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Which collections will be most valuable in the long run?

Retro styled lp records on a flea market.

Collectors often hold on to rare items in order to get as much from them as possible in the future. Whether it’s coins, bottles of wine, art, stamps, or even figures from classic films, investors and collectors will pay huge sums of money for rare items.

But it can be difficult deciding what to start collecting now in order for it to be worth something in the future. Here, we’ll go through some of the most valuable collection pieces in the world, which could give a hint as to what you should start keeping an eye out for now.

Fine wines

A firm favourite for collectors around the world, fine wines have always been able to pull in the cash at auctions. One of the most expensive bottles of wine ever sold, a single 6L bottle of 1947 Cheval Blanc, went for £192,000 in 2010.

It’s important to note that not every wine can be kept to be resold at a later time. It all depends on the vintage and the vineyard where it was produced.

If you think you’ve come across a bottle of wine that may be worth something, the best thing to do is get it valued by a fine wine specialist, such as the London Wine Cellar, who will be able to give exact figures as to how much the wine is worth, as well as assist in its sale.

While it is possible to sell single bottles of wine, collections of wine bottles, especially prestigious ones, tend to sell for more. The most in-demand wines tend to be “old worlds” such as Bordeaux and Grand Cru Burgundy. You can usually buy these in crates of six bottles directly from the vineyard, and will need to store them correctly, and create a paper trail of provenance to prove the wine is not fake. The provenance helps to prove to buyers that it was stored correctly, and that the quality of wine hasn’t been damaged, which can impact the selling price of your bottle or collection. As long as you’ve stored your wine correctly, and the bottle or collection is a rare vintage, you’re sure to have a very valuable investment after a few years.

Individual Lego bricks and sets

Even though Lego bricks are still being mass produced for new collections, there is a huge opportunity to make money by selling old pieces. Older sets can fetch high prices amongst collectors, but perhaps the most surprising thing is how much money individual pieces sell for.

There are a large number of serious Lego collectors around the world, who may be missing just one or two pieces from an old, limited edition set, and be willing to spend large amounts of money to make their collection whole again. If you are the lucky owner of one of these sets, you may consider going through it to see if you have any special, coveted pieces of the over 400 billion Lego blocks there currently are in the world.

There are even websites dedicated to finding, buying, and selling these rare pieces, such as BrickLink.com. The online marketplace gives Lego fanatics the chance to search for and buy out of production bricks, or pieces with a manufacturing fault—such as the red Darth Vader helmet—which is currently going for over £900.

Lego sets and series are now being discontinued quicker than ever, making collections and specific pieces more scarce. Getting hold of one of these sets could work out to be a valuable investment, especially if it’s based around a trend that has a cult following. The Star Wars Ultimate Battle Lego set, for example, is currently on sale for over £400, despite only being released in 2005.

Vinyl records and LPs

When cassettes and CDs took over in the music industry, no one could have guessed that vinyl records would make a comeback. Music purists defended cumbersome LPs for their supposed superior sound quality, and now it seems that younger generations are catching on.

Depending on when the vinyl was pressed, or if it’s been signed by the artist, you could get a huge amount of cash after paying next to nothing. For example, a copy of the critically acclaimed classic record The Velvet Underground & Nico was bought by someone at a New York record store for a mere 75 cents. After realising it was a 1966 acetate pressing that contained very early versions of songs that would end up on the finished album, the LP was sold on eBay for $25,200.

While it’s unlikely that the average person has a rare one-of-a-kind pressing of an iconic album in music history, having a first pressing copy in excellent condition could earn you a decent amount of money. A first pressing of Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band, for example, could get you up to £150 if it’s in good condition. Have a look through your old collection of records, or simply start investing in new pressings now, and you could have a vinyl library worth a large amount of cash.

Original comic books

For something so cheap, comic books can be worth a lot of money—depending on the comic. The most expensive comic book ever sold is Action Comics #1, which introduced the world to Superman. The original comic was sold for just 10 cents, and since then, four copies have sold for over $1 million each, with some reaching $3 million. However, there is a grading process in place for comic books, based on their quality. The higher the grade, the better condition the book is in, and the more it is worth.

Of course, there’s no way to tell what new comics will be worth anything in the future, so it can be a gamble to buy new comics solely for the purpose of selling them on in the future. However, if you are hoping to collect comic books for a long-term investment, make sure you keep them in the best condition you can, as it could be the difference between a few hundred and a few million dollars in the future.

Elliot Preece

Elliot is the Editor at ABCMoney. He manages a team that writes and contributes to many leading publications across a number of industries.

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