The first step in determining a Boyds Bear's value is to find out whether the bear is part of a limited run, or is no longer in production. As retired and limited edition bears are rarer, they are often worth more. Studying the marketplace and collectors' guides is also helpful.
To find out whether the bear is mass produced and still in production, use the Archive Product Search tool on the Boyds Collection website. The site includes information about bears released before 2008, and offers several search options. Enter the bear's name and item number, or browse through various collections.
Collectors' guides specifically for Boyds Bears are available from libraries and bookstores. Once you discover how rare the bear is, research the marketplace by attending collectors' meetings and visiting stores, and check sites such as eBay. EBay allows users to view completed auctions, which is helpful for collectors who want to see how much people were willing to pay for an item.
Boyds has released many limited runs of bears over the years, including some models to raise money for charity. Check the bear's original retail price on the Boyds website, then compare it to complete online auctions to calculate how much the value has increased.