With the advent of DVD and Blu-ray, VHS tapes have become obsolete. No one manufactures them anymore, and their image quality cannot hope to compete with more modern technology. Nevertheless, people still watch VHS tapes, and while you probably won’t get a lot for your used copies, you can still sell them and make a little extra money (as well as clear up space in your home). The Internet makes the process much easier than it was just a few years ago, and more old-fashioned ways to sell your tapes are available as well.
Organise your VHS tapes to get an idea of the size of your collection. If you still have a VCR, play them to see what kind of shape they’re in. Heat and time may have damaged the tapes. If a VHS tape won’t play, you shouldn’t try to sell it.
Separate any rare or valuable VHS tapes from your collection. You might be able to get much more for them than other tapes. Anything which has not yet been released on DVD or Blu-ray is probably worth more than normal VHS tapes. So are cult films, foreign films, or Disney movies in the large clamshell cases. Online sources such as eBay can give you a good base price for your VHS tapes and help you to determine which ones are valuable.
Ask a local video store if they buy used VHS tapes. Smaller, independent stores may have a program for purchasing obsolete movie formats, and those that do will take them off your hands. The bad news is that they probably won’t offer much for them. The good news is that you can often get store credit, allowing you to replace at least a few of your used tapes with newer DVD or Blu-ray versions.
Sell your VHS tapes on eBay or a similar online auction store. Half.com, a servie of eBay, specialises in VHS sales. Amazon.com offers similar services, as does Alibris. All of them allow you to make sales with a third-party moderator, to ensure that the buyer pays what he agrees to pay.
Rent a stall at a flea market or swap meet in your area. You can usually find a few such gatherings in any decent-sized community, and it doesn’t cost much to set up a booth. Swap meets have the advantage of reaching a number of bargain hunters who will pay cash for your VHS tapes. You also don’t have to worry about shipping the tapes anywhere once they’re sold.
If possible, considering selling your VHS tapes in bulk. You might not get quite as much as you would by selling them individually, but you can get rid of all of them at once. Collectors looking for a specific tape might be willing to pay for a bulk collection containing it, thus making it easier to sell all of your tapes in a single go.
Tips and warnings
- If possible, considering selling your VHS tapes in bulk. You might not get quite as much as you would by selling them individually, but you can get rid of all of them at once. Collectors looking for a specific tape might be willing to pay for a bulk collection containing it, thus making it easier to sell all of your tapes in a single go.