New to buying/selling any advice?

Discussion in 'Coin Chat' started by AirborneReams, Sep 17, 2020.

  1. AirborneReams

    AirborneReams Member

    Hello all! I’m a few days new here and still learning some of the ins and outs. I have collected for a while and thought I’d turn something I loved into work, seemed like the best time to do it losing my job and all to everything that happened earlier this year. I do find myself not in a bad spot but kind of just treading with what I put out and gaining some or losing some from online auctions. I only bid at places that I know have returns/refunds do to fake coins or just completely abused coins that was not shown in the pictures with reflection or some sort (way more common then I expected..) I’ve tried local estate sales but there aren’t many going on and they don’t have much of a yield for coins or currency. I try to bid on coins that are low for their worth but I still usually only get 5$-20$ And 50$ on top If I’m really lucky (very rare). I thought buying the bigger more expensive coins usually yield more for a return but I’ve been finding myself losing money that way or getting it right back because those are the coins that usually go over their worth especially if the sellers really doctor up their photos which mostly everyone does on these sites and people eat it up. Does anyone have some helpful tips or any ideas and insight that can help keep this thing I love going for me and possibly grow into something more? I’ll take any feedback good or bad anything is helpful for me being somewhat new. Thank you in advance!
     
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  3. fretboard

    fretboard Defender of Old Coinage!

    Welcome to CoinTalk, join a coin club! :D Selling coins for a profit takes time and it's not easy at all, as your post has stated. I suggest you learn all you can here by reading and participating in the discussions and after a year or more, then think about your position at that point. The only place I can think of to buy coins for good prices is a yard or garage sale. They won't have any out, you have to tell them you're looking and see what they say. I think you'd be surprised how many people have old silver coins laying around! good luck!
     
  4. mynamespat

    mynamespat Dingus

    Coin dealing is super low margins. Most dealers make a living from volume of sales. Selling a lot of coins requires a large inventory. A large inventory requires a large initial investment.

    If you want to sell coins, do it because it's something you enjoy and have time to kill. Don't expect to start making a living from it anytime soon unless you have deep pockets, or an advanced knowledge which gives you an edge over the market.

    If you are profiting ~$5-20 on sales (you didn't mention coin values, but let us assume on $50-$200 coins for a ~10% profit margin), you are doing pretty darn well just starting out.

    My advice: Do the coin sales because its fun. Then use the knowledge of online selling you acquire to sell a product which is less niche and more commoditized. There is way more money to be made in Sham-wows and Foreman Grills (socks and lip balm; tape dispensers and soap holders ...etc) than there is in coins.
     
  5. AirborneReams

    AirborneReams Member

    thats a good idea to join some groups I didn’t think of that one! I guess it’s more of a time with experience thing. I’ll have to take a look around at some local yard sales I’ve seen a few in my area lately, thank you!
     
  6. AirborneReams

    AirborneReams Member

    i was kind of waiting to hear that from someone that there’s not much money in the business so I’m glad I heard it this early on, kind of wanted it not to be true. But it is something I love and can handle on the side. There’s just a few sellers I see that have daily auctions where their coins go for 100$-1000$ Each and I check their inventory and all the coins are extremely rare, just wonder how they get so many of them and for prices where they can make money off of. But I’m sure it’s just like anything, some people just find that way and it works for them. I’ll keep doing it as a passion and if it turns into something bigger then great. Thank you for your advice!
     
    Two Dogs likes this.
  7. Heavymetal

    Heavymetal Well-Known Member

    We got your back, Jack!
    Free advice 24/7 from around the world
    A coin club is a great start. Don’t want the have to learn everything from costly experience
    So much good info online once you know how to evaluate it
    And books are your friends
     
    Bayern, AirborneReams and spirityoda like this.
  8. Silvergmen

    Silvergmen SILVER & MORGAN Obsessed

    Welcome to CT!

    If I was going to try to start making a living out of it here are a few of the things I would do:

    - find a few Local coin shops that don’t do internet business (many still don’t). Build a relationship with them and see if you can buy wholesale and sell on eBay/auction sites.

    - advertise in your area letting people know you buy coins. You can advertise for free or cheap in many places. Put up signs etc.

    - keep doing what your doing making 5-20 a coin adds up and let’s you buy more inventory

    - find coin niches. For instance if you know a ton about Certain ancients you can walk into many coin shops and they may underprice ancients because they focus on Bullion, etc.

    - you need to start building up a collector clientele. You can do that with your own site and some advertising. Buying wholesale from coin shows and auctions and selling directly to collectors is your best chance at bigger margins. You can help people find and buy specific coins or coins from your inventory. Many people want help and need someone they can trust.

    - find good sources for raw coins and learn how to grade a few types of coins really well so that you can buy under graded coins and send them in to be slabbed. This takes time and knowledge but it works and can give you some great returns.


    Good luck!!
     
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  9. Silvergmen

    Silvergmen SILVER & MORGAN Obsessed

    Keep a day job until you build the business up enough to cover your basic expenses. If you still love it and its going in the right direction you can quit your day job. That is always the safest way to start this type of business.
     
    AirborneReams and fretboard like this.
  10. AirborneReams

    AirborneReams Member

    This is true! Any books you might recommend besides the red book already got that lol!
     
  11. AirborneReams

    AirborneReams Member

    Wow that was very insightful! I never thought to even ask the local guy I go see a few times a week, already Pretty known in the store so maybe I can give that a try. I really appreciate that I’ll be putting some of these things into play!
     
    Silvergmen likes this.
  12. AirborneReams

    AirborneReams Member

    That’s the smartest thing I can do, I did lose my job to all this stuff going on but hoping it will come back soon, thank you!
     
    Silvergmen likes this.
  13. ZoidMeister

    ZoidMeister Hamlet Squire of Tomfoolery . . . . . Supporter

    I'm late to the conversation, but do have some advice.

    The BEST way to get started in this to provide some kind of related service to folks who are collectors or who want to disburse a collection.

    What I'm talking about is; be creative and come up with some kind of display stand or frame that integrates photos or other display items along with the collectors coins. It could be a departed loved one, a birth year set, a local club or historical site, a business or event. Or offer to sell collections for folks on a consignment basis. Honesty and good documentation here is the key. There are probably a dozen more examples that I'm not thinking of off hand

    Either of these two types of activities bring you along side the coin owners, you will be viewed as a resource, not as the advisory. It's the psychology of the sale and salesman. Become the assistant, not the 'predator.' Once alongside, you can ask and have discussions about items of less interest to them but of more interest to you. Maybe you can start by picking up bags of obsolete Indian nickels to help younger collectors fill holes in their nickel books. Search modern change to do the same with quarters. Or blend two hobbies together . . .

    I started making State Quarter and 1911 dated coin wooden and bone gun grips for folks a while back. That blends coin collecting with gun collecting. Examples below. You just have to be creative in the approach.

    Whatever you can do to bring yourself alongside as a resource will give you better access to the resources.

    Hope this helps.

    Z

    State Quarters Grips - 006.JPG

    QuarterEagleGrips - 003.JPG

    Grips-Asst - 01.JPG
     
  14. ZoidMeister

    ZoidMeister Hamlet Squire of Tomfoolery . . . . . Supporter

    Are you a computer geek? Research coin documentation software and help collectors enter and document their collections.

    Z
     
  15. Mainebill

    Mainebill Wild Bill

    Study. Learn. Learn to grade and original surfaces. Money to be made by buying raw and getting graded but you have to know what coins will do well. Study eye appeal and premium coins. Top quality will always bring more and sell better. Look for tougher dates and keys. Anyone looking to complete say a walking liberty half set will need the 21 dates while they already have the common stuff and did I mention study and learn. The big auctions can be educational as you’ll see coins you don’t otherwise see
     
  16. Mr.Q

    Mr.Q Well-Known Member

    Everything CTer's are advising you is 100% correct. Step 1. Read Step 2. learn Step 3. return to step 1... Knowledge is a continuous learning process. Step 4. Share your knowledge. Welcome to CT and good luck
     
    Bayern likes this.
  17. Bayern

    Bayern Active Member

    Most dealers will have "junk" bowls of world coins that they buy cheap, usually from walk-in customers. Since many dealers that are in the U.S. focus on U.S. coinage, and basically ignore world coins, you can often find good coins in these bowls. Usually they sell them for 10-25 cents each, or by the pound. If you learn what coins are good, the way to go is picking coins out, rather than by the pound. This way you don't get all the actual low value common stuff. Also, depending on the dealer, some drop everything in, whereas others will have separate bowls with Canadian, Mexican, and sometimes one with just Euro coinage. Older Mexican and Canadian coinage can be good, but the modern general circulation stuff is not. You can often find pre-1900 coins in these bowls, sometimes in high grades. Some examples of the latter dates that I have found: 1890's 20 reis from Brasil; Victorian and Edwardian British colonial issues from Ceylon, India, etc, along with the homeland issues and those of outlying islands, such as Guernsey and Jersey; coins from Italy, Belgium, Spain, Romania, Russia, San Marino, Greece, etc.- again, all pre-1900 in grades from very fine to uncirculated. The coins in question that I picked out can all be sold for considerably more than they were purchased for. On average 10-15 dollars each is what I have gotten, with many selling at a good bit more. Occasionally, 16 - 1700's dated coins will be found in these bowls as well. (French tournois, British farthings, half pennies, etc.). An occasional early American copper in ag to g, I have also found.
    As for U.S. coins, there are some dealers that are not as good as others at grading, and you can often purchase under graded coins at a good price. And if you purchase multiple coins each time, you can often get some sort of discount. Dealers will often negotiate if there is room in the price, vs. what they paid, as well.
    Also learn what is not so great, and stay away from that- such as the statehood through America the Beautiful quarters series. The West Point mint quarters starting in 2019 of course do have a premium over face,, along with silver issues, and also a few error coins-but otherwise nothing to see here.
    You may already be aware of a lot of this info, but if not, I hope this helps. Please ask more questions and we will try to help here.
    Just continue learning as much as you can, and you'll start to get a feel for what is a good value over time.
     
    Last edited: Sep 19, 2020
    RonSanderson likes this.
  18. John Skelton

    John Skelton Morgan man!

    There's book is key, but ignore the prices stated. I just came from an auction where the auctioneer kept hyping the prices in the red book to get high bids for a coin.

    The people who put out the red book also have a series covering various U.S. coins. I have one on Morgan's and another on Franklin halves, for example.
     
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