A new year is here, and it’s a great time to try new things. Coin collecting is a unique hobby for several reasons. Unlike most other hobbies, coins don’t just cost money; they often end up earning you money. But just like any new hobby, when you’re first starting out there’s a lot to learn. And that’s sometimes overwhelming. So here are four simple steps to help you get your coin collection off the ground.
Learn the Basics of Numismatics
Before buying anything, it’s best to do some research about coin collecting. Coins can seem daunting when you’re first starting out, but with some basic knowledge, you can navigate the wonderful world of numismatics a little more easily. Some basics to familiarize yourself with are the anatomy of a coin, how coins are graded, and the basics of coin production. Just knowing the meaning of obverse (the front of a coin) and reverse (the back of a coin) can mean the difference between looking like a pro and looking like an amateur to a dealer or fellow coin collector. A great beginners book to get you started is Warman’s U.S. Coin Collecting by Alan Herbert.
Pick Your Dealers Carefully
Another important step is to find a trusted dealer. Once you’ve gotten your feet wet researching the coin world, you should find a dealer or two you trust to buy some coins. But you shouldn’t pick just any dealer. Shop around for prices so you can get an idea of what coins should cost. Buying online will often save you some money, but you also run the risk of not being completely satisfied with your buy. Look for dealers who are certified by the Professional Coin Grading Service, the American Numismatic Association Certification Service, or the Numismatic Guaranty Corporation.
Select Proper Storage
Once you’ve studied numismatics, and found a few trusted dealers, it’s time to pick some storage. The method you choose to store your coins can be the difference between protecting your investment and ruining it. Store them in the wrong material, and they can get discolored, and even degraded. Luckily for you, coin collectors have been perfecting storage for decades, so there are tons of options. The term you should look for when selecting coin storage is “archival-quality” coin storage. If the coin storage product you’re purchasing says it’s archival quality, you can rest assured your coins will be protected and maintain their value.
Set Goals and Pick a Theme
As with any hobby, the most important part of coin collecting is to have fun. When starting out your coin collection, think about what you like and what excites you, and plan your collection accordingly. Some fun ideas are birth-year sets, animal collections, or regional collections. If you love Ireland, start an Irish coin collection. If animals are your thing, you’re in luck! There are tons of animal coins just waiting to become part of your collection. Whatever your interests are, you can find some coins that will pique them. Picking coin themes that you have a personal interest in, and setting goals accordingly, will help sustain your new hobby for years to come.
Liberty Coin & Currency specializes in rare coins and currency. We are a family-owned business located in Portland and Vancouver. We also buy gold, silver, diamonds, and jewelry. Visit us first for a free evaluation.