Things you should know before selling your collectable coins
Many of us spend years or even decades building up a truly impressive coin collection. Whether you are keeping British gold coins as an investment, or you have always had a passion for rare collectable coins, sooner or later you’ll consider selling one or more of them. The thing is, that can be a tricky process. There are dozens of ways you could convert some or all of your rare British coins into more conventional cash, and hundreds of websites clamouring to be the one who helps you do it. Of course, some will give you a much better deal than others. No matter how you came by your collection, it is a valuable investment, and you need to be careful with it!
Get the best value for your (collectable) money
Once you’ve decided to sell or trade your rare collectible coins, your first priority is getting a good price for them. Of course, 300 year old British silver coins will sell for more than modern rare pound coins, but even recent collectible coins can be very valuable to the right buyer.
The key to getting good value for your collection is choosing the right place or agent to sell them.
Don’t go to a pawn broker!
No matter what, avoid pawn shops. They will give you cash up front, true, but you’ll be lucky to get even a fraction of your collection’s real value. Even worse ore the many ‘cash for gold and silver’ operations that have popped up in the last ten years or so. They will only pay out the ‘scrap’ value for your coins, then happily sell them on for tens or even hundreds of times what they paid you for them.
Selling your coins at auction
Another option is to sell your rare coins at a live, traditional auction. Of course, this may be dependent on your local auction house having an interest in selling coins or collections, and having the kind of customer base that would be likely to offer a decent price for them.
If you are lucky enough to have such an auction nearby, make sure of the costs before you commit. Some will charge you a percentage of the sale price whilst others will charge a minimum flat fee, which could reduce the return you can expect on small lots dramatically.
Online Auctions and Internet Marketplaces
Many collectors choose to sell online through eBay or any one of the similar online auction sites operating today. It is definitely a better choice than going through a pawn broker, but getting a good price for even rare 2 pound coins requires a great deal of skill, timing and even a bit of luck. It also takes a very long time to list each coin separately and go to the efforts that are required to get the right attention for each one. Listing your entire collection at once is right out, as most of the people bidding will only really want a few of the pieces, and may not understand (or at least appreciate) the value of the whole. Worse, the fees charged by these sites can be outrageous. Getting fair value is a challenge at the best of times.
Selling to a numismatic exchange (like us)
Of course, we’re going to advise you that you’ll get the best deal going through us. As the saying goes ‘highly recommended by owner’, right? But in this case it is literally true. Using a trusted, established coin dealer gives you certain undeniable benefits. We understand the market for collectable British coins very well, both on a historic level and in its current, occasionally volatile state. We’ve also spent decades building a reputation for fair, transparent dealing – something you won’t find at a pawn broker.
We are a business, though. We generally buy coins for slightly less than their expected sale price. But, because of the volume we do and our ability to predict a collectible coin’s sale value very accurately, we can afford to have smaller profit margins than many other types of establishments. In the end, we make more money if you know you can get fair value, and come back the next time you have something to sell or trade.
In fact, we buy a great many coin collections of all kinds from customers who had considered auctioning them, but were put off by the necessity of breaking them up into individualised lots, and the distinct possibility of getting a very low price from unexpectedly disinterested bidders. Selling through an exchange also avoids the hefty insurance and auction fees, as well as giving the seller their money right away.
How much can you expect to sell your rare coins for?
This is the real question, isn’t it? The exact answer depends on the coin, its condition, the market for such coins at the time and the state of the economy as a whole. We can only give you specific prices if you tell us what you have to sell.
Still, in general you can expect to get between 60% and 80% of your coin’s expected sale value when you sell to us. A 40% cut may sound like a lot, but that is an extreme example, and would represent a coin of uncertain value, or one whose sale price has a chance of dropping sharply before we would be likely to sell it on to another collector. It might also represent a coin which is of a type we do not specialise in. Most coins we buy would be a lot closer to the 25% end of the range.
What are we interested in buying?
Of course, we most want to buy what we can expect to sell for the best prices. We do have our specialities as well. Whilst this list changes frequently, most of our stock is of a similar numismatic type.
We regret that certain coins, such as old pennies, halfpennies, as well as any copper and cupro-nickel and copper coins dated 1946 or later are not in much demand. As such we cannot buy even excellent pieces.
Important – Read this before you sell or send in your coins – to anyone!
First off, never clean your rare or collectable coins! Cleaning them will immediately reduce their value substantially. Believe me, they are worth more in their current state!
4 easy ways to buy and sell!
1. Come in to the office.
Callers are always welcome by appointment. We are located in Benfleet, Essex and have ample, free parking.
2. We can arrange for a Home Visit.
3. We can conduct an online appraisal
Email us detailed, high-resolution pictures of your collection and we will do an online appraisal.
4. You can send your coins by post using Royal Mail Special Insured Delivery
In our experience, the Royal Mail option has always been both prompt and reliable.
Insurance can be purchased for up to £2,500 for each packet at a cost of approximately £7.25. If your collection is worth substantially more, we advise you to send it in 2 or more individually insured packets.
We will receive your packet by 1pm the next day & sign the receipt directly. We will also phone you immediately to confirm our receipt and your arranged payment.
Please include your telephone number in each packet, and the name to which we should make the cheque payable.
Contact, payment and postage instructions for customers wishing to sell their coin collections:
Contact: Matthew Barber
Telephone: 0800 978 8542
Address to send your parcel to:
Exclusive (leave the coins section out)
320 D High Road
Please also print out and add our Valuation Form here, this will include your desired payment method.