> I'm not a coin collector, but we inherited coins from a relative. Many
> US proof sets and commemoratives, plus commemoratives from other
> countries too.
> Dealers' catalog prices look good, but how much would they pay? Would
> they pay more for a complete collection than for the same items offered
> Prices on eBay (completed auctions) vary widely, so selling without a
> reserve could be a big gamble.
> What's the best way to liquidate these assets?
The best way depends on how much time you're willing to spend doing
research on what you have. Mint issued products in their original
packaging/box usually bring a set dollar amount, depending, of course,
on what they are. The value for individual proof sets vary widely
based on the year issued and the coin composition (clad vs. silver).
The same with Mint sets and commemoratives.
Complete collections in Harris/Whitman folders don't normally bring a
whole lot unless they're in high grades and all of the keys are
included. And with that thought in mind, if they were in high grades
with all keys, they'd most likely be in a Dansco or Intercept Shield
If you want the highest value, I'd suggest doing completed auctions
searches on ebay and other auction sites (e.g., Yahoo) and take the
average value as to what you could expect if you were to list them.
Above all, don't look for MS-65 CC Morgans (which can bring as much as
four figures or more) and expect your beat-up, severely cleaned 1921 to
bring that same amount. Compare your coins to the dates, mint marks
and condition of those sold and use those values.
If you just want to get rid of everything as quickly as possible, take
them to your local coin dealers and see what they would offer. Realize
that if you go in blind, you'll probably get lowballed, so it pays to
do your homework.
If you choose to list them on ebay (or another site), avoid "Estate" or
"Inherited" anywhere. For most of us, it's a red flag. Also, even
though it's fine to say so here on RCC, I'd avoid making the statement
"I'm not a coin collector" in your auction. I mention this because a
lot of non-collectors with inherited coins see old coins that really
aren't worth a whole lot and then think dealers and potential buyers
are out to "screw them over" with low bids. Just be factual that you
have a nice 1982-S Proof Set, for example. Provide clear pictures of
the obverse and reverse of anything you auction. Mentioning the grade
is helpful, if you know how to grade. If not, the Red Book gives a
basic idea of what to look for in determining the grade.
If you like (and I like to offer this suggestion), do a "FS: Proof,
Mint, Commemorative, and Miscellaneous Coins" post, list what you have,
and provide a realistic price or a *best offer*. Some of us do buy
from other posters, and there's a lot less hassle and expenses than
dealing with online auctions.
Hope this helps.