How many people have a bunch of junk lying around their home – trinkets, knickknacks, boxes full of unworn jewellery – that rarely sees the light of day? So many, in fact, that every once and a while there’ll be a story about someone who discovered that the doorstop they’d been using for years was actually a meteorite worth $100k (yes, this actually happened).

It’s crazy to imagine that you might be sitting on treasures worth thousands of dollars without even realizing it. That’s why it’s worth it to take the time to sort through your old junk and take it to a store like Muzeum where they do free evaluations of items like old jewellery, gold and silver coins, comic books, war memorabilia, and more. You can even sell gold and other items for money. For all you know, you might end up like these people who made headlines because of their rare finds.

1. Diamond Ring worth $848k

In the 1980s a woman bought what she believed to be a costume ring from a car boot sale and kept it for decades before deciding to get it appraised. To her surprise, the £10 ($13) ring that she bought so many years ago was actually valued at £250,000 ($325,000) to £350,000 ($456,000). It’s suspected that the large diamond ring is from the 1800s and that it was probably owned by royalty. When the ring was eventually auctioned off it ended up being sold for £656,750 ($847,667). 

2. Million Dollar Declaration of Independence

Five hundred official copies of the Declaration of Independence were printed in 1776, and one man accidently stumbled across one when purchasing a painting at a flea market in 1989. The Declaration was hidden in the canvas, and when discovered not long after it was sold at an auction house for $2.42 million.

3. Rare Apple 1 Computer worth $200,000

A woman whose husband passed away wanted to clear out some old items from her garage, so she dropped off an old computer at an e-waste recycling firm. Not wanting to leave her name or even get a tax receipt, she left, not knowing that the computer was actually a rare Apple 1 Computer. The firm managed to sell the item for $200,000 at auction but were unable to get in touch with the woman to give her half of the money (as per their process).

4. $1.5 Million Lucky Break

A man named Loren Krytzer had just lost his leg in a near-fatal accident and was living off of merely $200 a month when he discovered that a blanket he had owned for years was actually worth millions of dollars. He found out after watching a similar blanket being valued at half a million dollars on the Antiques Roadshow, and ended up selling it at auction for $1.5 million.

Find Your Own Treasures

Look through your attic, basement, closets, and garage for items that might actually be treasures just waiting to be discovered. You never know what your item might be valued at after taking it to an appraiser.