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How to find the value of vinyl records

Updated February 21, 2017

Perhaps you've got a collection of vinyl records that you've steadily built over time, or maybe you have recently come into an inheritance. In any case, learning the value of these records may help you decide whether you would like to keep them, sell them, or give them away. While books and guides are still printed that address this area, searching online will usually find you the most current information, because websites can be updated much more quickly than printed guides.

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  1. Check the Vinyl Records Collectors Guide (VRCG) if you believe your vinyl records are truly rare or scarce. The difference between rarity and scarcity, as the VRCG defines it, is that rare records have a market. With scarce records, there may not be many of a particular pressing in existence--but demand does not exist, either.

  2. Check vinyl auction aggregator sites such as Music Price Guide and PopSike to see what other people have been obtaining for the same records you have. These sites gather information on completed auctions from various websites (including eBay) and aggregate it into one centralised area for easy use.

  3. Examine your own vinyl records carefully and be prepared to be honest with yourself about their condition. Even if the outer jacket or inner sleeve has a small bent corner from shelf wear that would not bother you as a buyer, it will matter to someone else in the record collector world.

  4. Check your vinyl records for record company catalogue numbers, country, and date of issue. Broadly speaking, original pressings are worth more than reissues. If you are ever in doubt about where and when something was pressed, finding a record company catalogue number and searching it online should help to answer your questions.

  5. Visit your local record shops and ask them to appraise your vinyl records. In many cases, you will probably be told that your vinyl records are not worth as much as you may have found online. Since you had the foresight to do some homework online, you may be able to bring this up and negotiate with your local record store, if you are interested in selling your records.

  6. Tip

    Always consider the original way in which your records were released. In some cases, records may have been packaged with bonus inserts, stickers, or even other records. Some records may also have been issued on different coloured vinyl, and those different colours may command very different prices. Be aware of this when you are doing your research. Many Japanese and European vinyl pressings may also have come with fancier packaging than their British or US counterparts, and may command different prices as well.

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Things You'll Need

  • Vinyl records

About the Author

Amrita Chuasiriporn is a professional cook, baker and writer who has written for several online publications, including Chef's Blade, CraftyCrafty and others. Additionally, Chuasiriporn is a regular contributor to online automotive enthusiast publication CarEnvy.ca. Chuasiriporn holds an A.A.S. in culinary arts, as well as a B.A. in Spanish language and literature.

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