The global coin collection market amounts to a whopping $17 billion annually. This is most certainly a market with much promise and allure. Coin collecting is a fun and rewarding hobby, but it can also be expensive if you make mistakes.
If you’re just starting coin collections, there are certain things you need to know. If you want to maximize the value of your collection, you need to avoid inevitable mistakes.
In this blog post, we’ll discuss the most common errors in coin collecting and how to avoid them. So whether you’re a beginner or an experienced collector, make sure to read this post.
1) Not Being Able To Identify Fakes
One of the biggest dangers in coin collecting is being taken advantage of by sellers who offer fakes or counterfeits instead of genuine coins. As a collector, it’s crucial to be able to identify these counterfeits and know how to avoid them. There are a few key things you can look for:
- Differences in weight and size
- Differences in design and engraving
- Poor quality of metal or details
If you’re not sure if a coin is genuine or not, it’s always best to consult with an expert. The American Numismatic Association offers free online resources that can help you learn how to identify counterfeit coins, including a guide to common fakes and forgeries.
You can also take your coins to a coin dealer or numismatist to get them authenticated and appraised. If you do end up purchasing a fake coin, it’s essential to report it to the authorities.
2) Selling Too Quickly
One of the main reasons coin collectors get into the hobby is to make money. Unlike other hobbies, such as stamp collecting or bird watching, where you can enjoy the activity without any financial gain, coin collecting has the potential to be profitable. However, if you sell your coins too quickly, you may not realize the full value of your collection.
It’s always a good idea to get an appraisal from a reputable coin dealer before selling your coins. This will give you an idea of what the coins are worth and help you get the best price possible. Keep in mind that dealers usually offer less than the fair market value for a collection, so comparing coin costs is vital before you finally sell.
If you’re not in a hurry to sell, consider putting your coins up for auction. This will give you more time to receive bids from interested buyers and get the best price possible. Remember, it’s important to be patient when selling coins and get the most value for your collection.
Also, a coin’s value is not just based on its rarity and condition. It’s also crucial to consider the demand for that particular coin. If you have a rare coin in poor condition, it may still be worth more than a common coin in excellent condition.
It’s also a good idea to sell your coins in batches, rather than all at once. Finally, never sell your coins to the first person who offers to buy them. Take your time and shop around for the best deal.
3) Improper Cleaning Of Your Coins
One of the quickest ways to devalue your coins is by improperly cleaning them. This can be done either accidentally or on purpose. When you think about it, there’s really no need to clean most coins. If a coin does require some cleaning, though, take it to a professional.
There are many incorrect ways to clean coins, but some of the most common ones are as follows:
- Soaking in water or any other cleaning solution
- Using abrasive materials, such as toothpaste, steel wool, Brasso, etc
- Wiping with a cloth that has been treated with a cleaning solution
- Rubbing the coin with your fingers
All of these methods will likely do more harm than good and may even remove important details or render the coin unrecognizable. In some cases, coins have been ruined beyond repair by improper cleaning. So please, just don’t do it!
Coin cleaning should only be attempted by those with the proper knowledge and equipment. Keep in mind that different coins require different cleaning methods. For example, copper and bronze coins should never be cleaned with anything other than soap and water.
On the other hand, silver coins can be cleaned with a variety of solutions, including silver dip. If you’re starting coin collections, it’s highly advisable you avoid cleaning your coins and instead submit them to professionals.
4) Improper Coin Storage
Storing coin collections is one of the most imperative aspects of coin collection. If you don’t have a place to store your coins, they’ll eventually get damaged. The most common type of damage is caused by oxidation (or rust).
Coins stored in airtight containers, such as coin tubes or flips, will not oxidize as quickly as those exposed to the open air. However, even if you store your coins in airtight containers, they’ll eventually rust over time. The best way to store your coins long-term is by using a coin album or holder.
Albums and holders come in various sizes and can accommodate almost any collection size. They are also acid-free, which means the coins stored inside them will not corrode over time. If you’re starting coin collections, you can also consider getting a safe or keeping them in a safety deposit box at the bank.
5) Not Joining A Coin Collecting Community
Coin collecting can be a very solitary hobby, but it can also be more fun and rewarding if you join a coin collecting community. Not joining a community is one of the top errors in coin collecting. There are many online forums and communities where collectors can share information, tips, and advice.
This is a great way to learn more about coins and connect with other people who share your interests. You’ll learn who the best dealers are, how to avoid fakes, how to handle rare coins, and so much more.
6) Buying Coins Without Research
One of the biggest errors in coin collecting involves buying coins without doing any research. If you don’t know anything about a coin, you won’t be able to determine its value. Before making any purchase, take the time to learn about the coin’s history, condition, and rarity.
It’ll help you make an informed decision and avoid overpaying for a coin. Doing thorough research will help you get better prices. It’ll help you learn about the mint marks, key dates, and errors that others could miss.
This will help you know how to spot rare coins and make your stash super valuable. There are many types of coins, including Custom Challenge Coins. Do research online, visit your local library or numismatic society, and read books and magazines about coin collecting to learn more about specific coins.
The Worst Errors In Coin Collecting You Could Be Making
Avoiding these errors in coin collecting will help you have a successful coin collection. By following the tips in this article, you can protect your coins from damage and ensure that they retain their value over time.
So please, take the time to learn about coins before making any purchases, and always ask questions if you’re unsure about something. The numismatic community is full of experts who are happy to help.
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