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Rare Coins

How To Spot A Rare Coin

8 Little Known Secrets to Spot a Rare Coin

Do you remember as a kid when your grandparents, or maybe even your parents had  coins everywhere?  They swore they were important.  Or maybe those infomercials advertising a commemorative coin for someone famous.  When I was a little girl I would spend one week up north with my family each summer, and every year since I could remember I would go for one day to my Pop-Pop’s (Grandfather’s) house.  What used to be the most boring day to me then, is now one of my most treasured memories.  Every year we did the same thing, my Pop-Pop would collect special coins throughout the year.  He would roll out that old poker table, I would pull up a couple of chairs and there we would sit for hours sorting away! 

In this article we are going to break down 8 little known methods you can try out to spot a rare coin in your collection at home!  Keep reading for more.

  1. The Older the Better
    • Generally, coins that are older in age have a greater potential of being valuable.  This is because they are most likely no longer minted.  Also, quarters, dimes, half-dollars and dollars before the year 1964 were all made out of silver.  Therefore, they hold more value due to their precious metal content. 
  2. Mint Mark
    • A Mint Mark is as shown, the mark that indicated geographically where a coin was minted. Some mint marks are highly sought after and rare, usually these mint marks fetch a higher premium. The most valuable mint mark to look for would be the CC mint mark. This indicates the coin was minted in Carson City, Nevada.
  3. Gold Over Silver
    • The most valuable coins minted years ago were made out of gold or silver. Since gold is worth more than silver it is standard that a gold coin will typically hold more value.
  4. Condition of the Coin
    • Not to be confused with the cleanliness of the coin (because cleaning a coin does actually hurt the value) but rather, the wear and tear on the coin. A coin in good condition won’t have any dings or dents and all of the original details of the coin will still be easily visible, not worn down.

Now that you have identified a potentially valuable coin, here is four additional steps you can take to ensure you get the most money for your coin. These next four steps will help you secure the confidence that your piece(s) are holding financial value.

  1. Coin Care
    • These following are things to consider in caring for your coin(s):
      1. DO NOT clean or polish your coin
      2. DO NOT rub or scratch your coin
      3. DO keep your coin in a safe place, free from contamination and abrasive materials
  2. Talk to a Trusted Professional
    • Once you have determined you may have a coin of value and it is in a safe spot, it is time to find someone you can trust to help you evaluate your coins value. We suggest finding your local Gold & Silver Pawn Shop or your local Coin Dealer. Make sure to check Google Reviews and do your research on these businesses beforehand. Also, for current information on all things Pawn, Gold and Silver, check out The Pawnbroker Network.
  3. To Sell or Not To Sell
    • Now that you have determined you have a coin of value, you will need to decide whether you wish to keep it or sell it. Some things to consider when selling a coin are:
      1. Is the sentimental value of the coin worth more than the coin itself?
      2. Will the coin go up in value over time?
      3. Will getting your coin certified increase the value?
  4. Getting Your Coin(s) Graded(Certified)
    • If you have determined that you have a coin(s) that is of significant value then it is probably wise to have it graded. If you decide to keep the coin, grading will ensure that your coin will maintain the condition of its current state. This process not only adds protection to your coin but offers certification of its legitimacy. PCGS and NGC are the Nations two leading coin grading services and your local Pawn or Coin Shop can assist you in getting your coin graded with these companies. If you decide to sell your coin, having it graded will ensure you receive the most money for your coin.

The More You Know – typically a Pawn Shop that buys precious metals may be the better place to sell your coin. The theory behind this is that Coin Shops have only one facet to make money, and that is buying coins. Therefore, a Coin Shop has to make a larger margin per transaction or deal. A Pawn Shop that deals in precious metals, on the other hand, has several other avenues to make money. A Pawn Shop can survive on a smaller margin per transaction or deal because they are involved in so many other facets. This means more money in your pocket for your coin!

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