How to Price Old Records

Updated April 17, 2017

Believe it or not, your parents and grandparents once listened to music on large vinyl discs called records. You may have come across some of these while going through your attic or storage room in the basement. Many of these old records aren't worth much, but there are some rare records that could be worth hundreds or even thousands. Learn how to price old records and see how much they're worth by following these steps.

Find some applicable price guides. Price guides are the best way to determine the price of old records, because they usually give prices based on condition and rarity. Hobby shops might have a variety of price guides for collectibles, but you can also check with music shops in your area and at your local library. You can also find price guides online.

Go online and check various auction sites. When you visit auction websites like eBay, you may find old records identical or similar to the ones you have. By doing this, you can see the prices that other people are putting on their records. You can also see if anybody is bidding on them to determine if there is even a demand.

Visit the record shops in your area with the records you want to sell. These shops are often operated by the owner or someone else who has a passion for collectable records, so they usually have more knowledge than the average person. They can even tell you if there is a demand for your old records and places where you can sell them for top prices.

Determine the quality of your old records in order to price them. Scratches on the records will make them nearly worthless. Also, if you don't have the paper sleeves or the record jacket, that is going to greatly reduce the price. If you find old records, make sure to keep them as intact as possible to get the most money for them when you want to sell them.

Research the rarity of your old records. If you have a Beatles album that was reissued instead of a first press, it will only be worth a small amount (if that much). Finding this information takes a knowledgeable person, so ask an expert if you don’t know how to do this.

Subscribe to record collecting magazines like Goldmine and Record Collector. People often place ads in the classified section for old records so you can see how much they are selling for. Once you determine the price of your old records, you can even consider selling your records in the same ads.


Before listing your records for sale, clean them up and make sure they look their best. It's the best way to get the most money for them. You can almost always find a demand for your old records if you look hard enough and if they are rare enough. Consider asking a local dealer to sell your old records on consignment. That way, you both benefit from the sale and you don't have to do any of the work.


Keep your old records away from extreme heat, sunlight and cold to keep them in optimum playing condition. Don't misrepresent your records when trying to sell them. Do your research and be honest about them to avoid being accused of fraud and other complications.

Things You'll Need

  • Collectable catalogues
  • Old records
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About the Author

Chad Hagy is based in southern California and he has been a full-time freelance writer since 2006. He has a Bachelor of Arts in English with a specialization in writing from the University of Michigan and his articles have been published on several prominent websites including eHow and others.