If you have a coin collection, or you come across a coin and you became interested in starting a collection, it is likely that you want to know what it’s worth. People collect coins for a variety of reasons. Sometimes, this is simply because they look good. At other times, it is because the coins value means that they are a good investment. Understanding these values, however, is quite complex as there are many different grading systems to be used.
Before a price can be given, the coins value has to be determined. This is done by gathering information about different coins and speaking to people with numismatic expertise. This will ensure that you can get a good deal as well. If you haven’t been collecting for a long time yet, then you should consider reading the different materials that exist, including on the internet. Doing so will enable you to learn about the different marks and traits that dealers also look for.
Once you have built an understanding of coin grading, you could consider simply taking your collection and having it appraised. This will give you a good indication of the coins value, although you should have it appraised in numerous locations in order to really get an idea of what it is worth. Remember that coin dealers are generally interested in buying your coins, after which they would want to make a profit, which means they will tend to give you a lower value compared a coin’s real value.
It is also important to remember that the value of a coin will depend on its physical condition. It may be tempting to make a dirty coin look shiny and new again, but you should never try to clean it yourself because doing so could cause damage and lessen its value. Instead, have the coin valued in its original state, letting the dealer determine whether it should be cleaned or not.
How Coins Value Is Determined:
There are a number of factors that will determine what a coin is worth, including:
- How rare the coin is, which is a major factor.
- The grade or condition of the coin.
- The current value of the bullion, which is the precious metal the coin is made out of.
- The demand for that particular coin.
- The quality of the coin.
Naturally, the better the quality of the coin, the faster it will be sold as well. Hence, quality is a major factor to consider, not just so that you can enjoy the beauty of the coin, but also to ensure that it will give you a good return should you wish to sell it. Coin collections are investments, so focusing on quality is always important.
Why Collect Coins:
A lot of people collect coins because it is fun, and it gives them a piece of history to hold and touch. Of course, the fact that these collections also make for good investments is just an added bonus. It is actually quite common for people to start one to get their children interested in collecting things, only to keep holding on to it themselves and creating a type of inheritance or trust for once the children reach a certain age.
Should you own a coin collection, either through your own efforts or because you were given one, you should have the collection valued, even if you don’t want to sell it. This will give you a chance to see which coins you have that are particularly rare, or of a particularly good grade. You may also find, quite shockingly, that your collection actually isn’t worth much. This is because people take the wrong approach to building a coin collection. They assume, for instance, that Roman coins and other such ancient coins are incredibly valuable. In reality, however, they aren’t rare at all because they were mass produced.
Four key factors will determine coins value:
- Scarcity, which means how rare it is. Take, for instance, the 1877 Indian head cent, for which you can get several hundred dollars. The 1865 coin, however, will only give you between $10 and $20. It might be older but it is also a lot more common. Age and rarity are not the same thing, in other words. It all depends on how many coins were minted at that time, and how many of those have survived. Scarcity is closely linked to condition as well. For instance, the drachma, which is the Ancient Greek coin, is not very rare. However, the vast majority of these coins are corroded, so it is rare to find one in a good condition. If this is what you have, then it is classed as a scarce, and hence high value, coin.
- The grade or condition of the coin is also very important. A specialized grading system, known as the Sheldon Scale, is used for this. Dealers and collectors all over the world agree to use this system, which means there is a unilateral value associated with coins.
- Supply and demand, as there are periods of time in which common coins suddenly become in high demand. For instance, take the Morgan Dollar that was minted between 1878 and 1904. These coins are common, but people document and research these all the time. This means that they are quite valuable as well, since people want to buy them.
- The content of precious metal. Generally speaking, a gold or silver coin will be worth more than simply its weight in gold or silver. As such, the bullion adds extra value, rather than determining its value. If you buy a precious metal coin, you have to make sure that it has been slabbed or graded. This means that a professional has graded them and that the coins are genuine.
Before you consider selling your personal collection, take a look at auction sites and other online places to see what others have sold your specific coins before. Do also have it professionally appraised. However, even with all of that, the collection will only sell for what people are willing to pay for it.