Pacific Northwest Numismatic Association

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PNNA Home / Reference / Buy-Sell / Consignment

Coin Buying and Selling - Consignment to Coin Dealers

You should carefully consider the available options and their advantages and disadvantages before proceeding.

This method of selling coins, in which the collector chooses a coin dealer to sell his/her coins, but does not receive payment until the coins are actually sold, has become more popular in recent years.


  • As in major auctions, dealers may be willing to accept a smaller commission (perhaps 20%) if they don't have to use their own cash to purchase inventory, which can sometimes remain unsold for months or even years.

  • As with direct sale, this method may be more private and secure than advertising your coins to the public.


  • You don't get paid for your coins right away, and some items may remain unsold.

  • Obvious risk of theft while coins are in dealer's possession, and risk that a dishonest dealer might disappear with your coins.

  • Price uncertainty due to market fluctuations and other factors before your coins are actually sold.


  • This method of sale should only be used with established, reputable dealers, preferable those you have done business with before.

  • Always get a receipt for your coins, agree on a minimum selling price and commission, and ask what happens in the event of loss. Also agree on a time limit after which unsold items should be returned to you.