Once you have decided to be a philatelic enthusiast, there can be many benefits to collecting a host of different stamps. One of those is the value that some stamps collect.
While unearthing rare and valuable stamps is not a common occurrence these days, it can still happen. When one of these gems gets found, the collectors could stand to make a hefty sum of money.
However, if you are looking to sell your collection because you have run out of steam or interest in stamps, then there are a few ways that you can unload it for a profit.
Before you get into the actual sale, it’s imperative to take your time and have the collection evaluated.
It’s good to know who a reliable source of information is and who is doing you in. Just as important is determining the correct value of the collection.
Often stamps are overvalued, and this tends to cause frustration and disappointment when the sale happens.
The American Trade Society should be your first call to arrange a valuation. Some independent evaluators can assist you at a fee.
So, after reading this article, you’ll have all the guidance required and hence you could start stamp collecting as a hobby if you’re planning to do so as you’ll have all journey prepared with you.
How to Sell a Stamp Collection
Depending on your stamp collection, there are a few different avenues you can explore.
- Stamp Fairs
Stamp fairs take place at regular intervals bringing philatelic enthusiasts from novice level to experts to the table. Attending a fair is a reputable way to sell a collection. I caution you to ensure that the buyer is worth his salt in the knowledge department.
Whether you are an avid internet user or not, online stamps sales are alive and well, giving you an untapped audience that spans worldwide.
Bear in mind that online sales occur post the evaluation of the collection.
One downfall that makes the online sale tricky is that most philatelic collectors will not buy a collection that they cannot physically inspect.
Coupling your online display with an accurate assessment and description of the collection and individual stamps of value will increase your chances of securing the sale.
- American Stamp Dealers
Selling your collection to this society gives you a few advantages. First, you can be confident that your collection goes to a true enthusiast who will value and appreciate it and pay a fair price.
The ASD has many stamp enthusiasts who can guide you to dealers or buyers within your area that will look at your collection and potentially buy it.
Should the sale not happen, or something goes wrong, the ASD has an ethics code that may not be legally binding but will have repercussions on the member who does not follow them.
Well, these dealers will carry out a physical stamp collection valuation and based on that they’ll fix a price for you.
- Private Sale
Known as a “Private Treaty Sale,” you sell your collection to the auction house outright. You are fully aware of what you will get upfront and avoid the auction sale uncertainties.
Priced at fair market value, a private treaty sale will get you top dollar for your stamps and, there are no commission charges or sellers fees applicable.
- Auction sale
Auction sales work on a percentage of the profits made. This may seem like a downfall but the unrivalled exposure your collection will receive from a host of philatelic enthusiasts is most certainly a huge benefit.
Deciding to combine an auction with telephone and online bids, you benefit massively from the list of collectors and dealers associated with an auction house.
Selling at an auction is usually the best way to get the closest price to the retail value that you are looking for because the house works for you, not against you.
They will set the tone, set the benchmark, and work meticulously promoting your collection to get the best possible price.
Collectors often advertise themselves as dealers to get a bargain on a stamp collection, so be careful who you engage with here.
A reputable dealer will advise you on whether your collection is more valuable as a set or individually. Should your collection hold a significant value, they make even make you an offer.
Stamp of approval
Whether you have inherited a stamp collection or meticulously created one yourself, there is a financial benefit to be gained when selling it.
Be cautious in your selection criteria and do due diligence before making the final sale. Stamp collecting is a broad hobby with many enthusiasts around the world looking for that one unique collectible.
Be sure to have your collection evaluated by more than one source, and then find a buyer that meets your specific needs.
1. Do I need to have my stamps evaluated?
If you have inherited a stamp collection or found one for sale at an auction, it is best to have it evaluated to sell it on again.
2. Do stamps need to be intact even if they are old?
Tears or creases in a stamp will dramatically reduce the price of the item. It is best to keep them flat and secured if you want to sell them one day.
3. What is Philately?
Philately is the study of stamps.
4. Do you need a degree to study stamps?
No, you don’t need a degree. It would be good to have a guide on the rules and regulations surrounding stamp collecting.