't be buying anymore.  I think it will do fairly well.  I don't know if a set being out for a long time means that it won't do well.  Most resellers are turned off by sets that have been out for a long time, so there may be no rush to buy up the last copies.
  • MAGNINOMINISUMBRAMAGNINOMINISUMBRA Member Posts: 986
    ^^ A VERY brief initial surge, followed by a drop to close or equal to RRP then a very slow climb. I personally don't see it as a set that will double in the next 5 years if ever. 
      Mind you, in the extremely unlikely event that we see a third minifig series or another D2C..expect the price to explode!
  • mustang69mustang69 North CarolinaMember Posts: 402
    edited December 2017
    My wife and I took a gamble on the Disney Castle. We have two of them still sitting in their shipping boxes hoping they will be worth something someday. Granted I believe it still has at least a year left on its life so it will be awhile before we find out.
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