Points to Consider Before Taking Old Coins to a Gold and Silver Buyer

Many men and women find a collection of old coins after inheriting an estate. Their parents may have accumulated some gold coins over the years. They might have kept silver coins after the government ended the inclusion of this precious metal. A collection can be sold to a buyer of gold, silver and other coins.

Understanding Market Value

Even relatively common items will bring in more than the face value. The buyer typically pays close to the market value for the precious metal weight if there is nothing particularly unusual included. 

Precious metal prices can be relatively stable for many years, but sometimes the market is quite volatile. Silver prices are significantly more volatile than prices for gold because the silver market is much smaller. Ordinary used silver quarters have a market value of $4.26 in July 2021, but the value may increase or decline remarkably within a few months.

A quarter weighs about 5.7 grams. With the market value of gold at about $58 per gram in July 2021, a gold coin of the same weight would be worth more than $300. Buyers pay somewhat less than the full value because they need to make a profit.

Unusual Items

If the person who has inherited these coins realizes there are antique and unusual items in the bunch, doing some online research is advisable. Not everyone has the patience for this, but taking time for the activity might verify that some are rarer and quite valuable.

Being Realistic

Most old coins aren't worth a large amount of money, so the person must be realistic about what to expect. Nevertheless, a small number of nickels and pennies amid a larger set of silver coins could suggest the owner understood the value. 

Condition Categories

Collectible coins are classified by condition, ranging from good to uncirculated. An uncirculated coin is worth substantially more than a similar one that has seen plenty of use. However, older metal currency that was never used is very rare.

Important Considerations

Using a soft cloth to gently brush away loose dirt or dust is acceptable, but it's important not to do any further cleaning. Applying detergent or any other cleanser can actually reduce the value. Gold and silver coin buyers inevitably feel disappointed when they realize a prospective customer has tried to make these old items look shiny and new. Overzealous sellers might even use scouring pads, which scratches and ruins the surface.