Out with the old, in with the new. Spring is right around the corner, and you know what that means. In a few short months, it’ll be time for spring cleaning. Before you start decluttering and organizing your home, however, keep in mind what you should donate to Goodwill, and what you shouldn’t. Figuring out the difference could put some extra cash in your pocket.
Those old items collecting dust in your home can actually be worth more than you think. A lot more. So, before you go throwing away or donating everything from your parent’s attic, check to see if you might be able to make a couple hundred, or even thousand, dollars off of what you find. Everything from vintage cookware to old-school gaming consoles can be worth more than you might imagine.
Seven old things in your home worth a fortune
Check out these seven old items in your home that could potentially be worth a lot of money.
One place to look for hidden household treasures is your kitchen. One common brand that can be worth quite a bit of money, and has a following of dedicated collectors, is Pyrex. Since it’s so common, not every piece of Pyrex will be worth money, but certain vintage styles can sell for hundreds to thousands of dollars online. This Vintage Pyrex Pink 2 Quart Casserole dish With Cover sold on eBay for $2,275.
2. Vintage toys
Have your kids grown up and moved away? If you’ve managed to keep any of their old toys for some reason or another, you could be in luck. Remember Furbys? If you have one of the talking toys, it can be sold for anywhere from $95 to over $200 (although some have sold for much more), depending on which one you have. (I still have my rare Royal Furby from when I was a kid, but I’ll be holding on to it for sentimental value.)
If you own any Polly Pocket toys and accessories, specifically those made in the 90s (from the pre-Mattel days), you could make several hundred dollars. This Vintage Polly Pocket Children’s Hospital from 1995 sold on eBay for approximately $132.87, and this Polly Pocket 1992 Party Time Birthday Stamper complete set sold for a shocking $1,049.16. And don’t forget about Pokemon cards. Recently, this 1999 Pokemon Base Set Charizard Holo Rare Vintage Card sold for around $626.86.
3. VHS tapes
MoneyWeek found that collectors are driving up demand for VHS tapes, with some willing to pay as much as $25k for unopened, packaged videotapes. Some of the most coveted VHS tapes that sell for a high price include Star Wars, The Goonies, Superman and Rambo.
Kiplinger has some advice to determine whether your old VHS tapes could be worth thousands, according to an article from October 2023. Here's what's valuable:
- Blockbuster films from the late 1970s - 1980s, released on VHS prior to the 1990s
- 1980s horror films — A 1981 Halloween original first print VHS is currently selling for $127.20 on Etsy, and a sealed 1990 first release Friday The 13th Part VIII VHS is currently selling for $316.94.
- Sealed tapes with a studio watermark
- Some early Disney copies that were released in the early to mid-1980s like Tron, The Black Hole and collections of early Disney cartoon shorts. A brief search on Etsy found a vintage factory sealed VHS of Walt Disney's Fantasia being sold for $300.
4. Old-school video games
You’d be surprised just how much certain video games go for online. Certain collectors will pay hundreds, even thousands, for rare retro games. So dust off your old gaming console and take a look at which games you may have — they could be worth a good chunk of change.
One of the rarest games, Little Samson for the Nintendo Entertainment System (NES) has sold for over $2,000 on eBay. Other titles that earn a lot include Mario Kart 64 for Nintendo 64 (sold for $450), Super Mario 64 for Nintendo 64 (sold for $2,513.69), Futurama for Microsoft Xbox, 2003 (sold for $199.99) and Chrono Trigger for Super Nintendo Entertainment System, 1995 (sold for $175). However, many games for a variety of different consoles can be worth more than you might think, so do a little research before bringing your old games in to your local GameStop.
5. Vinyl records
Music fans — those old LPs you have lying around could be worth a lot of money, depending on the artist, album and release date. In fact, in the UK, our sister brand MoneyWeek released a report on 10 vinyl records worth up to £10,000, which included The Beatles - Please Please Me, which sells for around £6,000, and Led Zeppelin - Led Zeppelin, which sold for £7,100 in 2013.
6. Boy Scout memorabilia
Were you a Boy Scout back in the day? You likely kept several of those old badges and pins around for sentimental reasons without knowing they could be worth several hundred dollars. For example, this collection of vintage Boy Scout medals, patches and rings sold for $240, and this 1990s Boy Scouts eagle rank medal sold for $199.99.
Older, rarer memorabilia can sell for much, much more. This 1920s Boy Scout Eagle Scout medal sold on eBay for $2,826.00, and this collection of 1930's Boy Scouts Eagle Scout medal, merit patches and pins sold for $4,275.
7. Vintage newspapers and magazines
If you have any old magazines or newspapers lying around, before you recycle them, check to see what they're worth. Limited edition publications, or ones centered on major popular culture or historic events are sought after collectors items. According to Woman's World, vintage magazines that once sold for around $1 are now selling for $20, $30, or even $50 on sites like eBay.
LuckyBuckEyeCollectibles, one of eBay's most reputable sellers, specializes in vintage ephemera, selling a variety of titles including New Yorker, LIFE, TIME, Saturday Evening Post, Vogue and Cosmopolitan. Currently, he's selling a 1961 January TV Radio Mirror Magazine with Dick Clark Front Cover for $74.99 and a 1952 January 21 LIFE Magazine with Dwight Eisenhower Cover for $39.99.
Erin pairs personal experience with research and is passionate about sharing personal finance advice with others. Previously, she was a freelancer focusing on the credit card side of finance, but has branched out since then to cover other aspects of personal finance. Erin is well-versed in traditional media with reporting, interviewing and research, as well as using graphic design and video and audio storytelling to share with her readers.
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