To find out how much old vinyl records are worth, do a price comparison using the record's serial number, artist name or album name. Record owners can also use price guides or consult a record store to determine the value of their albums.
To determine the approximate value of a vinyl record, use the following steps:
- Look up the album
- Look at the condition of the record
Do a Web search on the album and compare prices offered on record websites and auction sites. Owners can use the record's serial number, which is usually etched directly onto the vinyl. This is a handy way to reference records, as it includes information such as the pressing. However, if a serial number is not present, owners can also search for the artist name, album name and pressing. First pressings are usually the most valuable, because labels tended to print fewer first pressing albums than they did in subsequent pressings.
Condition plays a very important role in record value. Even a very valuable pressing is worth little if it is in poor condition. Note any scratches on the record's surface and inspect the cover. If the record and cover are in perfect condition, it is considered "mint." "Near mint" records have some minor signs of wear-and-tear on the cover and sleeve, but have no damage to the record itself. "Very good plus" or "very good" condition indicates minor scratches. "Good" and "good plus" records have obvious signs of wear and tear, but are still playable. "Fair" and "poor" records indicate records that skip or that are so badly scratched or warped that they are not playable. These records are worth very little money.