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You Can Own a Fraction of a Warhol. But Should You?

Dozens of fractional ownership companies promise returns on collectibles. It’s a case of figuring out which make sense.

Banksy’s Mona Lisa, created in 2000.
Photographer: Guy Bell/Shutterstock/Shutterstock

Jonathan Sharpe, a 25 year-old accountant in Greensboro, N.C., never thought of himself as a “baseball guy,” but when he saw a 1909 Honus Wagner T206 baseball card valued at $520,000, he decided to buy it.

Not all of it, though. The card was being issued through the fractional ownership collectibles site Rally Rd.—there were 10,000 shares valued at $52 apiece. “I thought it was a good idea,” Sharpe says. “They broke it down into enough shares that it was affordable.” He had the Rally Rd. app open when the card listed and bought a single share; less than 20 minutes later, every single share had sold. “It was insane,” he says.