I've been buying records since 1998 and I started selling around 2005/6. If something is really valuable, I'll probably sell it. But here's some stuff I kept:
I found a lady in a FB group selling her old records. I offered to pay her around $20 per LP, which was ludicrous. But it was Starflyer 59's Gold, Fashion Focus, Everybody Makes Mistakes and MXPX's Slowly Going The Way of the Buffalo, On the Cover 10" and Teenage Politics and most were sealed. There were other LP's and 7"s that weren't as fun. I paid her $230 or so but I basically paid $12 per LP after it was done because I had gotten a total of twenty records.
I worked at a record store for store credit for a couple years. I got 2nd state Velvet Underground and Nico in supreme condition for $400 in store credit that I acquired while working. Since working in a store then was just fun, it was basically free.
Saves The Day - Through Being Cool (long before repressed) for $2 because I bought a collection and it was in it. Paid about $200 for about 100 LP collection.
My friend Hunter texted me on a random Wednesday night that he was going to look at records by me. I had my son with my that night and I didn't want to drag him out on a school night, but it wasn't that far from my place. It was this lady who was living in an efficiency and 1/5 of the room was filled with records. We spent an hour in there and I got some cool things but I finally found a 50's pressing of Miles Davis - Birth of the Cool in the wild. Paid $5.
Stuff I sold:
I've never sold anything over 1K which is a goal I'm striving for, but I've still had some incredible luck. Bought a collection of 1,100 LP's last summer and it was the best thing I've scored. Paid $500 which was a lot of money at the time. But I got this LP. Only recently reissued and still selling $400+ (haven't sold mine yet): https://www.discogs.com/Alice-Clark-Alice-Clark/release/558515
Do you know the guy who played bass for Sun Ra? Me either, but this solo LP on ESP nets $200.
This jazz record was in there. Always goes for a $100-250:
Southern University, an HBCU in Baton Rogue, released a few LP's of their jazz band in the 70's (directed by NOLA's own Alvin Batiste) and these are highly sought after. This one was in this collection. I haven't sold it yet either because I'm hoping to track down another cover because mine is thrashed. But it should net me a few hundred even in the terrible shape it's in:
Other stuff -
A lady I bought some 45's off a couple years ago emailed me out of the blue to tell me she had more 45's. I was broke, broke and her description of what was there wasn't enticing. I paid her $80 for a few hundred junk 45's. But this was there and I wasn't sure if it was the bootleg at first or not. I sold this first Elvis Sun 45 for $700 at a record show:
I also got this 45 in the collection too. I still have it but it's in my sale box. Rare NOLA funk record:
Lastly, and what was probably initially my most defeated but ultimately rewarding moment: Stopped by a thrift store one morning after a meeting at work. Come upon the records and see a guy who just had opened a junk shop filling a cart with hundreds of records. I look and it's good jazz. Miles Davis and John Coltrane. But then it was random common shit like Jefferson Airplane in his basket too. I started looking through the stacks and nothing decent is left. "I just scored big time" the guy proclaimed and I grumbled to myself and congratulated him, wishing I didn't have to work a stupid real job that doesn't allow me to show up at thrift stores when they open. But flipping more, I noticed a Coleman Hawkins record that was a first pressing and at one time went for a couple hundred smackers. I thought it was weird the junk store dude didn't grab it. Any jazz collector knows The Hawk Flies High. But then there were other imports and things that were decent just not amazing. I figured the guy just grabbed stuff he recognized, so I kept looking. You know how you see a record and you can just tell it's a thing? Go look through enough records and it's all the same stuff forever and ever. Welp, came across this rare Brazilian jazz LP that I paid $2.12 w/ tax for and I sold it for this. Sent it to Japan with no tracking or anything in 2016 (which was dumb) and everything turned out fine (this was my BIN):