Top 10 Interesting Facts About Old Coins and Their Value

If your life took an interesting turn and you landed you uncle’s old coin collection, you need to know if these are actually worth keeping. This article will help you learn interesting facts about old coins and their value. Sure, you can take your old gold coins to a coin dealer or an antique shop, but it helps doing your homework before you choose this route to make sure you are getting the top dollar for them.

1. Most old coins and their value factors are in direct correlation with their grade or condition. A coin grade is perhaps the top determining factor for its value. Circulated pieces, in poorer physical shape due to considerable use wear, are valued much less compared to non-circulated ones.

2. Coin’s rarity is another determining factor of its value. Generally, there are two types of coin rarities, namely, mintage and grade. Mintage rarities are determined by the actual quantities in which certain coins were produced. The lower the mintage, the higher the ratio of old coins and their value. Grade rarity, on the other hand, is a very volatile concept and is assessed only within a certain time frame and is based on numismatic market grade market demands.

3. Demand is a true driving force for old coins and their value determination. Research a number of online auctions to see what your types of lots are selling for and whether there is a true demand for them. Sometimes it pays to wait and try looking up your coins’ value some other time in hopes that they might eventually increase in price.

4. Interestingly, a coin’s age is not a value determining factor. There have been instances when old German gold coins or old British coins were sold for the mere market price of gold due to abundance of similar pieces on the market.

5. If the old coins in your collection are a part of a registry set that were registered with two major coin rating agencies like PCGS or NGC, the registry set concept can surprisingly drive up prices of even not so rare and seemingly insignificant coins.

6. Coin’s quality should not be taken out of consideration while assessing old coins and their value. When a coin possesses beautiful characteristics like overall design, strike, and aesthetic appeal, it’s going to be valued much higher even if it’s not at the top of a registry list.

7. You are likely to get much more for your old coins if the market prices for silver and gold are on the rise. Rest assured that even if your silver and gold coins do not have much collector value, you are at least going to get the bullion value out of them.

8. Cleaning coins is a big no-no among professional numismatists since most of them prefer to acquire pieces in the unaltered condition. Amateur cleaning is believed to destroy a coin’s surface.

9. Turning old coins into coin jewelry or modifying them in any way will drastically drive their values down and might irreversibly damage your pieces. Think of it as turning a Monet’s painting into a wall paper – almost never a good idea!

10. Coins storage environment is another important factor that directly affects their value. Handle your coins with love and preferably with cloth gloved hands. Avoid stacking your coins since it may lead to surface damage, scratches and scuffs. Individual acetate pockets are the best way to store your precious coins.

Assessing old coins is not an easy task – it takes a trained eye, attention to details and a great deal of interest to research your coins’ multiple parameters. However, you might be greatly awarded along the way by finding rare coins that are going to be precious additions to your collection or gold investment package.

For information on Napoleon gold coins or any other international coins, please refer to our other articles on the website.