I thought of writing this guide because it appears that a lot of people out there think their old records are worth a lot of money purely for the reason that they are old. Sadly, this is not always the case.
Back in the 50s, 60s 70s and, to a degree, the 80s, records sold in huge quantities. People did not have the choice of computer games, DVDs, iPads, iPods etc to spend their money on. Records were pretty much all there was, with cassettes and 8-track players in the minority.
To sum it up in a nutshell, there are a lot of records around. And when there’s a lot of something, it drives the price down.
So what makes a record worth a lot of money? Well first of all, it needs to be in great condition. A record covered in dirt or scratches which jumps, clicks and pops whilst playing is never going to be worth much. There are exceptions but a record in poor condition would have to be stupidly rare or of significant historical or cultural importance to be worth something.
What real collectors want and what they pay top money for are original records in mint condition. That means records that look and play like new. And that goes for the covers too. Ripped and written on sleeves demolish values. So the David Cassidy album you once scribbled love hearts all over almost certainly holds no more financial value than that of a Cadbury’s Curly Wurly.
PS If there are any errors, please get in touch. i rattled through this in the haze of a drunken hour.