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Top Tips to Sell Your Coins

Top Tips to Sell Your Coins

Posted on March 24, 2022
Writer: James Miller

With the world economy being severely hurt by COVID-19, gold prices shot to record highs in 2021, unprecedented since September 2011.

As a result, silver became known as “the new gold.” So, it’s no wonder why the interest in selling coins is growing. But what is the best way to sell coins? This article will help you choose the best ways and places to sell precious metal coins. 

Best Way to Sell Coins

To successfully sell coins, you need to be well-equipped with proper information and knowledge about the market. 

According to Global News Wire, the value of the global gold jewelry, gold bar, and silver market was $217 million in 2020. It’s projected to value at $353 million by the end of 2027. 

If you’re looking to sell your coins, take the following steps:

Research the Coin Trade

Buying and selling coins may seem daunting. Likewise, you may find the coin trade a tricky business if you’re not well-versed. That’s why you need to take your time to educate yourself and gain a basic understanding of the coin trade.

Some of your best resources include the Red Book, a guidebook of U.S. coins that lists approximate retail prices, as well as the Blue Book and the Black Book. However, the amount you’ll be offered for your items could be 20% to 50% less than the prices that you can find in the mentioned guides.

Pick the Right Time 

Pick the right time for your coin trade. For instance, gold performs well, as a rule. However, it’s sometimes unclear when to buy and sell gold. When determining the best way to sell coins, it is best to hold out for prices to rise. For example, it’s recommended to sell gold during the best-performing months of September, November, and January.

Determine the Coin Price and Value

Avoid undervaluing or overvaluing your items. For example, a 2,000-year-old bronze coin can be sold for a few dollars. Unfortunately, older items don’t always mean they will be more valuable. Also, it’s essential to know the difference between retail price and wholesale price. Don’t use these two terms interchangeably. 

The retail price is the amount paid for the coin you’re purchasing from a dealer. The wholesale price, also known as the value, is the amount a coin dealer offers for buying a coin from you.

Important Vocabulary

Before selling coins, it’s important to familiarize yourself with how the wholesale price is determined. The following factors influence the price:


The supply of a particular coin in a particular grade that people can buy is one of the main factors. The initial mintage of that coin determines the total possible supply available to the market. The Coinage Act of 1792, also called the Mint Act, established the U.S. Mint overseeing the production of coins minted using gold, silver, or copper.

Grade or Condition

This measures the appearance of a coin. The finest condition possible is called “uncirculated.” The term means the coin hasn’t ever circulated in the regular money supply in the economy. When it comes to grading, coins are assigned a numeric value on the Sheldon Scale. The grades range from Poor (P-1) to Perfect Mint State (MS-70).

Survival Rate or Surviving Population

The coins that people and collectors have saved are referred to as the “surviving population,” which has a lower role than the mintage.


The demand for a particular type or date of the coin can increase or decrease, thus raising or cutting the available supply of a specific coin. For example, coin dealers’ marketing campaigns can increase the demand for certain types of coins.

Additionally, the number of coins in a dealer stock can significantly affect the price and value of offered items. For example, the abundance of a specific type in a dealer’s inventory will decrease the price so the dealer can sell more of them to reduce the stock. The opposite is also true. Therefore, it is best to research different dealers before trading the pieces you have.

Melt Value

Melt value shows how much the coin would be worth if you melted it down and sold the metal. Understandably, coins with a high melt value tend to be worth more. If a coin is made from gold or silver, the intrinsic value of this precious metal can be vital in determining the value and price of the coin.

We are not recommending that you melt down your gold coins into gold bars, though. The coins will likely be worth more as coins.

A gold bar (also called gold bullion or gold ingot) is a high-purity physical gold that comes in the shape of a bar. How much does a gold bar weigh? Gold bars come in different sizes, between one to 100 troy ounce(s). However, the most commonly traded size is one troy ounce. One troy ounce equals around 31 grams.

Coin Grading Services

When discussing the price and value to determine the best way to sell coins, make sure to know about PCGS, NGC, and CAC.

  • PCGS (Professional Coin Grading Service) is the top internet site for coin collectors. It sells for premiums over NGC (Numismatic Guaranty Company) coins.
  • NGC is the largest third-party coin grading service in the world.
  • CAC (Certified Acceptance Corporation) is a New Jersey third-party coin certification company. CAC coins sell for more than non-CAC ones. Also, CAC coins sell to retail buyers or end-users more often than non-CAC ones.

Interestingly, the number of people, even crypto fans, buying rare coins has surged unprecedentedly. The pricing of rare and very rare items can be rather challenging. Therefore, you need to examine recent auction records.

Rare coins are the ones that weren’t minted in mass production or are now available in very limited quantities. Rare coins in good condition are worth a large amount of money. To determine the value of rare coins, you need to consider the following criteria: rarity or scarcity, condition or grade, demand, quality, and bullion value.

Get a Fix on the Price

When selling gold or silver coins, you may be offered a price around the spot metal value of your coin. The spot price is the amount that equals the bullion metal value or the melt value. 

Know the Tax Implications of Precious Metals 

You will need to pay taxes on any coins you sell at a profit. This is because the U.S. Internal Revenue Service (IRS) classifies gold and other precious metals as “collectibles.” The long-term capital gains rate on these metals is 28%. Short-term gains are taxed at ordinary income rates, 10% to 37%, depending on income level.

Best Places to Sell Coins

Finding the best place to sell coins has become easier since you can use physical stores and online trading options.

Physical Auction

An auction can last between three and six months. A public auction sale enables the seller to get the retail value for coins. Here, you’ll be charged either a flat fee or a percentage of the wholesale value.

Coin Shows

Coin shows grant you an opportunity to meet dozens of coin dealers. Here, you can sell different coins, including cheap pieces and very rare or valuable items. 

The most popular shows are the FUN show in January and the ANA in July or August. FUN or Florida United Numismatists, Inc. is an organization that aims to involve and grow the numismatic community both in Florida and worldwide. ANA or the American Numismatic Association is a nonprofit organization focused on studying the numismatics and hobby of coin collecting.

These are places where you can meet collectors and dealers from around the world. Additionally, major mints from around the world attend these shows to showcase their upcoming products. Often, they unveil new coins for the first time at these shows.

Another advantage is that you can easily and quickly show your coins to many dealers and see who offers the best price. Face-to-face talks allow you to come up with the best deal for your needs. Moreover, seeing lots of different coins at once enables you to learn how to grade coins. Finally, you can save time and resources by traveling to one location rather than visiting different shops or dealers.

However, if you lack enough financial resources to travel to the host cities, these shows might not be the best option.

Coin Dealer or Shop 

Now, let’s see how to sell coins to a dealer. If you’re trying to sell quickly, a coin shop can be the go-to option for you. However, expect dealers to offer a price less than your pieces are worth. 

Online Auction or Marketplace

If you want to avoid the travel costs associated with the options above, you may try to sell your coins on an online marketplace. Figuring out how to sell coins online is easier when using a trusted website. Here are some of our picks:

  • American Precious Metals Exchange (APMEX) – Consider APMEX when figuring out how to sell coins online. APMEX is one of the biggest bullion dealers in the U.S., selling gold, silver, copper, platinum, and palladium products. The minimum value of the products is $1,000.
  • Money Metals Exchange – The offered pricing for precious metal products is competitive. You can also use its buyback program to enjoy the highest price among competitors.
  • SD Bullion – SD Bullion boasts a variety of precious metals, including copper, silver, gold, palladium, and platinum, and sells unique metal safes. The company will match the precious metal price if you find a price lower than the one offered by SD Bullion. 
  • JM Bullion – On JM Bullion, you can offer gold and silver products, from bars to rounds to coins. The deals are exclusively in physical bullion. You can enjoy competitive pricing.
  • Modern Coin Mart – Their business model is like a pawnshop. You can send in your coins and get paid within a few business days. MCM offers top market prices.
  • eBay – eBay boasts a vast audience. Here, you can sell anything. Seller fees make up 12.35% plus $0.30 when your coin gets sold. eBay is one of the most competitive places for the coin trade. 
  • Heritage Auction – Heritage Auction has fewer users compared to eBay. It offers coins outright or by consignment auction. The payment will get to you within 45 days.
  • – Here, you can buy and sell rare silver, gold, and bullion items. There is a 5% fee for selling an item, regardless of how much that item sells for. However, the user base isn’t large. 
  • Forums and Social Media – Forums and social media are great for finding buyers near you. This way, you can save on shipping costs. Also, you may be able to deal in cash. However, this option is ideal for those already active in online communities.

Now you know the main places associated with the coin trade where you can sell coins and find the best gold coins to buy

How to Sell Old Coins

Are you selling old coins? Auctions, pawnshops, and private buyers are ideal for selling old coins. However, we recommend having a coin appraiser determine how much your antique items are worth. The appraisal is about evaluating the rarity, age, and condition.

How to Sell an Entire Coin Collection

What about selling your coin collection all at once? You may find this intimidating, but with the right steps, you can save a lot of time. First, gather your collection.

Next, take the time to understand the profit margins of different coin dealers: not all dealers have the same returns on time and money. Make sure to work with a dealer who is ready to work on the lowest profit margin. This way, you can get more money in your pocket.

In addition, create a coin collection inventory featuring the details of what you have in your collection, such as the types of coins and their value. Moreover, study the market and screen the available options to avoid unrealistic expectations concerning the collection price and quickly find the best deal for your coins.

Final Thoughts

Gold and silver can be the wisest solution in many situations, especially when faced with an economic collapse. When considering the best way to sell coins, you need to understand the market and the value and price of your items. Also, make sure to sell to the right buyer to get the best price for your coins.

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