Do you know if your coins are rare and worthy of collecting? While there is no substitute for a professional grader, there are a few steps you can take to arrive at a reasonable conclusion to the collectability of a coin. Read on to learn more.
The first step to take is to locate a book or online resource that covers the value of old and rare coins in detail. A good guide or online resource should detail every denomination of coin related to those in your collection. For example, if you have a large collection of pennies from the late 1800's to the middle part of the 20th century, the guide should provide a comprehensive list of these coins so you can cross-reference them.
An uncirculated coin is going to invariably be worth more than one that has been circulated. The way to tell the difference between the two is essentially reviewing the wear and tear of the coin. Circulated coins that have gone from cash registers to people's pockets to pinball machines and so on for the course of 75 years are going to be in a lot more used shape than coins that went from the mint to one collector to another. Look closely at the condition of your coin. If it looks pristine or near-pristine, the chances are the coin is uncirculated.
Go through your entire collection and keep a log of the type of coins that you have along with the year that it was minted. Then return to your guide and look up the various coins to get as much information as you can on its value. While time-consuming, the process of doing the above could lead to the discovery of a coin worth a lot of money that you never even knew you owned.
When you are ready to add to your coin collection, visit U.S. Auction Online to make a bid, or you can register to view winning bids to get an idea of the value of the coins in your current collection.