How much do large Vinyl collections go for these days?


What is vinyl pricing doing these days? Is good used vinyl appreciating or depreciating?

I have a collection of about 1700 Jazz LP's. 95%+ are VG+ or better (I bought them that way and clean records every time on a Loricraft)

About 500 are earlier (50's, 60's) issues like Blue note w42, NY USA, a few Lex Ave, Bergenfield Prestige, Columbia, Savoy, Verve, Riverside, Atlantic etc.

The rest are OJC reissues, and other later good jazz labels like Enja, Soul Note, Inner City Mo fi etc.

Many were purchased from big jazz collections on Ebay over the years. About 20% were purchased new and have seen only a few plays (given there are so many). The rest were mostly purchased from the Jazz Record Center in NYC and anyone who knows them is well acquainted with the quality of their records.

I estimate I paid about 50K in total for these, so an average of $30. The best stuff was $100 or so on Ebay. The OJC's were $8 years ago new from Acoustic Sounds. Would you hold or sell?

I know the answer is "it depends" but any other insights are appreciated.


jyprez
I would definitely hold on to it and let my kids have the pain of selling or dumping it. What would I buy for extra $50k? Used Jag? Definitely not, I would buy more LPs and get back to where we started...

the price for collections is heavily discounted, compared to pricing records individually.  People willing to pay high prices are looking to fill in gaps in their own collections.  It's a lot of trouble to sell individual records!  Anyone willing to buy a collection is either looking for a tremendous bargain or wanting to part it out and make money, and won't pay anything like the amounts you referenced.  

I'm not an expert but I think most record dealers or large collectors would offer a buck an album. Others might sort out the gems and give you half of retail. It's a sad situation because it's so labor intensive to sell records. The only people making money are the shipping companies. 
my experience is that unless a record is true Mint, the value is relatively low
If I figured half of retail on the best 500 as suggested, and then $1 per record for the rest it would be about 15K which sounds like a number I could live with assuming retail is actually still what it was on ebay 5 years ago.
If you have a few hours to spare it may be worth cataloging your collection on Discogs. Using the app it's pretty easy and fun -- I just went through my collection (1200 or so). This will help you a) get a range on value (using the Discog sales history), b) generate a list you could use with sellers and c) give you an insurance record

You might also then decide to sell some of them yourself especially the high value ones -- I've had good luck selling on eBay but have yet to try selling (rather than buying) on Discogs

Provided you grade well and pack securely you should have no problems selling
One third of the Discogs price is what a dealer might give.
I've sold stuff on discogs.. You may not get as high a price as an auction on eBay, but that's also not a guaranteed price either. For rare stuff, discogs is priced accordingly, though, so you will get a higher price for rare/in demand discs without worrying about an auction petering out below what you were hoping to get.
I recently sold by late brother-in-laws collection to a record store.  1326 LPs for $3000.  Most were VG+ condition (he played once and recorded to cassette).
Always sell to the end user.

You frame the question "hold or sell" as if you have a liquid commodity that is sold as easily as a NYSE holding. Records are more like penny stocks. If you want retail value, you have to sell individually, investing time and energy and sometimes not finding a buyer at all. 

If you sell the collection to a record store they will offer you about 20% of what they expect to get for it over time. If you want to sell retail online to get close retail, consider about a half hour of your time for each album to be photographed, listed, packed, shipped. Consider ~$1 for packing materials each, and 10% or more selling/payment fees if you want to use eBay or similar large market. 
When I've evaluated collections to buy for purpose of reselling, I try to figure that I can clear $20/hour of my labor and if the collection allows that after expenses I will buy it. Many who inherit or decide to sell overvalue their collections because of their emotional attachments and the waking up process often takes a while. With classical and especially opera, the values are less and trending quickly towards zero. Cheers,
Spencer

Thanks, Spencer. I realize selling LP's is not like selling stocks on my Fidelity account. The 20% you suggest is a number that i think is in the range of reasonable.

Thanks to those who suggested Discogs. I was not aware of this site before. I tried a few LP's and it works pretty well.

 I think the really labor intensive thing about selling LP's would be to show images of your actual LP''s, covers etc. If you could just list with the images provided on Discogs, and then describe any differences (e.g. "there are some stamps from the radio station on the back of the cover or the owner signed their name or slight wear and water damage on one side etc.....") then this would work. The advantage of Ebay, of course, is you are selling to a very big, international market and I often found myself bidding against very deep pocket collectors from Asia etc. who were willing to pay big (bigger) bucks than I could rationalize (supply vs. demand at work). I don't know how deep the Discogs market is. 

I sold my opera collection, about 800 near mint records, for $75. The alternative was to donate them to the local opera.

In other words, ime, opera records have almost no value. 

The discogs market is definitely broad, I think its depth depends on the genre. I've purchased and sold from/to international buyers many times. But the time between listing and selling depends a lot on what you're selling and how rare it is.

Whatever you do, good luck!
Depending on what you have and the condition you might be in for a surprise regarding the skyrocketing prices of certain Jazz records.First and second pressings are in high demand and there are a growing number of "sleeper" records that fall between the cracks that demand high figures.You got some very sketchy advice from the people here and this place is not the source you want to deal with determining the future and/or liquidation of your Jazz records.Another place you don't want anything to do with is a retail record store,you will get screwed for sure.
   Looking at DISCOGS is a good idea for a general ballpark price and i would direct you to JAZZCOLLECTOR.COM which is a site devoted to the tracking and discussion of the ebb and flow of Jazz records sold on Ebay and they have a alphabetical list of records and prices.I just hate to see people get boned on their record collections,unless of course,it is i who do the boning.Insert annoying snide smile icon here.
 Truth be told,you are a dolphin in the shark infested and highly competitive waters of the buying and selling of records.Most collections usually house a small percentage of truly valuable records,once you research them you might try selling these yourself on Ebay.Let the market determine the value.Good luck!!!!
The answer depends on the value of your time, and how much of FMV you want to receive.  If you want the LPs sold, as quickly as possible, then call dealers who will come to you, inspect your collection and make you a cash offer for everything.  Understand that you will receive a fraction of FMV....somewhere between 10-30% would be my guess.   If I were in your situation, I would segregate the most valuable records and sell them myself online.  Pre Liberty Blue Notes are worth more than you think right now, and it would not surprise me if many are worth more than $100 each.  Same for Prestige NY and NJ pressings.  Other labels not so much.   Discogs is a good resource for common and moderately valuable records.  It is difficult to navigate and there is a lot of incorrect and overlapping information in their segregation of pressings.  As an example, I have LPs listed on Discogs right now, and for some there are 3 specific description defaults for each LP !  Hard to determine which to use- so I list using all 3 and then delete as needed when one sells.   Time consuming.   You seem to be a knowledgeable collector, so you should not have difficulty in determining which pressings you have.   Jazzcollector and London Jazz collector are excellent web resources for investigation the minutia of LP pressing variations for Jazz labels.   When you have identified your pressings, you can then research FMV.   I would use a combination of Collectors Frenzy and Popsike to view recent sales.  You can search by artist, title, label, catalog number.   You can quickly view results and determine a value range for your pressing.   Anything worth more than $50 should be sold via Ebay.   You will have to take very clear pictures of the front/back covers, and record labels.  I have an iPhone 5se and the camera has sufficient resolution to create large images suitable for Ebay.  My experience is if I want FMV, I sell it on ebay.   I purchased a collection a few years ago.  I picked what I wanted then sold the rest.  Anything worth more than $25 was sold on Ebay, the rest at a local record fair at $5 each / 3 for $10.   I sold everything within 3 months of purchase and received more than I expected.  But it did take time and that is real question you have to answer for yourself.  How much time do you want to devote to the sale of your collection ?
Great discussion! Ties right in with my recent post!! Thanks folks.

I recently acquired a 3500 classical record collection from the widow of a close friend.  I investigated a couple of dealers --- one of which "cherry-picked" the collection and paid 50 cents a disc for 300 discs.  Six hours of my time for $150 !  Another dealer estimated 25 cents a disc, maybe 50 for some and a rare occasion of $1 for those few.  The only real interest was when I mentioned my personal collection of about 12,000, of which about half are "pop" albums.  I will investigate "discogs" --- thanks for the suggestion.   Vinyl is great stuff !
I believe those who've suggested individual sales correctly understand the record market. Otherwise it is truly likely to be pennies on the dollar. (I assume yours are cataloged.)
It's like a large collection of anything.  The dealers will cherry pick the good stuff and trash (or not take) the rest.  You may as well skip the middle man and sell the good stuff on ebay and donate/trash the rest.  Unless you have unlimited time to sell albums at $10 a pop.
As a point of reference, I have about 900 LPs’ in my collection; all but 150 were purchased new by me. The album jackets were covered with a 3 mil plastic resealable sleeve as soon as they came out of the shrinkwrap. 95% of the vinyl is in NM condition so the collection is truly lustworthy. My local used record dealer offered me a paltry $1500.00 for the lot and he knows I’ve got a lot of goodies: MFSL, Japanese and UK pressings etc.

I realize that selling each LP individually would be much more profitable but I have no intention of selling ANY of them. I plan on being buried with them.