When you buy rare gold coins or any rare coins for that matter, the last thing you want to do is be scammed, and lose money by making a mistake, rewarding a dishonest swindler in the process.
With rare coins, one of the most common scams is selling a coin for more than its actual worth, or claiming that a coin is something that it is not. For example, many people electroplate coins with gold or silver to give them an authentic appearance, when in fact the entire core is composed of a cheap metal such as nickel.
But scams and cons come in all forms, and the best way to learn is from the mistakes of others, preparing yourself for any situation, and deterring thieves with your expansive knowledge of their duplicitous ways.
Some scam artists take the form of a helpful, friendly dealer who gains the trust of customers, later victimizing these same customers and stealing from them or swindling them.
One woman became extremely friendly with her dealer, who convinced her to liquidate her life savings to invest in rare coins. While rare coins hold their value over time and are a safe investment, having the actual coins on hand at home is not secure, and one day when this woman was out of the house, her “trustworthy” dealer walked through the front door, pilfering these coins and this woman’s life savings. Save yourself time and money by trusting your dealer, but only to the extent of a professional relationship, and never, ever let rare coin investing get personal.
You’ve probably seen commercials advertising the sale of rare coins, oftentimes with a phone number attached where you can call and order that item. If a coin is truly rare, it won’t be sold over the phone or on television, and more importantly, it won’t be available in high stock, hence the rare aspect of the coin. Don’t bother paying any mind to these phone or television deals, and stick to buying rare coins in person, where you can see it, or in the worst case from a trustworthy dealer online.
While online deals can be great, they are also far more risky than buying in person. Buying from an online auction can be fun, but keep in mind that anyone can sell a product, and the only reference you have is a picture and a username, which, when it comes to spending hundreds of dollars or more, isn’t exactly comforting. If you feel the need to buy at an online auction, do as much research you can on the seller, ensuring that his or her ratings are flawless and reviews of past auctions are positive. Also, whenever you buy online, be sure to use a credit card and never wire money or pay via debit, so you can be certain your money will be recovered in the event that you have been cheated.
Lastly, keep an eye out for a rare coin scam that isn’t as well-known as the others, and is much more difficult to detect.
Even a seasoned investor can fall victim to supposed coin investing groups, and these groups operate much like Bernie Madoff in his infamous scandal. To keep things simple and brief, don’t let anyone else invest in rare coins for you, and do your own rare coin buying and selling, so you know where every penny you spend goes.
Rare coin scams are unfortunately, more common than we would all wish, but luckily, you can stop thieves and scam artists dead in their tracks. Always be cautious and keep an eye out for fishy details or suspicious activity, and if you have any doubts, say ‘NO’.