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These Vintage Toys Are More Valuable Than You’d Think

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vintage Fisher-Price Little People set

We all probably wished at one point we would have known our favorite toy or kitchen dish would be worth hundreds if not thousands of dollars, and now it’s been donated or not very well taken care of over the years.

If you’re thinking about cleaning out grandma’s closet or your attic full of vintage goodies, you may want to check out this list of vintage toys and other items that are surprisingly VERY valuable!

1. 1984 G1 Transformers Optimus Prime

optimus prime truck transformers in box

How much is it worth? As much as $4,400 for a perfect, sealed box.

Sold listing on eBay

Why is it so valuable? With 7 Transformers movies currently out, I’m sure you’ve heard of the billion-dollar franchise, Transformers. Started by Michael Bay in the ’80s, Optimus Prime became everyone’s favorite. And while almost every kid in 1984 had an Optimus Prime Transformer truck, if you didn’t actually take it out of the box, you can sell one now for around $4,000. I bet you wish you never opened it, am I right? 😏

2. 1943 copper penny

How much is it worth? Some sell for as little as $2,500, whereas certified pennies can top out at a whopping $60,000 up to $200,000+.

Sold listing on eBay

Why is it so valuable? They were made by accident. According to The U.S. Coin Guide, during World War II the country put a halt to using copper on pennies to save it for much-needed war ammunition. It’s believed that they were accidentally made from a few remaining blank copper planchets that were left in hoppers at the coin presses. There are only 25-40 of these rare pennies known to exist today.

3. Vintage 1980’s Care Bears

vintage pink care bears

How much are they worth? Anywhere from $500 up to $10,000 for a whole collection.

Sold listing on eBay

Why are they so valuable? Many of us loved the Care Bears growing up, making it one of the biggest kids classics of all time and serious toy collectors are now scooping up all the of these vintage stuffed bears that are still floating around. Whether you consider it clinging to the nostalgia of childhood or not, sources are saying that collectors are paying big bucks for rare ones such as The Nobleheart Horse Care Bears CousinThe roundheart Cat Care Bear Cousin, and Surprise Care Bear. However, if you’re holding onto a VTG Care Bears Cousins Pink Monkey you can expect to cash out at around the $10,000 mark.

4. 1980s Samantha American Girl doll

Samantha american girl doll with box

How much is it worth? An original Samantha American Girl Doll manufactured by Plesant company will go for anywhere between $500 and $5,400+.

Listing sold on eBay

Why is it so valuable? Samantha Parkington was one of the very first American Girl dolls ever created. Kids, parents, and now toy collectors love American Girl because the dolls are unique in that they all have names, their own personality, culture, challenges, and heart. And if you have your hands on an impeccable doll from your childhood, it could be worth tons – according to USA Today as much as $5,400.

5. The Beatles – White Album

the beatles white album cover

How much is it worth? Depending on the serial number and condition it could be worth anywhere between $1,500 and $790,000. The lower the pressed serial number, the higher the value.

Sold listing on eBay

Why is it so valuable? Need I say more than The Beatles? The popular White Album was released in 1968 and only members of the band and executives were given the most valuable vinyl discs, however, they’re floating around today and while the chances of having one are low – it’s definitely not impossible. Each of these covers was embossed and stamped with a serial number so if you’re holding onto one that’s not printed you may be sitting on a goldmine. Ringo’s original White Album sold at auction for $790,000 making it the most expensive record ever sold.

6. Elastic Batman

elastic batman toy in box

How much is it worth? Up to $15,000 or more.

No eBay listings.

Why is it so valuable? Well, the short answer would be that there are only 2 of these toys ever made so any Batman-obsessed toy collector wants to be the first one to get their hands on one of them – that’s if they have the cash to spare. 😏According to Purple Clover, “the stretchy toy was created in 1979 in response to waning interest in traditional 8″ figurines, but toy company Kenner thought it was too similar to its popular ‘Stretch Armstrong’ product line.” Kenner sued Mego putting a halt to the manufacturing of Elastic Batman and one of the two that were made has since sold for $15,000 at auction in 2006.

7. First edition Harry Potter books

first edition harry potter books with autograph

How much are they worth? A couple of thousand dollars for first editions up to $56,000 for editions that list Joanne Rowling as the author on the title page as opposed to J.K. which are considered collectors editions.

Sold listing on eBay

Why are they so popular? It’s no secret that Harry Potter quickly became a household name, and believe it or not, JK Rowling once had time to sign hundreds of her first edition books before her rise to stardom. (Can you imagine getting your hands on one of those? 😱) If you’re lucky enough to have one of these books you’re in luck because they’re worth a small fortune! However, there are still other editions for sale over at Abebooks that are going for a few thousand dollars.

8. Original 1959 Barbie doll

original 1959 barbie doll

How much is it worth? Anywhere from $7,000 up to $27,000+ for a mint condition model.

Sold listing on eBay

Why are they so valuable? If your grandma or mom were ever into Barbies, they may have an original Barbie somewhere in the attic. The first iconic Barbie dolls were released in 1959 making the first edition the most valuable to collectors. She has golden hair, a black and white bathing suit, and blue eyeshadow. And if yours has holes in the bottom of the feet, you’re lucky enough to have the rarest of them all which has sold for over $27,000 in the past.

9. Super Mario Bros. test launch game

super mario bros test launch game

How much is it worth? $2,000 and up. One perfectly sealed copy recently sold for $140,000.

Sold listing on eBay

Why is it so valuable? If you played Nintendo as a kid, you probably have one of the first-ever games launched with it – Super Mario Bros. And if you didn’t already open it, you can strike it rich! While prices for vintage games can fluctuate, gaming collectors will pay big bucks to get their hands on an unopened game, so if you have the rare version of Super Mario Brosfrom Nintendo’s limited “soft launch” of the NES then you could sell it for roughly $140,00. Other listings for the mint or unopened 1989 game can still get you a few thousand dollars depending on the condition.

10. Lucky in Love Pyrex

lucky in love pyrex dish with pink hearts and grass

How much is it worth? Last sold for over $4,000.

No eBay listings. 

Why is it so valuable? Time to raid Grandma’s kitchen cabinets (with her permission of course). 😏 The Lucky in Love Pyrex dish is thought to be either a limited edition or possibly even a test product. According to Pyrex Potluck, the one-quart Round Casserole dish remains one of the most elusive Pyrex designs ever created by Corning Glass Works and recent online auctions have seen Lucky In Love sell for over $4,000.

11. Vintage 1974 Fisher-Price Little People Castle

vintage fisher price castle sitting on wood table

How much is it worth? Around $200-$350 with the original box.

Sold listing on eBay

Why is it so valuable? In the ’70s when this castle was first produced, it was the very first Fisher-Price toy made of this caliber. It was also said to be the most expensive toy for them to produce given its extensive amount of detail. For many adults who grew up in the late ’70s and ’80s, this toy brings back a lot of nostalgia and while you won’t likely get thousands for it, you can get slightly more cash if you have the original box.

Check out these kitchen gadgets that you didn’t even know you needed!

Join The Discussion

Comments 35

  1. Matalier

    That fisher price castle is in my three year old’s room right now! If only my parents had kept the box! 😆

    • Amber (Hip Sidekick)

      Aww, How neat! Thanks for sharing, Matalier!

    • J. Davis

      Haha…my kids play with the same one whenever we visit my parents! My parents keep just about everything…except this box;)

    • Sandra

      This article is NOT accurate and very misleading. This very castle sold on October 5th for $15.00. Most of the other things listed are not worth as quoted. I know I am a dealer and do this for a living. Some toys can be worth money but there is something special about them. Did you know how many heads they made for the first Barbie? Only certain ones are worth money… have to know what to look for.

    • Kay

      Can u share a pic? Would luv to c ur collection. That’s a great idea to have them displayed in the wall. I have a bunch of vintage Polly Pocket compacts. And my girls have similar cute miniature toys I plan to keep for them. Those special toys will stay in the fam. If my girls don’t want them anymore, I’ll save for the grandkids.

  2. Klp

    I have a Samantha doll but she was well played with.

    • E

      Right? My Samantha doll is from 1992 and while I have a number of original outfits and accessories, she was well loved and played with! She is in great shape, for being almost 30 yrs old, but not collector quality. I plan on passing her to my daughter when she is a bit older.

      • MamaBear

        I have an original teddy ruxpin doll that still works

    • Suz OH

      I have a Samantha doll and many accessories that was only gently used by my daughter, but am hoping to hand on to a granddaughter someday. Now that will be priceless!

  3. Kim Tennyson

    Love this post

  4. Michele

    eBay is a great site to buy everything at low costs too! I bought a brand name water filter for my fridge that retails at $50 for $12 on eBay. I’ve also purchased used textbooks and brand name clothes on eBay for cheap!

  5. Alissa

    I don’t know a lot about vintage toys but when I saw a Kermit the Frog at a garage sale a few weeks ago, I had a feeling he was valuable. I paid $1, put him on eBay and he just sold for $100!

  6. SUZY

    Vintage toys are awesome ! As a child of the early 80s I have had several of the ones listed. Last year I sold some vintage Care Bears for $250 on eBay that I got for free at a yard sale! My parents still have the Fisher Price Castle and House and Airplane Set – my kids still love playing with them when we go to her house.

    • Amber (Hip Sidekick)

      How neat! I still have a Care Bear somewhere! LOL! Thanks for taking the time to comment!

  7. Gscribble

    I love the old fisher price sets! I have the Sesame Street playhouse one and it’s still my favorite. I wish I had my old fire station set

  8. boltsmom

    I sold some vintage Barbie clothes for $7-15 per piece. I wish I still had some of my toys from my childhood, but I do have a ton of old books. Sadly those aren’t worth much, but at least my nieces and nephews and now my son have all enjoyed them!

  9. Suzanne

    I have the original Skipper doll, but she was very much played with! I can’t imagine keeping stuff in the box as a kid! LOL!

  10. Jacy

    My mom has the vintage Barbie doll, but when I was a little kid, I scraped the boobs off on the concrete. LOL!!!

    • MamaBear

      I remember doing that too haha!

    • Mel

      Ouch! LOL

    • Tracey

      LOL – too funny. We had the Grow-Up Skipper; twist her arm and she grows boobs!! My sister still has her too.

  11. PB

    Oh not again! I collect American girl and every time this list is shared a bunch of people start listing dolls for crazy prices. These people then get angry, when people explain that the doll isn’t worth much. Ton’s of Samantha’s were produced, they sell for about $50. So, unless you have a mint condition, white body doll, signed by Pleasant Rowland, then don’t expect to get $1,000. No AG doll has sold for $5,400.

    • JJ

      Interesting. I do have a white body Samantha signed by Pleasant that was not played with much. Do you know the going rate?

  12. Jillian

    Remember if you are letting your kiddos play with the vintage toys, they contain lead. They make great on the shelf display pieces not so great for actually touching

    • JD

      Unfortunately lots of the new ones do too. Anything from China, which is a lot, is suspect. The recall lists can be very distressing.

    • Joy

      Not all vintage toys contain lead. And if you are going to let your child play with a 1959 Barbie please call me first! LOL

  13. Christie

    I do have the Beatles White Album!

  14. Lisa JP

    My home office is decorated with vintage toys. Mostly from the 80’s, but a few 70’s and 90’s too. I buy the majority of it in thrift stores, often “new” in box. Some are my old toys or my husbands old toys. I don’t think I’ve paid more than $10 for a single piece. Been collecting for years. Recently had my collection appraised by a toy expert here in Las Vegas and the value is more than my house is worth.

    • Stacy F (Hip2Save Sidekick)

      Wow! Now, that would be cool to see!

  15. kayla

    All the walls of our basement is full of old transformers. My boyfriend collects them from his childhood. Wish I could share pictures

  16. Joy

    The two Care Bears shown are actually super hard to find because they were only sold in UK and Australia.

  17. Suz OH

    I have a Battleship game (well used) that I kept because the box is very politically incorrect, for lack of better term. “Dad and son” are the main picture on the box shown happily playing the game and in the upper corner is a small picture of “mom and daughter” doing dishes. Recently saw retro version of this toy for sale in a store selling new toys and that picture of mom and girl was replaced/covered. Am thinking mine belongs in a museum somewhere.

  18. Amy

    I have my original My Little Pony stable with a bunch of ponies. I loved playing with it when I was little, and now I love watching my daughter play with it!

  19. Jodi E.

    The coin video was quite helpful. I inherited some coins recently. Right now they are in the safe deposit box because I don’t know what to do with them.

  20. terridolbintierney

    My original Grumpy Bear Care Bear from the 80’s still sleeps on my bed. He’s been with me longer than my husband. When I was a wildland firefighter many years ago I opened my gear bag in my tent and discovered my husband had packed him when I wasn’t looking.

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