Submissions 101: Declared Value Part 22 min read


One of the most common questions we get is regarding Declared Value. More specifically, “What is it?” which is almost always followed by, “What value should I enter?”

So, we put a little video together in hopes of answering those questions.


What Is Declared Value?

In short, grading fees are based on the Declared Value of the cards, which is a realistic, estimated value of what you believe the collectible is worth. This value is also important for insurance purposes, as it is used to determine what amount to insure the card for.

So what factors into this figure? Well, it’s typically based on the condition of the card. And, though you will not know the exact condition until it is graded, we do have some very helpful online resources to help you determine Declared Value. More on that next.

Determining Declared Value

We mention this URL in the video, and for good measure let’s include it in this entry. is a great online tool to help you determine the value of your card, including links to PSA’s grading standards, PhotoGrade, Price Guide and Auction Prices Realized. Familiarize yourself with PSA’s grading scale and use PSA Photograde to help you approximate your card’s condition. Then, use the pricing resources to gauge, approximately, what cards in that condition are valued at. Once you have a figure in mind, enter that in the designated field on the submission form.

For example, if I have a raw 2011 Topps Update Mike Trout which I believe to be in a condition of PSA 8, I’d check the PSA Price Guide for the value of that card in that grade. Then, I’d use that figure as my Declared Value.

However, for a quick shortcut, you can also use the amount you purchased the card for as the Declared Value. Say I bought the Trout for $100 on eBay – and to me, that card is worth $100 – then I’d use that figure.

That pretty much sums it up. If you have any questions, or want to see another topic covered in our Submissions 101 series, let us know in the comments.

Posted by Ryan Gaeta

Ryan is a sports fan and Non-Sports aficionado, who is still tormented by the fact he owned the entire 1st Edition run of Pokémon cards but traded them away or ruined them at one point or another.

2 thoughts on “Submissions 101: Declared Value Part 22 min read

  1. I understand the concept of declaring for insurance, cost and time; however, as I just experienced – my assumption that a card is a ten was a waste of money because it came back at a 9, which is half as valuable. If I have a card that would be worth $400 as a 9, or $4,000 as a ten, how do I decide. It’s a tremendous waste of my money to pay the greater fee since a lower grade would mean I just spent as much on grading as the card is worth….. I read that undervalued cards will be upcharge. If that’s the case, am I better off assuming all are 9s and if you think it’s a ten, you add a charge? Is that how it would work? I have a lot of cards to submit and this is a costly piece of information that I need before proceeding further. Thanks in advance .

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