Where to Sell Gold Coins

Many people invest in gold because it offers security and long term stability. Others simply like the hobby of collecting. This article will give you the best ways to ensure you pick the right spot to sell your gold.  If you have popular specimens like the American Eagle cold coin, you are probably looking for the right way to sell them to convert their value into cash. Everything you need to know about where to sell gold coins has been brought together here, including a good idea for extracting value from smaller collections.

It is relatively easy to sell coins these days but there are some scam artists who will “cherry pick”, or take advantage of new sellers buy picking and choosing only the choice coins. Avoid dealing with pawn shops and gold liquidators who will not really care about the coin’s actual market value. There is nothing more satisfying than converting your coin stacks into real money. But there is nothing more frustrating than finding out your coins was worth more than you were paid for them.

Stay Local

It’s not a requirement, but it will help you sell quickly and with people who you can realy analyze up close. Doing a google search for something like “buy sell gold coins” or “sell gold coins denver”, (replace Denver with your city) is a great way to find local places to help you in this complicated, but potentially lucrative endeavor

Estimating the Value

The value of your coins is always going to vary by region and season, but what you want to do is come up with a ballpark estimate. By walking in with a good idea about what your coins are currently worth, you can avoid being scammed. It is best to consult a booklet or collecting guide to establish the value. Then you can take your information you have gathered and talk to a gold broker over the phone before bringing in your coins.

The values in a guidebook are monitored by professionals and will help you gain an initial frame of reference towards the value of your coins.  The PCGS, or Professional Coin Grading service publishes all kinds of  booklets and also offers up to date information online through there website at http://www.pcgs.com/prices/.

In order to use a guide, you need to determine the grade of each coin you own on the Sheldon Scale. It is a 70 point grading system that has detailed condition categories.  You only want to sell to someone who uses this standard and can abide by the Sheldon qualifications. Below is a brief summery of the graduations.

Sheldon Scale for Grading U.S. Coins

P-1 (Poor) – The words are not very readable and the coin is extremely worn.

F-2 (Fair) – The words are slightly readable, but the coin is damaged and extremely worn.

AG-3 (About Good) – The words are readable, but some spots are worn out. Some lettering should be visible, but may not be readable.

G-4 (Good) – Major embellishments and features are visible as outlines. But the coin overall is heavily worn.

G-6 (Good-plus) – Coin has a full rim. Major embellishments and features are visible as outlines. Heavily worn.

VG-8 (Very Good) – Full rim with clearly readable features. Still significantly worn.

F-12 (Fine) – Distinct rim, all legends defined, but the coin is moderately, and evenly worn.

VF-20 (Very Fine) – Clearly readable but lightly worn, good detail, clean rims, but it shows moderate wear on high points and a little wear below.

VF-30 (Good Very Fine) – Legends are clear, devices show all detail, very little wear; high points are a little worn.

EF-40 (Extremely Fine) – Legends are sharp, devices are clear, slight but obvious wear on the high points.

XF-45 (Choice Extremely Fine) – Legends and devices are clear and sharp, with slight wear, and great eye appeal.

AU-50 (About Uncirculated) – Sharp devices show only a trace of wear on the highest points. Mint luster remains.

AU-55 (Good About Uncirculated) – Sharp devices show a hint of wear on high points. Mint luster present at least 50%, great eye appeal.

AU-58 (Choice About Uncirculated) – Virtually uncirculated, minor wear marks. Nearly all mint luster, outstanding eye appeal.

MS-60 (Mint State Basal) – Coins in this grade dinged-up, bag-marked specimens, but are in mint condition and free of any wear!

All coins MS-60 and higher are Mint State coins.

Gift Valuation Alternative

If you do not have a large collection to sell, it can seem like quite a hassle. By using the opportunity cost of gift-giving, you may be able to extract more value from the coins then you could get by selling them to a shop or collector. Consider how much money you spend per year in gifts for friends, loved ones, and co-workers. By giving your coins as gifts, you can rely on the value, sentiment, and prestige of the coin to replace the gift buying you would normally do. This will save you money and time, and prevent the worries associated with finding the right gift. Everyone enjoys the luster of gold.

It’s obviously not going to work for everyone, but there are many people who give gold coins as gifts instead of buying the latest expensive trends. This shortcut allows you to use the value of your coins in a different way, but still lets you ‘gain’ by saving money that is normally already flowing out.

An Unbiased Appraisal

When you have decided to go ahead and sell your coins, it is time to get serious. After getting familiar with how your collection rates on the Sheldon scale, you may consider getting an appraisal from a professional rating service. Their detailed analysis will give you the confidence of knowing exactly where your coins fall on the scale. Then you will have some verified data to help sell your coins.

An appraisal involves bringing in your coins and waiting while they perform an inspection. You will then possess a very accurate description of each coin that you can take with you into any gold coin shop. Selling a popular coin can be very fast when you have verification of the rating.

To make matters slightly complicated, not all grading services are equal. There are three tiers of grading services that have varying degrees of precision. Obviously, if you can get a top tier rating, your coin value will be established in the most respectable way. The lower tiers offer ratings with looser guidelines that are not always looked upon favorably by experienced collectors. Knowing how to grade coins is just as important as knowing where to sell gold coins.

The Three Tiers:

  • Top Tier – PCGS and NGC
  • Second Tier – ANACS and ICG
  • Third Tier – All others, including ACG, INB, NTC, PCI, SEGS, SGS, etc.

Simply stick with the professional coin experts and you won’t go wrong. If your are going to sell American eagle coins or another popular variety, you will find plenty of demand. Stay positive, shop around for someone who uses the Sheldon scale and go turn your coins into cash!

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