10 Tips for the New Collector of Australian Coins

So you’re interested in collecting Australian coins and want to know how to get started? Here’s our top 10 tips for the new collector of Australian coins.

  1. It’s often said about collecting coins, and I’ll repeat it now. Buy the book before you buy the coin. Get yourself one of the two well known Australian coin catalogues, either McDonalds or the Renniks catalogue.
  2. Take a deep breath and calm down. There’s no rush to get in there and start buying right now. Take the time to see what’s available, what interests you, the different ways you can purchase and the different places you can purchase.
  3. Try to visit a coin shop. Look at coins up close, hold them, look at RAM products and how they are packaged. Coin collecting is very tactile and visual, and while the Internet has given coin collectors the opportunities to purchase more easily than ever before it can be a remote and unemotional process. Entering a coin shop for the first time can be a huge thrill!
  4. Don’t get excited or caught up the dreaded auction frenzy when buying coins from sites such as eBay. Recently people were paying more than $100 for coins that cost $3 from the RAM in Canberra. These same coins will be minted ALL YEAR and be available ALL YEAR for $3 from the mint. I pity people who paid that much money for a coin that will be worth $4-5 by the end of the year.
  5. Try to wait a year before buying current issue RAM products. It’s not unusual to see mint sets and proof sets to be selling on eBay and similar sites for well under issue price the year after they are issued.

  6. Make sure you store your collection the right way from day one. If you collect RAM product then make sure it’s kept protected in storage boxes away from prying little hands. It seems silly but a proof set with a daggy damaged box but perfect coins will always sell for less than one with a pristine box. If you’re collecting individual coins make sure you choose a PVC free storage solution for them, it’s no more expensive and you’ll stop your coins from being ruined in the long run.
  7. If you’ve decided to collect pre-decimal coins then you need to learn to grade. Now. No, not later, now! If you don’t take the time to learn to grade then you’re going to be at the mercy of the seller of the coin and the grade he or she assigns to a coin. When just one or two grades difference can mean tens, hundreds, or even thousands of dollars in difference in value you can see it’s well worth your time! The ANDA Grading Guide for Commonwealth Coinage is a good place to start, as is a dealers stock book. If you don’t want to learn to grade you could just collect slabbed Australian coins but even then you SHOULD learn to grade so you know what you’re buying.
  8. Don’t think you’re ‘investing’ in a coin unless you are highly knowledgeable about the market, the coin series and can grade the coin accurately. If you’re not all of these things you’re just speculating and just as likely to do your dough as make money. Even if you are all of these things sometimes you’re just speculating in a more educated fashion!
  9. Get involved with the coin collecting community, you’ll pick up handy tips, make friends and keep abreast of the current market conditions. Coin clubs, online coin forums and coin shows are ideal ways of getting involved. Coin collecting is by it’s nature a solitary hobby and if you make the time to talk to others it is entirely more enjoyable.
  10. Remember it’s supposed to be fun. If the hobby stops being fun the step back and re-evaluate what you’re doing. If you’re worried about financial returns then it’s not a hobby and you should examine your motivations. If a collecting theme is boring you then look for another. If you’re out of money look for a coin collecting book to read instead!

Posted in Collecting Coins

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Australian Numismatic Calendar

Current Coin Values, Bullion Prices and Exchange Rates

AUD $12.46
Australian 1966 Round 50c
AUD $763.92
Gold Sovereign
AUD $956.32
Australian $200 Gold Coin
AUD $36.49
Silver Price (per Oz)
AUD $3,244.90
Gold Price (per Oz)
USD $0.6515
Australian Dollar

These values are updated hourly using New York market prices. Coin values are purely the value of the gold or silver they contain and do not account for any numismatic value.
Prices Last Updated: 18:04 05 Mar 2024

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