Most pawn shops are independently owned, so there is no way to say with any certainty that all pawn shops buy vintage records. However, we can confirm that we buy vintage records at our pawn shop in Azusa. Read on to learn more about selling or shopping for vintage records at a pawn shop.
Why Would a Pawn Shop Buy Vintage Records?
You may think that a pawn shop is just a quick place to sell unwanted items for a few bucks. But nothing could be further from the truth. Instead, pawn shops are often havens for collectors. Collectors know that they are likely to find rare, limited edition, and sometimes incredibly valuable collectibles such as antiques, memorabilia, coins, and even vinyl records.
Vintage records are cherished collectible items for some music lovers. But data shows young people are increasingly interested in vinyl records. In fact, vinyl sales increased in 2021 by more than 50%, with nearly 42 million vinyl records sold. Some of those are new albums, but some of them are vintage classics. Customers on the hunt for a Classic Beatles record, Rolling Stones album, or Nat King Cole record are known to visit pawn shops. As such, pawn shops want to acquire those items in their inventory.
How Much Money Will I Get for My Vinyl Records?
If you want to sell vinyl records to a pawn shop, it’s important to know that you’ll get a much better offer if you bring in a collection, as opposed to a single record. Other factors will also determine the price you may get for vintage records.
What Condition is the Vintage Record In?
An unused item is typically always going to get you a better offer than a used item, with all other things being equal. So a vintage Led Zeppelin record that has never been opened will typically get you a higher sales price than the same vintage record, that has been used.
To help you familiarize yourself with how conditions are judged for vintage records be sure you know the following lingo:
- Sealed (S): This means the album is completely unopened.
- Mint (M): The record is in perfect condition, but the plastic seal is open.
- Near Mint (NM): There may be a scuff on the packaging or the record, but it doesn’t impact the quality of the sound.
- Excellent (E): The record has clearly been played, but the sound quality is not compromised.
- Very Good Plus (VG+): There may be an impact on the sound quality, but the average listener probably won’t notice.
Unless you have an unopened album, it’s in your best interest to play it before you bring it to the pawn shop. Albums that are badly scratched or damaged or have diminished sound quality won’t be of interest to the pawn shop.
Which Imprint is on the Album?
Different versions of vinyl records can fetch you vastly different offers from a pawn shop. Remember that different releases will have different imprints. So you might want to Google an imprint of a vintage album you’re thinking of selling, to make sure you know if it’s an exceedingly rare, and potentially unbelievably valuable record.
How Rare is the Album?
A limited release vintage record will be worth more than albums that were mass produced. You can check online to learn more about rare albums. Some of the rarest vintage records include:
- Miles Davis, Kind of Blue
- The Who, The Who Sell Out
- Elvis Presley, That’s All Right/Blue Moon
- Queen, Hot Space
- Michael Jackson, Thriller
- Pink Floyd, The Wall
- Prince, The Black Album
- The Beatles, The Beatles (aka The White Album)
- Bob Dylan, The Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan
What Type of Album is It?
There are a variety of vinyl records. Records also play at three different rotations per minute (RPMs). Records will play at speeds of 78, 45, or 33. Albums also come in assorted sizes.
12 inches (LP)
Thick black vintage records known as “long playing” are referred to as LPs. They typically have 20+ minutes of music per side, and paly at 33 or 45 RPM
These black vinyl records only have a few songs, on their A side and B side. They play at 45 RPM.
EPs (12 or 7 inch)
Extended play records (EPs) often contain more music that a 7-inch record but less than a full 12-inch LP. They play at 33 or 45 RPM.
Is the Record in Demand?
To get a great price when you sell a vintage record to a pawn shop, it must be a record people want to buy. If you have a vintage record by a band that never really made it, the record probably isn’t worth anything. For a pawn shop to buy your record it needs to be in demand.
However, keep in mind that newer albums may also be in demand. Because of the vinyl comeback, some artists have been releasing vinyl albums in extremely limited editions. These may be of interest to a pawn shop. And they may fetch you a great price!
Buy and Sell Vintage Records in Azusa
Azusa Pawn buys and sells select vintage records. Although we buy and sell more luxury items, jewelry, and electronics, we do have a full selection of collectibles and antiques that we like to replenish with new items. As a longstanding, locally owned and operated pawn shop serving Azusa, Glendora, Baldwin Park, and surrounding communities in the San Gabriel Valley, we have a huge customer base, and countless collectors who visit us frequently. If you’re interested in selling vintage records to us, bring them to our shop in downtown Azusa.
Azusa Pawn is open seven days from 9:30 am – 6:00 pm. We buy and sell items every day. In order to best serve you, we also have an online store, that features many, but not all items we have in stock. We look forward to showing you why we maintain a 4.9-star rating on Google, with more than 350 reviews.