Whether they’re GI Joes, Transformers, or NES games, toys have become incredibly popular with collectors in recent years. Some of this is nostalgia that Generation X and Millennials have for a simpler time, but others have found that collectible toys can be a good investment. These collectors aren’t wrong – vintage toys in the right condition can sell for thousands of dollars – but there’s still a trick to making money from old childhood playthings. If you plan to invest in any vintage collectible toys, here are some tips to keep in mind.
First of all, a toy can only be a good investment if it’s in good condition. Sadly, this isn’t the case with most toys. After all, toys are meant to be played with. They get beaten up, thrown around, and covered in dirt by children who only care that they are mostly intact. This means that you probably won’t find anything of great value in your childhood toy box. You’re better off talking to other collectors that have vintage toys, such as Transformers, for sale if you want something in good condition. Ideally, you want a toy in its original packaging.
2Do Your Research
While it’s tempting to buy just about any old toy you come across with the hopes that you’ll strike gold sooner or later, that’s not a smart investment strategy. Instead, spend some time doing research on which toys are the most valuable and why. You can usually find out when most toys were produced and sold by looking them up online, and you can often get a good idea of whether or not a vintage toy you found is authentic by going to the manufacturer’s official website. Reproductions are common in the world of collectibles, so do as much research as you can before you make a big purchase.
3Know Where to Shop
If you have the budget for it, you can usually buy collectibles in great condition from other collectors. If you don’t have that kind of money, you might have to look elsewhere. Pawn shops and thrift stores are good places to start if you’re just getting your feet wet. The same goes for eBay and other online marketplaces. Conventions are also great places to shop if you’re looking for toys within a certain niche, especially since they can give you a better idea of what kinds of toys and properties could become valuable in the next few years. Just be sure to research anything you wish to buy if it’s getting outside of your price range.
4Stick to Your Budget
Speaking of prices, you should always set a strict budget when buying collectibles. Having a smaller budget will not only keep you from spending more than you can afford, but it can also open your eyes to smaller investments that you might otherwise overlook.
5Avoid “Collector’s Editions”
Buying a “collector’s edition” of a toy might seem like a good investment, but those toys are almost never as valuable as earlier editions. Simply put, only collectors are interested in “collector’s editions” of anything. They will likely buy them up and keep them in pristine condition, which means that the market will be full of them in a few years. If you want something really valuable, try to find a toy that was sold decades ago that was meant to be played with by a child. Finding such a toy that is still in good condition is much rarer, which makes it that much more valuable.
Collecting vintage toys is a fun hobby, but it’s also one that takes a lot of work and a little luck. Old toys that are still in good shape are hard to come by, but they can also be great investments. Keep these tips in mind as you shop around, and good luck with your search. No matter what kinds of toys you might want, you’re bound to find something that suits your interests as well as your budget.