Protecting your collection is a separate subject in itself. Valuable coins should be insured and stored securely in a safe at home, or in a safety deposit box.
Storing and handling your coins
If you have your coin collection at home, take care in storing and handling the coins. Coins are sensitive to moisture. Dropping them will cause damage and affect their value. Even handling them carelessly will make a difference. Hold coins by the edge when inspecting them. Your skin contains a corrosive salt that will damage copper and bronze coins and potentially tarnish silver ones.
Should you clean your coins?
Generally speaking, coins should not be cleaned. Cleaning will result in abrasion to the coin’s surfaces. It could remove what may otherwise have been a valuable patina or lustre. Any form of treatment of this sort can more than half the value of the item. The risk is just not worth taking. An expert can easily detect treatment of this sort.
In numismatics, the study of coins, it helps to have an understanding of the historical context of the period and country you propose collecting. This can make your collecting more subtle and informed.
The following are brief thumbnail sketches of some of the collectable markets. Baldwin’s staff can help with more detail on the markets that interest you.
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With a history that dates back to 1872, A H Baldwin & Sons Ltd is one of the largest and longest established numismatic dealers and auction houses in the world. Our dedicated team of world-class specialists have over 200 years collective experience, covering all areas of numismatics.
Our experience has shown us that the very best collections in the world are achieved through a trusted relationship between collector and advisor. Whatever aspect of the numismatic world interests you, we have skilled numismatists who are always pleased to help.