If you clicked on this post to read, you may be thinking about starting this delicate hobby. Collecting coins can be pretty fun especially if you get to know in depth about valuable coins. For some, it can be quite profitable too, however there are much more things to learn about when starting this hobby. Whether you start big or small, perhaps you might want to get to know the basics such as how to organize your coins or what to collect.
Know What You Want to Collect
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Some collectors focus on collecting International coins, and some collectors enjoy collecting Malaysian coins too. Most Malaysian collectors enjoy collecting 1940’s Malayan coins, 1920’s Straits Settlement coins or even older than that because it is rare and valuable. There are also collectors who collect out of interest in coins and history. Whichever that you plan to venture in, it is good to know what sort of coins you plan to collect or which coin collector are you. Find out more about it, decide which is valuable and then dive in to it. Perhaps you can also visit websites like Malaysian Numismatic Society to get to know coin collecting better.
Where to Find Coins
The process of looking for places to buy or sell coins is pretty easy. You need to do your research and get to know the community better. Once you have decided what you are looking for or to collect, there are various online platforms such as Mudah you can find out more about buying or selling.
Know your Coin Collecting Tools and Supplies
Many don’t realize that coin collecting isn’t just about keeping your coins in a coin album. There are other essentials you might need to support you in your coin interest. Some supplies such as coin folder album, or a coin flip holder which is inexpensive because it is mostly made out of cardboard. You can purchase these folders and holders online. You would also need gloves to keep the acid and oils from your skin otherwise it will damage the surface of your coins. That’s right, your coins are delicate and you need to handle them with care. Another useful tool that you would need is a magnifier and a lamp with incandescent lighting. These tools will come in handy for you especially when you want to analyze your coins closely.
Join a Community
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Thanks to social media, exchanging coin knowledge with the international or local community is a lot easier now compared to those days. You won’t feel as if you are alone in this hobby. As a matter of fact, getting advice or opinions and even making friends with fellow collectors is just a click away. Try Facebook groups such as Malaysia Error & Variety Coin Collector. Who knows, you might meet another beginner collector and both of you can learn together. Other than just making friends or networking, you might even get updates on meet ups or Bank Negara’s release on commemorative coins that you can buy.
Avoid Coins with No Resale Value
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Whether you are beginner or not, every coin collector should know that they should avoid bad coins such as premium ‘mint’ coins, national collector coins and even souvenir coins from gift shops. These coins have zero value, therefore it is best to avoid instead of wasting your money in these coins. However, if you insist on collecting, you would have to look for a a person with similar interest in the coin or sell it at silver’s market rate.
Have a Start Up Fund Set Aside
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Any hobby or interest is an investment. It is always good to set aside some extra money to fund your hobby so that you don’t end up using your rainy day cash. Since coin collecting has a lot to do with buying, selling and trading, perhaps you can even make some extra money from it and roll that cash.
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Now that you are almost part of the coin collecting craze, it is important to learn some coin lingo too so that you know what the other collectors are talking about. It also helps when you are visiting dealers, especially when you are trying to buy or sell your coins.
Never Clean Your Coins!
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Believe it or not, this is actually one of the most important tip a collector should know. Never ever clean your coins. Don’t worry if it looks old and dingy. I know you might want it to look like shiny dubloons but trust me, if you do, it will reduce its value. Old coins, the older and seasoned they are, the higher the value. If you want your coins to look shiny, then make sure you clean the ones that you don’t plan to sell or perhaps to be passed down as a family heirloom.
Know Where to Sell Your Coins
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Once you have learned how to sell your coins, or at least get the gist of it, there are several coin dealers in Malaysia that you can look out for. This is also the best time to put that coin lingo to good use so that you don’t come off as an amateur. Haha! Another option is referring to a local coin community such as a Facebook page called Malaysia Coin.
Identify the Value of Your Coins
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Time to go through your grandparents’ stuff to see if there’s any valuable coins! There’s a fine line between valuing your coins and favouring a particular coin. Although most collectors tend to overvalue their coins, there are still some collectors who undervalue their coins especially the rare ones. Before you negotiate with dealers or collectors, make sure you develop an understanding on the value of your coins by referring to a value chart. It helps with identifying the value based on coin series, dates and even the condition and mint marks of your coins. You will at least have a rough estimation of the what you should be getting, and it will definitely help you be aware of dealers that are trying to exploit you. You can also study tips on how to deal with coin dealers or collectors and how to get the best price out of it.
Like any hobby, once you get into it, your entire world opens up to it. There are definitely plenty of online references that you can google, nonetheless, I am sure these basic tips will be able to get you started.