You've got hundreds of vinyl records and you feel like your collection has to be worth some real money. Sadly, that's probably not the case. Assessing record value is an interesting prospect because while most are worth very little, some rare records can be worth hundreds or even thousands of dollars.
Common Rules About Record Value
For a record to have any value, it has to be in pretty new or in "like new" condition. This means the record must have few, if any, scratches, shouldn't be dirty, and the sleeve should lack stains or creases. Typically, the most valuable records are rock and roll, jazz, and blues records made in the 50s and 60s. Usually, records made before or after that time period are less valuable.
The reason for this is simple: supply and demand. Records during this period are simply in more demand than those that lie outside this period and were also pressed in lower numbers. As a result, the low supply and the high demand makes them valuable.
Why Some Records Are Worth More
Records beyond this time period may have higher prices if they are, for whatever reason, rare. For example, promo records pressed in very low numbers typically fetch high prices, regardless of condition (though better conditions naturally fetch higher prices). Colored or picture vinyl records are typically worth more as well, as the process to print them makes them more expensive and they are typically rare or promotional albums. Don't be fooled, though, by high priced vinyl you might find in record shops: these higher prices are often for newly printed vinyl, not vintage stuff.
Valuing Your Collection
Unless your collection has some truly rare records, it's not likely worth more than a few pennies per record. That doesn't mean that you can't get a good sale price on your records. Often, selling in bulk is your best value here. You may be able to entice a buyer through the sheer size of your collection, and selling 100 records for $100 is more than possible, especially if you keep the sleeves in good shape.
Before doing that, though, it's worth checking out some free record pricing sites. Sites like these can value your records and give you a better idea of their individual worth. Then you can sell them individually to potentially make even more money.
Selling your records in this way will require a lot more work than selling them in bulk, but it is ultimately the best way to make the most money. The cool thing is that you might even discover you own a rare record without even knowing it. For more information, contact companies like Everybody's Records.