LEGO® kits have fascinated and enthralled children since they were first introduced in 1932. A creative and challenging toy, these building bricks enable a child’s imagination to run riot and develop concentration, as well as hand-eye co-ordination and fine motor skills. These colourful little bricks look as fresh and appealing as they did when first manufactured. It’s no wonder that there’s a large and growing fan-base of adult collectors who buy and sell second-hand LEGO®.
For most of the company’s history, LEGO® was regarded as a children’s toy. But in the early noughties, when the company began to explore the adult market in a serious way, they began developing many large sets with high price tags. Rarity, detail and demand are cited as reasons for the increased interest and value in LEGO® collectibles.
As a matter of fact, the highest sale price ever achieved was $15,000 for the LEGO® Ultimate Collector’s Series Millennium Falcon, although it was a first-edition set and sold in an airtight case in Las Vegas, all of which no doubt helped to bump up the price. Sadly, a re-released version that came out in 2017 has devalued the set, according to pundits. Its current value is around $1,679, with only one sold in the last nine months.
If you have unwanted sets or bricks lying around at home that you’d like to sell or you’re considering trading LEGO®, it’s worth finding out what resale prices the various types could command. You can get an initial idea from a website such as www.sellmybricks.com and similar recycling sites. Obviously, the rarer a piece the more valuable it will be.
If you want to trade, you will need to decide what to buy. If you’d like to specialise in sets, look for the less common larger sets, e.g. modular buildings, winter sets and special editions; or the smaller ‘ideas’ sets; or a set that contains a unique mini-figure (even better, one in a special edition) such as characters from Harry Potter or Star Wars. Gaining in popularity now are the vintage sets no longer made, such as the Modulars which contain items such as the Greengrocer, the Town Hall and Fire Station. Or you may prefer to buy bundles of bricks and rely on pot luck. Look for special offers on the internet and consider also charity shops, car boot sales and auctions.
If you have a job-lot assortment of bricks, you can bag them up or sort them according to type. To get the best price, your LEGO® should be clean and sanitised － no-one wants to handle grubby unhygienic bricks. You should be able to remove dirt by washing the bricks in lukewarm water with some detergent and a few drops of disinfectant added, using a soft brush such as an old toothbrush. If the dirt is ground-in, leave the bricks to soak in a soapy solution for 24 hours. Then rinse thoroughly and leave them to dry naturally spread out on a towel for up to 48 hours.
Don’t be tempted to use the washing machine or dishwasher to clean the bricks as too great a heat will warp and fade the plastic. However, if you have a vast quantity of bricks to clean, put them in a net bag and choose the lowest temperature setting. You can clean a set with a fine artist’s brush and/or a hair drier on a cool setting.
You may have some pieces that look dull and foggy. This is caused by minor scratches and can be treated by dipping the piece in a bath of liquid acrylic. Let it dry and polish the brick with a soft cloth. Then you’re all set to go.
The specialist retailer, www.sellmybricks.com, offers the most competitive prices in the LEGO® recycling market, so you can be sure you’ll receive the best value for your sets or bricks. And the process couldn’t be simpler. If you’re selling bricks, pop them into a plastic bag and tie or seal it. Weigh the bag, round it up to the nearest 0.5kg and enter the weight in the search bar to get an instant price. Alternatively, if you’re selling a set, enter the type or name in the search bar. If you’re happy with the price offered, send the company your LEGO® and once it’s confirmed as genuine, you’ll receive a fast same day payment.
Don’t forget to look in those dusty storage boxes and neglected drawers and cupboards! You could be in for a pleasant surprise!