As Harry Potter prepares to meet his 'Deathly Hallows', should you invest in his memorabilia?

'It all ends here...' reads the ominous tagline on the new Harry Potter film poster, as fans eagerly await the first of two final movies in the epic boy wizard franchise.

Actually it all begins here as, today, the trailer for the first film, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part One, has been newly released to the public (you can watch it above).  

Following Harry and his friends Ron and Hermione on their perilous mission to defeat the evil Voldemort, the trailer leaves no doubt that the franchise will go out with a bang.

The impact of the Harry Potter film series on popular culture can't be doubted - if you know any adolescents, chances are they have some interest in JK Rowling's epic stories.

But the question remains for collectors and investors in memorabilia: is it worth investing in Harry Potter's collectibles?

Paul certainly thinks so. As he recently wrote in his Paul says... column: "[The Harry Potter] memorabilia markets probably won't fully-mature for 10-15 years.

Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone autographed
Magic investment: a signed Harry Potter first edition

"[That's] when the children of today are set in their careers and have the disposable income to invest in their childhood passions."

What's more, evidence of the viability of Harry Potter memorabilia can already be found at today's auctions.

First edition books that would have cost just at few pounds or dollars when they were first published in 1997 are now selling for $10,000.

Better still, if one of those books is signed by author JK Rowling herself, the lucky owner could now be looking at an asset worth $25,000.

Rowling's autograph is certainly one to watch. According to the industry's PFC40 Autographs Index, the author's signature has risen by 203.8% over the past decade.

In real terms, that means that if you bought a signed Rowling book for £395 10 years ago, it could today be worth as much as £1,200. And that's for a non-first edition...

Going places: actor Daniel Radcliffe
likely has a long acting career ahead
of him

Collectors can safely bet that Harry Potter memorabilia items will continue to appreciate and proven themselves as investible assets over the next 10 years.

It's especially worth hunting out Rowling autographs accompanied by an inscription - ideally on the book which started the whole craze: 1997's Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone.

This was again proven at auction earlier this month, when a first paperback edition of Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone signed and inscribed by Rowling went under the hammer.

In this case, the inscription was especially personal as Rowling knew the family in question. It reads: "To Rowan/ I hear you are a very good judge of literature, so I want to know what you think of it!/ Lots of love Jo/ (J.K. Rowling!)".

Rowan was undoubtedly very pleased with his present, as was the seller at Lyon & Turnbull's auction. The book eventually brought £2,800, way over its £2,000 pre-sale estimate.

And it's not only JK Rowling who collectors should look out for, but also the young stars of the film franchise (which is now the highest-grossing film series of all time, with $5.4bn worldwide receipts).

The film's young stars, Daniel Radcliffe, Rupert Grint and Emma Watson, are now hugely wealthy, experienced in the ways of showbiz and will undoubtedly move onto other projects.

As their careers progress, interest in their memorabilia items - and their value on the private markets - will surely continue to thrive and grow.



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