Is the LEGO Icons Haunted House (10273) a Good Investment Set?
27th February 2023
The Haunted House is due to retire at the end of 2023, which doesn't give you long to add it to your collection. In this article, we look to take a deep dive into the set's investment potential to find out whether it's likely to go up in value post-retirement.
The Haunted House was released under the Fairground Collection subtheme, and thus depicts a spooky fairground attraction. The house is the former home of Baron Von Barron, who was a recurring villain that appeared in Desert and Dino Island Adventurers sets between 1998 and 2000. Proof of this is the large portrait of the Baron, which sits in one of the roof spaces and can be illuminated.
The Manor von Barron is also filled with artefacts the supervillain stole, that reference objects found in past Adventurers sets. Examples of just a few of these are statues depicted the head of Anubis, as seen in 5938 Oasis Ambush, a Sphinx head from 5978 Sphinx Secret Surprise, and an obelisk with hieroglyphics, like those seen in 5958 Mummy's Tomb. Personally, I love it when LEGO harks back to classic sets, as it adds a lovely sense of nostalgia.
The central feature of the house is a drop tower, which functions very well, albeit the mechanism is prone to catching if bricks aren't aligned perfectly. As well as all the references, there is fantastic detail both inside and out, that makes this a high-quality model.
If you're looking for a set that will look great on display, then the Haunted House is hard to beat. As a playable set, it could be improved, as many of the internal rooms lack accessibility. However, it's still a very impressive build that will appeal to many AFOLs.
Value for Money
The Haunted House retails for £259.99 / $299.99 / €299.99 and has a piece count of 3,231. Sadly, this set has fallen foul of LEGO's price increases last year that pushed up its price per piece to 8.0p / 9.3c, which is at the top end for Icons sets. However, when you consider how big the final model is, it goes some way to making the RRP more acceptable, but it's not a bargain by any stretch.
The minifigures are not a reason to buy this set, as there are very few unique parts amongst the 10 that're included. The only exclusive element is the headpiece of the two ghosts. This was to be expected, as other sets in the Fairground Collection subtheme also lack individualism in their minifigure offering. However, that hasn't stopped some of those souring in value, so don't be put off by this.
There's not a sticker in sight in this set, which means there's a generous helping of exclusive and rare parts. This won't be the sole reason people want to buy the Haunted House, but it does help make it a unique set and adds to its premium feel, which is good from an investment perspective.
Icons and Creator Expert sets have traditionally done well on the aftermarket, which is not surprising given their quality and adult appeal. Therefore, the Haunted House is already off to a promising start.
A good indicator of how well the Haunted House might do after it retires, can be gauged from previous Fairground Collection sets. The Roller Coaster (10261) was the latest of these to retire at the end of 2022, and now has a value roughly that of its RRP. This is somewhat surprising and could be a red flag for the Haunted House. However, the Carousel (10261) and Ferris Wheel (10261) have both seen very healthy profits.
Something that might benefit this set is that I feel like it's gone under the radar a bit, which means fewer units being shipped, and greater rarity later down the line. However, this is just a hunch of mine, as LEGO doesn't release sales data. I also think it's strong nostalgia value could give it the push it needs on the secondary market.
Investment opportunity: Good
The Haunted House is a striking, high-quality set, that's likely to appeal to many AFOLs. Previous Fairground Collection sets have performed strongly on the secondary market, which bodes well for this set.
My only reservations are the reasonably long shelf life (2.5 years) and the fact that the most recent Fairground set, the Roller Coaster (10261), hasn't gone up in value as much as people expected. However, the Haunted House is a more appealing set and I think there's some good profit to be made on it.
Disclaimer: This article or any others on brickranker.com should not be considered financial advice and investing in LEGO is risky.
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