Inheriting a rare coin collection can be somewhat overwhelming, especially if you don’t have much experience with collectibles. You might be looking for a qualified coin dealer, or perhaps you’re interested in diving into the market and adding to the collection. Whichever approach you choose, below are some common misconceptions you might have heard about coin collecting.

What Are Common Myths About Rare Coins?

1. Older Coins Are Worth More

While age may play a role in the value of a coin, its condition and rarity are usually much more important. A $1 George Washington coin from 2000 with missing lettering may be more valuable than a piece from the 19th century.

The coin’s condition is also a major factor that determines its overall value. A piece in mint condition may be worth thousands of dollars more than an identical sample with signs of normal wear.

2. Cleaner Coins Are Always Best

coin collection

If you’re planning on taking the inheritance to a coin dealer, cleaning off the patina may seem like a great way to increase its value. Unfortunately, this can easily damage a coin’s surface, increasing the chances of corrosion and bringing down the value.

Rare coin dealers and specialists know how to restore a coin without harming the finish. If you don't have the proper tools and training, it’s always best to leave coin cleaning to the professionals.

3. Coin Values Always Go Up

It’s a common misunderstanding that the value of any rare collectible always goes up. However, the coin market is subject to the law of supply and demand, which makes values rise and fall over time.

Some coins become more desirable among collectors, while other previously popular pieces might fall out of fashion. These peaks and valleys can be related to a number of variables, from prevailing tastes to stories that bring rare coins into the news.


If you've recently inherited a valuable coin collection, trust Ashmore Rare Coins and Metals to help you make the most of it. For over 30 years, these coin dealers have offered fair prices and expert advice to customers in the Triad area of North Carolina. Visit their website to learn more about their background and services, or call (336) 617-7537 with any questions about your coin collection.