One common comment coming from consumers is “I have some old ones, they’ll have value”. This can be in reference to coins, or currency or jewelry or collectibles. It is a very common misconception that age makes things more valuable.
If you own a house you know how this is not true. Often, with age, comes problems like wear and tear. But a house in an area in demand can appreciate at any age. The same is true for collector items of all kinds. The value is based on the availability (supply) and who wants it (demand). That is why you can have coins from the time of Christ that are only $10 and yet see coins that are modern sell for thousands of dollars.
The lesson here is that age does not equal value. Some times things just get old.
Posted in: All, Education
I had a customer ask about the guys who sell coins on TV. Technically, the question was “which one do you like better”. Come on, you can’t expect a guy to pick between his kids can you? 🙂
These coin vault type shows have a couple of flaws. The first is that they charge about double what you can buy things locally for. That assumes you are buying legit items. (We’ll save the fancy boxes for another day.) I don’t know too many business where you can charge a 50% commission and have people fawning over you. I know some real estate agents who think they are worth that much. You know who you are.
The second flaw is worse, it is the dishonest way in which they represent themselves. That is the coins that they sell are not sold in an honest fashion. Let’s face it, you can go to a major coin show and pay double what a coin is worth. Although if you are an avid collector that would probably never happen. But when you show prices from eBay to justify how you are pricing things on your TV show, that is nonsense. He always seems to find people pricing things for twice what he sells them for. I guess he couldn’t find any selling for less, hmm…. what are the odds?
The quick answer, just don’t buy from the TV. Even when they sell a good coin, you are paying way more than you can buy them for locally. And if you shop locally you can usually find knowledgeable dealers who are willing to show you the items up close and answer your questions.
The Franklin Mint has produced ”collector” items for several decades. The word collector is in quotations because the items that they sell are not really collector items. Yes, people do have them, and keep them, so in the very broad term they are ”collectible”.
The problem with items that are made to be collectible tend to have a negative return on investment. Most things that you can save or collect over time that end up having value are everyday items (like toys or clothes or furniture). They were not made to be a collectible, but people save them because the items are unique or scarce or remind them of their childhood (or a certain time period in history they have interest in).
The only upside to Franklin mint items is that a lot of what they produced (especially in the 1970’s) was made out of sterling silver. Herein lies the value of any of their stuff. Unfortunately, most of the items they sold were at such high premiums that there is little to no hope of actually getting a positive return on your money.
Today, many other companies market based on the Franklin Mint model. They either use the word ”mint” or other official sounding words to make people believe they are getting something of value. Or, they promote an item as ”collectible” or as something that will appreciate in value. Unfortunately most of these companies are the only ones who are getting a good return on their investment, while the consumer is left holding a fancy box!
What are Mexican Coins worth?
We get this question a lot. It really depends on when they are from. The hard part with Mexican coins is that there is a large area of coins from the 1960s to early 1990s that have no exchange value, no silver value, and no collector value.
Part of the reason they have no exchange value is because they have been demonetized. This means the the currency has been made useless by decree of the government.
The good news is that it makes it very inexpensive to put together different types of Mexican coins. Most of the coins have the Eagle and Snake symbol on one side, the other side will often have a portrait of Morales or Hidalgo, while some have really neat images of Aztec or Palenque culture.
Fourscore and seven years….it was the best of times it was the worst of times….in the beginning….
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The old adage is true. You may have seen a lot of ads on the local TV claiming you can get a ”free trip to Vegas” if you sell them your gold. I’ll point out this small company does not send you to Vegas out of the goodness of their hearts. They pay you less, and use some of the profit from the purchase to pay for your ”free” Vegas trip. Come on in to Old Pueblo Coin and you’ll have a lot more money to spend in Vegas if you buy the tickets yourself AND get a fair price for your gold and silver.