We Buy Records

  • Do you have records you haven’t listened to in years?
  • Are you moving soon and need to downsize?
  • Are you cleaning out a relative’s house and found records?

Our humble shop is fueled by great people bringing us great records. Since our inventory is 95% used vinyl, we always need more music in our crates, and we love to talk to people about helping share their music with the next generation.

Our goal is to make your record selling experience a hassle-free, honest and satisfying one. No pressure, no low-ball offers, no tricks to try and lower the prices we pay. We want you to be as happy as the new owners of your albums will be, with our help in between.

Call 617-420-6002 (you can also text to this number), or send us an email at shop@wantlistrecords.com with any questions you have. And keep reading below for more information about our Buying Process.

Want List Records seller quotes

“I’ve dealt with multiple people on Craigslist and at record shops [selling my record collection] and [Want List] was the best experience I’ve had so far… Other shops basically insulted me as if I was on an episode of ‘Pawn Stars’ … you’ll be amazed at the difference between what [they offer] and big city shops.” 
Vincent J, Google Review, June 2022

“You made everything so easy! I’m delighted to think that my albums will be finding new homes.” 
Lauren B, October 2022

“This place is a treasure.” 
Rob H, Google Review, January 2022

“I love going to [Want List], they always have good stuff. They [along with Village Vinyl & HiFi and Residency Records] are knowledgeable and helpful and, at the end of the day they are there for the customers. They want to spread music to people.” 
Christian C, “Talk About The Passion” podcast, October 2022

It’s all about the condition

Collectors that buy records are very particular, and have developed a system over the years to grade each album based on the condition. Want List’s main point of differentiation from other stores in the area is that all of our records are very clean and scuff-/scratch-free. Considering this, condition of the records is the most important part of our buying equation.

Records that are in good condition and have an appeal to other collectors [see the list of “Artists / Record Labels We Buy”] are more valuable, and we pay a higher price for them. For example: Miles Davis, The Cure, Bob Marley, Van Halen, John Coltrane, The Smiths, Fela Kuti.

Records that are in poor condition and/or are more common titles [Peter, Paul & Mary; Bob Seger; Herb Alpert & The Tijuana Brass; for example], are worth less, even though they may be great albums that sold millions of copies in their day.

Records damaged by mold, heavy smoking, water, heat, or animals do not have value anymore. Remember what we mentioned earlier about how particular collectors can be.

Frequently asked questions

Do you buy 78s or CDs?
We do not buy 78’s. We are very interested in CDs.

What about 45s, Cassettes and 8-Tracks?
We do buy 45s, especially if they are in good condition. Most of the 45s in our store are priced at $1.00, so we can’t pay much for 45s. But we are happy to make sure they don’t end up in a landfill! When it comes to Cassettes and 8-Tracks, we are very selective about what we buy, but we do indeed buy them, especially smaller label releases and genres / sub-genres like gospel, “world” music, jazz, punk and “alternative” music.

Will you take everything I have to sell, or will you just pick out 2-3 albums and then I have to take the rest back home?
We are happy to make you an offer on all of the records you do not want any more. With that being said, our offer will most likely be based on a smaller number of records in any given collection that have more of a chance of selling in our shop. A smaller percentage of that offer would be in a “second tier” pile. We always give people the option to take back any records that we offer them less money for. But if you want to be rid of everything, we are happy to help with that, to make sure that your music doesn’t end up in a landfill!

Will you come to my house, or do I have to bring my records over to you in Newton?
If you are not able to bring all of your records to us (for example, physically), we may be able to come to you and make a “housecall.” It depends on scheduling and geography. Many times, we first ask people who have several hundred records to bring in a representative box (50 or 75 albums) so we can see if it would be worth us traveling out to make the house call.

Do you buy electronic equipment (turntables, receivers, speakers)?
Because we are a small store, we can only carry 1-2 pieces of electronic equipment at any given time, so we are very selective in what we buy. But we do buy electronic equipment. What we suggest is that you email or text us photos of the equipment before bringing it into the shop: shop@wantlistrecords.com and/or 617-420-6002 (you can send texts to this number, or call).

Sample of artists we buy for the store

  • David Bowie
  • Van Halen
  • Black Sabbath / Ozzy Osbourne
  • Talking Heads
  • Neil Young
  • The Cure
  • The Smiths
  • The Replacements
  • The Beatles
  • Rolling Stones
  • Joni Mitchell
  • Nirvana
  • Soundgarden
  • Fleetwood Mac
  • Pearl Jam
  • Radiohead
  • Brian Eno
  • The Stooges / Iggy Pop
  • Ramones
  • Johnny Cash
  • Kraftwerk
  • Roxy Music
  • King Crimson
  • Black Flag
  • T-Rex
  • Nick Drake
  • Dead Kennedys
  • Tom Waits
  • Frank Zappa
  • James Brown
  • Otis Redding
  • Aretha Franklin
  • Parliament / Funkadelic
  • Sly & The Family Stone
  • Gil Scott – Heron
  • Rufus Thomas
  • Howlin’ Wolf
  • John Lee Hooker
  • Willie Dixon
  • The Meters
  • Dr. John
  • Professor Longhair
  • John Coltrane / Alice Coltrane
  • Miles Davis
  • Rahsaan Roland Kirk
  • Sun Ra
  • Gil Evans
  • Pharoah Sanders
  • Charles Mingus
  • Elvin Jones
  • Thelonious Monk
  • Fela Kuti
  • Bob Marley
  • Peter Tosh
  • Tito Puente
  • Ray Barretto
  • Joe Cuba
  • Ebenezer Obey
  • Gilberto Gil 
  • Gal Costa
  • Joao Gilberto
  • Caetano Veloso
  • Hamza El Din
  • Public Enemy
  • N.W.A.
  • Run-DMC
  • Biz Markie
  • Wu-Tang Clan
  • De La Soul
  • Beastie Boys
  • DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince
  • Ice-T
  • Ice Cube

Sample of record labels that we buy for the store

  • Stax
  • Blue Note
  • Prestige
  • Fania / Tico
  • Casablanca
  • Elektra
  • Deutsche Gramophone (original issues with roses on labels)
  • Sire
  • Cold Chillin’
  • Ruthless
  • Tommy Boy
  • Def Jam
  • Trojan
  • RAS
  • Shanachie
  • Chess
  • Folkways
  • SST
  • Impulse!
  • Vertigo
  • Heartbeat
  • 2 Tone
  • Strata East
  • Black Jazz
  • Nimbos
  • ON-U Sound / Pressure Sounds
  • VP
  • Inner City