Get ahead of the crowd with Premium
Register Forgot password

Make money selling collectables you already have

Jasmine Birtles 5th Sep 2020 One Comment

Reading Time: 9 minutes

Did you know you could make money selling collectables that you might already have in the house?

Things that you think are ordinary could be worth more money than you know. The longer you wait, the more their value could increase too.

Find out how well you could do from selling collectables you may have lying around.


what’s in your house that could be a collectable?

Vintage objects and furniture

It’s amazing what’s worth good money now. Selling collectables is a full time job for some people.

The kind of things that can be worth good cash now include:

  • Plastic action figures
  • Little china piggy banks
  • Comics and first editions of popular books
  • Children’s toys and books

As well as so many more everyday things you wouldn’t know about. According to a report by Gumtree such items include the following:

  1. First Edition Modern Books (Dan Brown – Da Vinci Code; Philip Pullman – Northern Lights; Stephenie Meyer – Twilight; George RR Martin – Game of Thrones)
  2. Licensed Toys and Figures (Bratz; Power Rangers Dino Charge; Ninjago LEGO; Harry Potter LEGO; Star Warz LEGO)
  3. 1st Generation Apple iPod Shuffle
  4. Nintendo DS (Original Release)
  5. Designer and High Street Clothing Collaborations (Kate Moss for TopShop; Balmain for H&M)
  6. Amazon Echo (First Release)
  7. Dyson Supersonic™ Hairdryer
  8. Emma Bridgewater Home Accessories (particularly the Portable Radio)
  9. Cath Kidston Furniture (especially the Shabby Chic Chairs)
  10. First Edition Board Games (Perfection, Crossfire, Jumanji, Omega Virus)

So take another look at what you have around your home. Keep hold of anything that looks like a first edition, a rare piece of technology or a plastic action figure, or anything that’s since become popular. Marvel Comics for instance. Today this is a billion dollar media franchise, and one day anything associated with it could be worth lots of money.

We have lots of articles on how you can make money finding and selling collectables. Here are just a few of the items you could consider:


Make money selling comics

comic book collection

Collecting comics isn’t just for kids, famous adult collectors include Nicolas Cage, Samuel L Jackson and Jonathan Ross. They know these things are worth something as well as being fun to own and enjoy.

Here are a few tips:

  • Generally, the older the item, the rarer it is and is therefore more valuable.
  • Misprints, recalled editions, promotional issues and special features are usually rare, and so are higher in value.
  • In comics many central characters would have been introduced in early editions so theses comic books are highly sought after.
  • Finally, the older the item, the fewer are likely to have survived which means they will be very valuable.

For more tips on making money collecting comics take a look at our guide here.


Make money selling old phones

1980's mobile phone

We all laugh at the ‘brick’-style mobiles of the 1980s compared to today’s ultra-slim handsets, but many people don’t realise that certain models are now real collectors’ items.

The market’s limited to models from the early to late 1980s, so anything from the 90s onwards, when the mobile market exploded, isn’t valuable.

Take a look at how you can sell really old phones and which ones can make you the most money here.

Of course, if you have one or two fairly recent phones that are gathering dust at the back of the ‘messy drawer’ you could make money from them by recycling them now.

Try our mobile phone recycling tool here to make money from that small hunk of junk!


make money selling old video games

Game Boy gaming console and games

Do you have games, or consoles, that are not particularly popular so not many people bought them? You never know, their rarity might make them collectors items in the future. If you have the space in your loft, keep them there and don’t take them out for a decade. You could have a good investment on your hands.

Games consoles go retro then vintage, and what’s selling cheap today may be worth a lot of money in a few years. During the 2000’s, the Sega Megadrive and Dreamcast were considered old and cheap. But now, despite being from different eras, both consoles are having a resurgence and are worth quite a bit of money.

Selling collectables like these can make good money, but we imagine it will be more in the future.

If you would like to make some money out of them now, though, check out our guide to making money from your video games here.


Make money selling piggy banks

NatWest collectable piggy banks

This might sound surprising, but like so many other collectibles, the humble piggy has risen over the past few years from unloved children’s ornament to a valuable item. One that can change hands for upwards of £50 a go at car boot sales, on websites and at collectors’ fairs.

If you had a NatWest children’s account in the 80s or early 90s and can’t remember throwing out the piggy bank, you would be well advised to hunt it down.

Click here to find out some piggy selling success stories. 


Make money selling vintage computers

Old vintage computer

There is an ever-growing market for vintage computers and consoles and there is a real potential money-making opportunity here for you.

In October 2014 one of Apple’s first pre-assembled computers, the Apple-1, was sold for a staggering $905,000 at an auction in New York.

A recycling company in the US has just announced that it’s looking for a lady who brought in a box of electronic ‘junk’ including what turned out to be one of the original Apple computers. It sold for around $200,000 and the company wants to find her so that they can give her a 50% share!

So it shows that you need to check quite carefully before you throw away old computers, particularly any really old ones or any made by Apple!

Many people who grew up using the old computers and consoles are now feeling a sense of nostalgia. So are compelled to get their hands back on a model to enjoy them again, and they’re willing to pay.

If you think you have an old computer or console getting dusty in your attic, click here to see how you can cash-in on this trend!


5. Make money selling ladybird books

Ladybird books

If you’re a parent, chance are one of your offspring has owned a classic Ladybird book, if you can find it, put it in plastic and stick it in the attic. It could be worth some serious money one day.

The desirability of Ladybird books has risen over the past few years. To the point that some rare and collectible copies can now change hands for around £300.

The Ladybird imprint is actually 100 years old this year, which shows just how vintage some of their books are now. You might have a rare one hanging about the attic.

You can find Ladybird books in car boot sales, jumble sales, charity shops and on websites. Prices for Ladybird books seem to depend on two main factors: Which series they are from (some are much more popular than others). And how rare they are. But if you find a hidden gem you could make a good lump of cash.

You may need to wait a few years for the big bucks, but keeping and selling collectables like these could prove very lucrative one day.

Learn more about how to find the Ladybird books that are valuable here.


Make money selling vintage shoes

Vintage shoes

Shoes get more popular every year. Even ordinary secondhand shoes are sold on websites around the world, not just eBay.

If you have vintage shoes (anything from the 90s downwards) you could be making some good money by selling them.

In fact there has never been a better time to dip your toes into the vintage shoe market.

Given that people have long disposed of their old shoes, you can expect to find unwanted footwear in all sorts of places.

Happy hunting grounds are charity shops, car boot sales, attics and even the back of your mum’s wardrobe.

Take a look on eBay, where you’ll get an idea of prices currently being paid for vintage shoes and which types are most popular. Keep a close eye on the fashion press, too, to see where the style trends are heading.

If you think you have a pair of vintage shoes that could make a fortune click here to see what to do next.


Make money selling Barbie dolls

Barbie doll collectionDespite being 55 years old, Barbie’s pulling power has remained defiantly undiminished.

She is officially the biggest selling toy in history. In fact three Barbies are sold every second!

The blonde bombshell first burst, fully formed, onto the toy scene in 1959 and now, standing at just under 12 inches tall, she heads a business worth almost two billion dollars a year. Individual dolls can be worth thousands of pounds.

Some Barbies sell for thousands although many others are not worth anything. Like a lot of collectables, you need to know which are the ones that could be worth something now. Or a bit later, when selling collectables like Barbie, always try to find out the age of the item. The older the better.

For more information about what to look for when finding Barbie dolls click here.


8. Make money selling music and film memorabilia

Elvis memorabilia/merchendise

Selling collectables based on popular culture memorabilia is a fun and exciting way of making money.

Props, costumes and rare records can be a great investment, with some valuable items turning up in the strangest places.

With film, Hollywood memorabilia is much more popular (and therefore valuable) than items from British cinema and these collectibles have grown in popularity as music and films have become bigger business. When it comes to music, Beatles artefacts are the most collectible worldwide.

Elvis Presley memorabilia is hugely popular with people paying anything from £5 for a new Elvis doll to $100,000 upwards for a rare Vegas suit.

To find out how to bag yourself a piece of pop culture history to sell click here.


make money selling first editions

First edition Ladybird books

It used to be that you had to have a really old first edition book to make any money from it.

Now, though, if you have a first edition of something recently popular like Harry Potter or Twilight, you can be looking at a lot more money than you would with an impressive-looking first edition of Sir Walter Scott, for example.

It’s still possible to find a gem in charity shops and at car boot sales, but it’s getting harder all the time. You will have to pick up an awful lot of rocks before you find the diamond.

The three main things to think about when collecting books are

  • The popularity of the author,
  • The rarity of the book
  • And its condition.

Collecting modern first editions is a good place to start because it’s considered relatively straightforward and cheap and of course silver screen adaptations like Harry Potter and Lord of the Rings are always in demand by collectors and sellers.

However, the really old ones, if they are rare and written by well-known writers, are still a good bet.

To find out more about how to start collecting antique books click here.


Make money selling snow Globes

Snow Globe collection

Did you get a snow globe for Christmas or when you were on holiday?

Many are mass-produced now but ones that are rarer, and older, can actually fetch a good price now.

You would be surprised which ones can be valuable. For example, snow domes with the current Pope in (yes, that is a thing) are worth buying next time you’re in Rome as they jump up in price when each Pope dies!

It may not seem like a great money-making opportunity, but in the UK snow globes picked up for only a few pounds at a car boot sale can go for £15 in specialist shops if they are in reasonable condition and have unusual designs.

Their appeal for many collectors is emotional. “They are perfect, little, untouched worlds that remind you of the lost simplicity of childhood,” says London collector Lucy Summers.

For more tips on how to make money collecting snow globes click here.

Sign Up – Newsletter
0 0 votes
Article Rating
Notify of

1 Comment
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
5 years ago

Some great tips for making money from collectables.

Jasmine Birtles

Your money-making expert. Financial journalist, TV and radio personality.

Jasmine Birtles

Send this to a friend