Have you ever wondered if the storage spaces of your home might be hiding a secret treasure worth enough to buy a new car — or at least fill yours up with gas? Regardless of what you use the funds for, if you’re looking to make some extra cash, here are some surprisingly valuable items you might already own.
1. Vintage Suitcases
There’s a love affair going on with vintage hard-sided luggage, train cases, hat boxes and old leather baggage trunks.
2. Batteries Not Included
Almost anything made in the 1990s and earlier that’s still in the original packaging sells for a premium. Think toys, games and regular household items, such as dish sets. Believe it or not, even unopened food products, such as cereal, go for much more than retail.
3. Cameras and Photography Equipment
Older cameras and accessories that are no longer made are hot items, and the accessories needed to operate them are even hotter. Look for undeveloped film and unused flash cubes.
4. Vintage Machine Parts
Parts that are no longer manufactured — but still needed — to repair vintage appliances, record players or cars sell fast on sites such as eBay.
5. Empty Boxes
Yes, we’re serious. Original-branded toy boxes and jewelry cases go for a pretty penny because people often discard them. You’d be surprised how many people want to buy an empty Tiffany’s gift box.
6. Vintage Medical and Pharmacy Supplies
A lovely old scale for weighing babies, an antique box of smelling salts or a metal dentist’s cabinet: all of these are in demand by niche collectors.
7. Hand-Embroidered Household Linens
Buyers love dish towels, tablecloths and pillowcases with hand-stitched designs in good condition without stains.
8. Vintage Advertising
Old advertising ephemera, including calendars, signs and promotional items, are valued for the beauty of the artwork and the brand names.
Although they might not always be worth a fortune, there are other places to check for personal treasures than just your attic or basement. Find out where to score some cheap antiques and other items that collectors crave here.