Needless to say, some stamps are more valuable than others. Some people just want to collect any type of stamp that they can get. Others are interested in getting their hands on the more valuable variety. There are many different things that determine stamp collecting values. This article will discuss some of the most important.
Tips for Understanding Stamp Collecting Values
Ideally, you'll want your collection to consist of as many unused stamps as possible. Stamps that have been in circulation at some point in time may be valuable, but not nearly as valuable as their unused counterparts. Stamps that haven't been used are called mint stamps.
One of the most important things that determine stamp collecting values is the condition that the stamps are in. If the stamp is damaged in some way, then it won't be as valuable. You can easily cause damage to your stamps and lower the value of your collection if you don't store them like you're supposed to. That's why it's always important to store them properly.
An expert can take a look at your stamps and grade the members based on different factors. The image may not be positioned where it's supposed to be, which would lead to a lower grade. Other grading factors include the quality of the image's color, condition of the perforations, and size of cancellation.
When it comes to stamp collecting values, errors are usually bad. However, that's not always the case. Sometimes, a stamp that has an error will be worth more than its error-free counterparts. Of course, you don't want to just go around buying error-laden stamps. Only some are worth the investment.
The age of the stamp will definitely affect stamp collecting values too. The older they are, the more they'll usually be worth. If you have one that was from the 1800s, then you really may have something valuable on your hands. Just because a stamp isn't old doesn't mean it won't be worth anything though. Therefore, you shouldn't necessarily disregard relatively current stamps.
It should go without saying, but there are many different types of stamps. One of the most popular types to collect is the postage stamp. Your standard postage stamp likely won't be worth more than the postage that was paid for it though. However, special stamps like the commemorative variety are probably worth adding to your collection because their stamp collecting values will probably be higher.
The country of origin will also affect stamp collecting values. You should have little trouble finding out which country a particular stamp originated in since it's usually printed right on them. Generally speaking, most collectors value their own country's stamps more highly than others.
If you're interested in stamp collecting values, then you'll need to rely on much more than just guesswork. It's best that you invest in a high-quality stamp guide. This will help you determine the average market value of the stamps in your collection.
These are some of the most important things that determine stamp collecting values. After learning a bit more about the value of your stamps, hopefully you'll find one that's worth a lot.
2010 Guide to US Stamp Values by US Postal Service, 37th Edition
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