If you have inherited a stamp collection and have decided that you would like to sell it then there are some practical steps to take before deciding which sales option is best for you. Here’s a quick guide:

  • Assess your stamps – this is your starting point. What kind of condition are they in? Have they been lovingly assembled in albums or randomly dumped in a box? Check how clean the stamps are and whether they have been damaged. If the stamps have been neatly mounted, catalogued and numbered then that’s a clear sign that the collection was valued by its previous owner and may be a good indicator that a new owner would be interested as well.

  • Complete an inventory – this means taking stock of the stamps that you have inherited, If possible, see if you can break the collection down into date ranges and themes based on country of origin and subject matter. Make a note of how many stamps have been mounted, unmounted, used or in mint condition. If you have any invoices or receipts relating to the costs of the stamps when bought then hold on to those as well. By completing an inventory of the stamps you will feel more in control of the collection you have and be better equipped to discuss the collection when it comes to selling.

  • Take to a dealer – once you have completed the inventory then it is advisable to take your collection to a reputable dealer who is a member of the Philatelic Traders Society. They will break down the collection into saleable lots usually based on country of origin, date, theme, condition and value. They will also advise on whether you will be best served by selling the collection to the dealer or going to auction.

  • Time to make a decision – once you know your options you can then decide whether you want to sell the collection direct to the dealer, hold on to it, or sell through an auction. If you decide on the latter then you need to understand that your collection may be broken up and sold across different specialist auctions to get the best price. There is no guarantee however that you will get the price you want and this process will mean that receiving money for your collection will be a slower process.

At Tony Lester Auctions Ltd we have many years experience in buying and selling stamps and we can provide you with a free professional evaluation of your stamp collection. We will give you reliable advice about selling direct or through the stamp auction process and we always have the best interests of our customers at the forefront of our minds. Contact us now to find out more.