As we have discussed many times before here on DebtReviews, one of the best ways to save money and pay off your debts quicker is to sell the things you don’t need and don’t use. It can be hard to let go, but if the alternative is to sink further into debt and have your livelihood threatened, it’s easy to find the motivation.
In this guide we’ll look at the most valuable collectibles that you could have in your home right now, ones that could earn you a small fortune. If you’re not here because you’re in debt and your goal is to collect something that could be worth a lot of money, this is a good place to start.
Whisky is huge right now, so much so that producers in Scotland can’t make enough of it. This drink ticks all of the boxes to be a good collectible:
- There are varying types, including super-premium ones.
- The makers can (and often do) go out of business.
- There are limited edition lines.
- It takes years to make a good one and the market can’t be flooded instantly.
- There is a huge boom in Japan and China.
Scotch tends to do better than Irish and single malt is always better than blended. Japanese whisky also has a place in the market, but bourbon is not aged as much, nor is there as much demand, so it’s not as in demand by collectors.
And one of the best things about whisky is that most owners drink it, so a limited run only becomes more limited in time.
Comic books are one of the first things that people think of when it comes to hobbies that make for good collectibles. The problem is, these days it is very hard to find a comic that will be worth a fortune in the future. They are mass produced, much more so than they used to be, and the days of early number Action Comics selling for thousands are long gone.
The golden rules of collecting are:
- Keep them in good condition.
- Look for early editions of new superheroes.
- Look for limited editions and small print runs.
- First appearances of superheroes that go on to feature in their own comics can be valuable.
Any old coin won’t do, but really old coins that are made of precious metals will. There is a growing market for fancy coins that are minted in gold or silver and branded with pop culture illustrations. But as great as these look, they can’t quite come close to classic old coins, such as Silver/Gold Eagles, and pre-1920s European silver coins.
Anything that is old and has a high silver/gold content can be bought without a high mark-up and will keep its value. If you have a stash of old coins somewhere then it may be worth getting them checked over.
One of the quickest checks you can do to determine if they are worth anything is to look at the color. If they are bronze or copper, there’s little chance they will be worth something. If they are silver colored and at least half a century old, then they could be worth something. Unless you have something incredibly rare then it’s unlikely that you’ll make a huge amount from a single coin, but a small coin could have a few dollars worth of silver and a few dollars more in numismatic value. If you have a whole box of them, then it’s payday!
You could be forgiven for thinking that stamp collecting has died a death, but if anything it has just gone into hiding. Think about it this way: there exists a generation of people above the age of 30 who grew up sending letters and using stamps and are now witnessing the death of snail mail.
In five to ten years, they will be the ones leading the increased demand for stamps, and they will be followed by younger generations who see them as a novelty that didn’t really exist during their lifetimes. It seems odd to suggest now as stamps are still a thing, but they could be gone very quickly and when that happens rare stamps will be worth a lot more.
5. Board Games
Everyone has a few old board games gathering dust in the basement or attic. In years gone they have been useless, worth nothing more than a few cents and often given away to charity. But there is an increased demand for board games and the rarer it is, the higher than demand is.
This is especially true of new board games that were born on crowd funding sites and have been crafted with a great deal of care and attention.
6. Trading Cards
Baseball cards are the classic trading cards for collectors, but this industry extends to many other card games, including Pokemon, Magic the Gathering and more. As the world makes the change to virtual card games like Hearthstone, these cards will continue to grow in value. Of course, any old deck won’t do and it’s important to stick with limited editions sets and rare cards.
If you have them already, get them appraised—you could be sitting on a fortune. At the very least you should be looking through your childhood collections and seeing if there is anything rare or special.
7. Action Figures
These can be worth a lot of money if you have them, but it’s not a great item to start collecting. The market has been flooded and a lot are being mass produced in China. However, if you have an action figure in good condition from 20+ years ago then you could have something very valuable on your hands.
Star Wars figures still region supreme, but there is also a big market for superhero figures and horror movie figures.
First edition books can be worth a lot of money if they are old and were printed in small runs, but it doesn’t need to be a first edition to be worth something. It can be signed, slipcovered, illustrated, or bound in a unique way. Just be cautious if you’re buying these books today to sell in the future, as there are a lot of so-called “collectibles” that are priced so high at the point of manufacture and printed in such large runs that they will never make a profit.
As the world moves toward cheap, mass produced electronics and accessories, good quality watches become rare and more sought-after. If you have a vintage watch in good condition than you could cash in on this. Big brands like Omega, Rolex and Patek Philippe are especially valuable and may even increase in value over time, which is very rare for a watch.
10. Lego Sets
Lego sets are big business. In the past they have been produced in limited numbers as promotional items for TV shows, movies, and more. One of the most famous was based on the Millennium Falcon and sold for huge amounts of money.
If you have something like this in its original box, you’re good to go. If not, you may still be okay as long as you have all of the original pieces and additional leaflets and accessories that came in the box.
11. Movie and Music Posters
Got an original poster from a classic film? You could be sitting on a goldmine. There has been a booming demand for posters showcasing cult hits, and the same is true for posters that advertise classic music festivals and shows.
12. Art and Art Prints
Art is as valuable as ever, but the art world has changed and in most cases it has changed for the better. Artists are now promoting their work online, handing out limited edition prints to the first “x” amount of followers that buy them, selling to the first bidder, and announcing one-off sales that only followers will see.
Art and art prints go very quickly and very cheaply this way, and if you have ever picked up something in the past through this method then there is a good chance it’s worth a lot more money now. Of course, the value will depend on how popular the artist is, so if you’ve been sitting on something for a few years then first check to see how big they have become.