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Caring For Your Collectible Coins

Coin collecting: Tips for caring for your coins

Collector coins 

If you collect coins, it is essential that you care for them properly to ensure they'll retain their value and actually become more valuable over time.

All Royal Canadian Mint numismatic coins (collector coins) are delivered encapsulated to help protect the coin from damage. It is best to leave the coins in their capsules to avoid nicks and wear which reduces the coin's grade and value.

When handling your numismatic coins, hold them by their edges over a cloth pad so an accidental drop won't mar them. Avoid touching the coin unnecessarily. Dirt and grease from your fingers will tarnish the coin eventually.

Exposure to the air oxidizes the metal, changing its color. While the aesthetics of your collectible coins may change, the price does not. The value of your coins stays the same regardless of their color. 

Cleaning collectible coins

Coins tend to lose their brightness over time, and you'll be tempted to polish them. But the best advice is don't do it! Chances are you'll do more damage than good.

The cleaning process often leaves tiny scratches that show up under a magnifying glass and lower the coin's value. Dirt can be safely removed by carefully washing the coin with a gentle hand soap and patting it dry.

Tarnish (called toning by coin collectors), doesn't lower a coin's value. Although dips can remove the tarnish, they will also remove any remaining mint luster resulting in a coin with an unnatural appearance and a reduced value.

Any cleaning will wear the surface of the coin, and while it may appear brighter for a while, the coin will eventually lose its value to a coin collector. Coin collectors expect the natural tarnish of a coin which actually serves as proof of its authenticity.

Article courtesy of the Royal Canadian Mint.

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