THEY say one man’s trash is another’s treasure – so could those forgotten items in your loft actually be worth a fortune?
Antiques expert Mark Hill has revealed just how much money you could make in the auction room by raiding your attic.
The Antiques Roadshow star has identified 10 valuable items that could be gathering dust in your home.
From costume jewellery to early computer games, there could be a whole lot of cash in your attic that you aren’t even aware of.
Mark says items that were once considered to be “bog-standard by one generation, can seem extraordinary to the next”.
He added that it’s a combination of condition, age, rarity and desirability that makes an item valuable.
“Many people furnishing their homes don’t want things they grew up with – but what Granny had is now cool,” he says.
As well as rarity and fashion trends, supply and demand are key factors that will determine just how much your forgotten treasures could fetch.
“If the supply is low and the demand is high, prices rise – often dramatically if the item is ‘in fashion’.
“Similarly, if demand is low and supply is high, prices fall,” says Mark.
He has shared 10 commonplace items that could be worth much more than you’d expect.
Popular names from 1930s onwards are highly desirable, according to Mark.
These include vintage items by American jewellery designer Miriam Haskell.
Her necklaces are currently being sold for up to £3,400.
So raid your old jewellery box for necklaces and earrings you’d forgotten about or disregarded as junk – they could actually be a diamond in the rough.
While the condition of a medal is important in the auction room, the significance of its backstory is often more valuable, says Mark.
A Distinguished Service Cross – a military decoration awarded to officers of the British Armed Forces – sold for an eye-watering £120,000 in 2011.
Even if you don’t have any medals in the loft yourself, you could keep an eye out for them at car boot sales.
First edition books
Mark says it’s well worth checking your bookcases to see if you have any valuable first editions hiding behind new books.
Harry Potter first edition books have been known to sell for a staggering £80,000.
And it’s also worth checking if you own any lesser-known titles like The Very Hungry Caterpillar.
A first edition of the popular children’s book by Eric Carle has previously sold for £2,439.
While you may have ditched your paperbacks in favour of a Kindle or tablet, make sure you don’t ditch your physical copies as they could soon become priceless classics.
If you collect coins in your spare time, your hobby might just pay off.
Coins with a historical value are particularly valuable, says Mark.
The Olympic Aquatics Line 50p coin, released in 2011, is currently listed on eBay for £700.
You can get an idea of how rare you coin is by checking how many of them are in circulation using sites like ChangeChecker.
Scour eBay to see how much similar coins have previously sold for.
Your old childhood comic books could be worth a small fortune at auction.
A comic book featuring the first ever appearance of Spider-Man, titled Amazing Fantasy #15, sold for an unbelievable £2.75 million in 2021.
It is the most expensive comic book ever sold.
Your old Beano and Dandy editions might not fetch quite as much, but they could be appealing to collectors.
Antique maps capturing particular areas are likely to hold their value.
A 1804 map of the county of Stafford has been sold for just under £500.
So do check your bookshelf or loft for forgotten Ordnance Survey maps or more niche finds – if you think you’ve found something of value you could ask a local auctioneer for an opinion.
Modern and contemporary art is just as popular now as it ever was.
The value of these types of works can start at £1,000 and increase significantly over time.
If you think you have a particularly unusual piece hiding in your home, consider taking it a trained specialist to help you find out how much it is worth.
If you know who owned it before and who the artist is, this can help in determining how much cash the art might fetch at auction.
There can be a huge market for vintage glass items, says Mark.
But popular 1930s vases are particularly valuable – and you might just have one sitting at home.
You can use online price guides to help you categorise your antiques and find out their potential value.
Antique ceramics can be worth thousands of pounds and are relatively affordable to collect.
Items by English ceramic’s manufacturerr Royal Doulton can go for big money at auction.
Mark says: “It’s worth checking your cupboards for antique Royal Doulton pieces, such as dogs, that could be worth well over a
Rare pieces of tribal art can turn out to be a very
Some tribal figurines are currently listed on online auction websites at more than £400.
If you don’t own any piece of tribal art, you could visit some junk shops or car boots sales, and see if they have any treasures on sale.
One collector was left “gobsmacked” after he found out that a “creepy” tribal mask he found at a junk shop was actually worth up to £5,000.
It’s also worth considering checking out online marketplaces like eBay to see if you could make hundreds from your unwanted junk.
Around three-quarters of Brits are selling items from around the house to raise some extra cash.
And according to Ebay, you could pocket as much as £1,106 if you pick the right items to sell.
Selling your unwanted belongings at a car boot sale is also a great way to make some extra cash.
You could come away from the sale with hundreds of pounds, but there are some tips in this guide from The Sun to make things easier.