Age Doesn’t Matter: Dates Are Not As Important as You Think in Rare Coin Values

You’ve got a coin that is at least 100 years old. You’ve been saving it for a while, hoping it will be something you can cash in on a rainy day. But to your surprise, a dealer has told you it’s worth less than the price of a tank of gas.

Surprised? You’re not alone. Many collectors are shocked when they discover that mintage is not always a relevant factor when buying rare coins. The value of your coins is much more dependent on these three factors:

  • Quality. The value of your coins will firstly depend on the condition they are in. Coins that have been preserved and present clearly legible markings will ultimately be worth more that those that are well-worn. Good condition is so important that the demand is geared toward high-quality, meaning your high-quality coins will increase in value faster than off-quality (worn) coins. For this reason, it is best to have your collection appraised by a certified coin grader in order to be sure of its potential value.
  • Rarity. The fewer the specimens of your coin that exist in the world, the higher its estimated value will be. The best example of this is coins that are no longer being minted, such as the Lincoln “wheat penny” (cents minted between 1909 and 1958). Since they are no longer in production, the number of these coins in existence will decrease each year, and will continue to grow in value.
  • Demand. The bottom line is, your collection is worth as much as someone is willing to pay. Even common coins can command a high price if they are in high demand. For example, 1916D dimes often sell for much more than dimes made a hundred years earlier even though they are far more common. The reason is that the 1916D dime is a Mercury dime, and more people collect them.

If you are thinking about making a serious investment in semi-rare or rare coins, our precious metal dealers can advise you on which options are right for you. Call us at (877) 795-9585 or fill out the quick contact form on this page to get started on your investment today.