A Beginner's Guide to Coin Collecting
Coin collecting is a hobby that attracts all different kinds of people. If you're interested in
artistry, and the thrill of the hunt that comes with collecting, coins are a great item to focus on.
Coin collecting is affordable, educational, and exciting. Getting started is easy, especially when
consider that you probably have a handful of change on your nightstand or a jar of spare coins
the house. If you've ever been given a commemorative coin or saved money from a special anniversary,
then you've already started your collection.
Start Simple and Small
After looking through coins you already own, continue to think small and simple as you start your coin
collecting adventure. Decide what kind of
coins you're aiming to collect. Is there a certain country, mint, or time period you're
interested in? This can be a great place to start. Some coins become really expensive, since they
made from gold and silver, so make sure you're knowledgeable and confident about what kind of coins
want before you make any big purchases. Pennies
can be a great starting point for a collection. Old, valuable pennies are still in circulation and
be hiding in your wallet right now.
Find What You Like
Decide what coins to collect by letting what you like guide you. If you love a particular design, if
you're fascinated by the history behind a certain coin, or if you want to follow a theme like flowers, buildings,
or birds, these are
great starting points. If you like the look of these coins and want to stay within a low budget,
collecting Indian Head
pennies or the 50 state-themed
quarters is a perfect option for beginners. Avoid collecting coins with the goal of making
fast cash: This mindset can lead you to deal with untrustworthy coin dealers.
Storage and Handling
Coins have delicate surfaces that can get easily scratched, worn, and damaged. The closer a coin is
mint condition (looking fresh, shiny, and new, like it was just minted), the more valuable that coin
New collectors should make sure that they have some coin folders and collector albums for proper
storage and handle their coins properly. Wear
cotton or latex gloves when handling coins, and always hold coins by the edges like the
professionals do. You may think it's a good idea to clean a coin, but this actually makes dealers
consider a coin to be damaged. Cleaning
worn coin will decrease its value, so handle it with care and show off the coin as is.
Building a Collection Over Time
Take your time building your collection. Making impulsive decisions can lead to disappointment and
purchases you regret later. Rushing can lead to mistakes and leave you vulnerable to scammers. Growing a
collection over time is ultimately more meaningful and more personal and might develop into a
hobby that lasts a lifetime.
Buy the Book or Magazine and Do Research
A common piece of advice among coin collectors is to "buy the book before you buy the coin." There
many reliable guides on coins and their values in books and magazines. The "red book," A Guide
of United States Coins, is a popular choice that can help collectors make informed choices
buying super-valuable coins in great condition. Explore all of the information in this book. It has
more to offer than the price guides alone! Magazines and websites like
can also be good sources of education for coin collectors.
Visiting a Coin Show or Shop
Coin collectors can definitely find a lot of excellent coins for sale online, but this takes away the
chance to hold a coin and inspect it yourself. Visiting a coin show or a coin shop can connect you with other
collectors. Build friendships while making some great finds at a coin show, and find a trusted
local coin shops. It's so much safer to make a big purchase from a coin dealer you're familiar with
trust. Coin collecting clubs are also great places to connect with some fantastic resources. Coin
collecting is fun, but working with others who share your passion makes the experience even more
Tips and Further Resources