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Frequently Asked Questions

Your most frequently asked questions answered

Everything you need to know about buying, selling and investing with The Coin Cabinet — including how to bid, payment and shipping details, and our third-party grading service.

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Buying at Auction

Bidding - Account Registration

Create an account

Sign up for an account on the Register & Bid page, or download our app. (To ensure that the app is up-to-date, please enable the background app refresh in your phone settings.)

We require your name, telephone number and email address to create an account. For bidding limits over £10,000 we also need a copy of your passport or driving licence. Once registered you can:

  • Bid live and pre-bid before auctions
  • Register for upcoming auctions
  • Access your order history
  • Save multiple shipping addresses
  • Send and receive messages
  • Save items to your wish list
  • Track new orders.

Register to bid in an upcoming auction

  • Create an account before proceeding with your registration to bid
  • Ensure that you are logged-in
  • Click on ‘Register to bid’ or ‘Bid now’ (every lot will also have a ‘bid’ button, which will take you to the same bidder registration form)
  • Enter your full contact details, noting that we may get in touch with you to verify this information, including bank references. We approve all bids; generally within 24 hours. To ensure timely registration, please do so well in advance of an auction (for security purposes, bidders must reregister for every auction)
  • You will receive an email confirming approval to bid and a paddle number for the auction.

Bidding - Placing Bids

There are two bidding sessions for each auction: the live online auction, and pre-bidding, which is open for 10 days leading up to the live auction.

Placing bids before the auction (pre-bidding)

  • Absentee bids can be placed as soon as an auction opens, which is announced by email.
  • Bids placed during this period are called pre-bids. If you are outbid, you will receive notification via email and/or within the app. Your maximum bid can be raised if required.

Bidding in a live auction

  • If this is your first time bidding, please familiarise yourself with the lot descriptions and bidding increments. You can read more about these below.
  • Each lot is allocated 10 seconds bidding, with fair warning at 5 seconds.

Bidding - Bid Increments

The Coin Cabinet auction platform uses predetermined bidding increments, and does not accept uneven bids. (For example, a £730 bid is not permitted, and would be rounded down to the nearest even increment, £725.) The bidding increments are as follows:

  • £1—20 bid step = £1
  • £20—50 bid step = £2
  • £50—200 bid step = £5
  • £200—500 bid step = £10
  • £500—1,000 bid step = £25
  • £1000—2,000 bid step = £50
  • £2,000—5,000 bid step = £100
  • £5,000—10,000 bid step = £250
  • £10,000—20,000 bid step = £500
  • £20,000—50,000 bid step = £1,000
  • £50,000—100,000 bid step = £2,500
  • £100,000 and up bid step = £5,000

Bidding - Lot Descriptions

Lot descriptions are the catalogue details of a coin’s mint, date, denomination, condition, size, weight and composition, along with an explanation of the design and text. Read more about terms used below in Coin terms.

The following is a lot description, with an explanation below.

GREAT BRITAIN. George III, 1760-1824 

Country, regnal years of monarch

Sovereign, 1820. London. Open 2

Value and denomination, date. Mint. Variety

Laureate head right; date below, with open 2; GEORGIUS III D:G: BRITANNIAR: REX F:D:. / St George slaying the dragon right within Garter; HONI · SOIT · QUI · MAL · Y · PENSE

Design description and type

Good extremely fine and lustrous

We use the International grading scale for raw (ungraded/not encapsulated) coins; the Sheldon 70-point grading scale for third-party graded coins

Reference: Fr-371; KM-674; Marsh-4; S-3785C

Reference works where the coin is described. This lot description includes: Friedberg (Gold Coins of the World); Krause & Mishler (Standard Catalog of World Gold Coins); Marsh (The Gold Sovereign); Spink (Coins of England and the United Kingdom). Note: for Australian sovereigns we use McDonald (The Pocket Guide to Australian Coins and Banknotes

Mintage: 2,101,994.

The number of coins of a particular date struck at a given mint during a specific year

Diameter: 22.05 mm.

Metric measurement

Weight: 7.9881 g.

Metric weight

Composition: 916/1000 Gold

916/1000 = 91.66% = 22 carat, the remaining 8.33% primarily a copper alloy. (Note: sovereigns (including ½ sovereigns, £2 and £5) are struck in rose gold. This is because gold is inherently a soft metal and using an alloy with a harder metal such as copper makes the coins more durable.)

Post-Sale - Payment

When a lot is sold, the successful bidder will be presented with the invoice itemising the total amount due. All invoices must be paid within 7 days of receipt of invoice, and The Coin Cabinet reserves the right to pursue non-payment of any sums owing.

This includes, but is not limited to:

  • Rejecting participation in any future auction
  • Handing over to a debt collection agency
  • Legal action
  • Any other action we deem necessary or appropriate.

We accept payment by bank transfer in GBP, USD, EUR and CHF. Payment by cheque in GBP only. We do not accept PayPal or credit/debit card.

  • Your bid activity and results will be available in real time, while finalised results will appear once the auction has ended
  • If any of your bids are successful, your invoice will be emailed after the auction, including payment advice
  • Once payment has been received in full, we will proceed with shipping.

Post-sale - Delivery and Collection

Delivery of your coins

  • You will be notified when your goods have been dispatched to you. The message will contain tracking details in addition to any reasons for delays
  • We are unable to accept any liability for packages that have been delivered to houses of multiple occupancy or work addresses once the package has been signed for or confirmed as delivered by our couriers to that address
  • Ownership of goods passes to you once full payment is received and a signature has been accepted at the address provided
  • Failure to deliver an order on our part will result in a full refund of the original amount paid or goods as a replacement
  • If we receive no communication from you regarding any problems within 7 days of delivery, you are deemed to have received the goods in full
  • If your package shows signs of tampering and/or damage, do not sign for and accept delivery of the package. Not signing will result in the return of the package to our address at 26 Seymour Street, London W1H 7JA. Should this occur, please contact us immediately.

Collecting your coins from The Coin Cabinet offices

  • Orders that have been fully paid in advance can be collected from our offices once you receive notification that your items are ready for collection
  • On pick up you must produce identification and a copy of the invoice
  • We cannot release items to third parties unless we receive written authorisation from you in advance.

Address

The Coin Cabinet offices and delivery address is:

26 Seymour Street

London W1H 7JA

United Kingdom

Post-Sale - Returns

While we do our best to describe items accurately and rely on third-party grading companies to provide professional grading services to catalogue coins, it is possible for items to be incorrectly described, mixed up in the sales process or damaged in transit. On such occasions, we accept returns of auction goods. Please note that auction sales are not covered by the Consumer Protection Act 2000 — Distance Selling regulations. This means that coins cannot be returned under normal circumstances.

Where coins have been graded by PCGS or NGC and you disagree with the grade, we refer to our Auction terms & conditions, and ask that you take up the matter directly with the grading company.

Post-Sale - Shipping Costs

Please note that the following prices are excluding VAT.

UK orders

All UK orders are shipped via DHL Express. The cost of insurance cover is 0.1% of the order total, which will be added to the invoice.

UK Orders - Shipping Costs

Europe orders

Orders to mainland Europe are shipped via Royal Mail up to an order value of £1,000, and via DHL on order values above £1,000. The cost of insurance cover is 0.5% of the order total, which will be added to the invoice.

European Orders - Shipping Costs

Rest of world

Orders to rest of the world are shipped via Royal Mail up to an order value of £2,500, and via DHL on order values above £2,500. The cost of insurance cover is 0.5% of the order total, which will be added to the invoice.

World Orders - Shipping Costs

 

Selling at Auction

Selling at Auction - Consigning your coins

Before the sale

  • To start the consignment process, please complete the webform.
  • Our specialists will review your submission at no cost. If your items meet our quality standards and minimum consignment value, we will recommend the most effective way to sell your property
  • Should you wish to have your coins graded before consignment, we offer a seamless third-party coin grading service with discounted seller’s commission. Go to the Coin grading service section for more information
  • For eligible coins, we will discuss with you the upcoming auctions most suitable for your consignment
  • A DocuSign Consignment Agreement will be sent to you for signing
  • We will assist you with shipping to our offices (see Packing and shipping for more information)
  • Once we receive your coins, we will photograph and catalogue them in preparation for the agreed auction.

How are estimates determined?

All coins are offered at auction without reserve, at 10% below their melt value regardless of valuation. By agreement, we can guarantee a minimum amount for very rare items (if guaranteed items end up selling below the guarantee, The Coin Cabinet will reimburse the difference).

How much do we charge for selling your coins?

We charge a standard seller’s commission of 10%, reduced to 9% for coins graded through our third-party coin grading service.

Will my coins appear in the next available auction?

Our flagship monthly auction is complemented by a programme of regular specialist auctions throughout the year. We cannot guarantee that your consignment will appear in the next available auction.

After the sale

  • After your coins have been sold, you will receive a report detailing prices achieved at auction and net proceeds of the sale with agreed expenses and our seller’s commission deducted
  • Provided that payment for the coins has been received in full, we will pay the funds to your nominated account approximately 30 days after the auction
  • Remittance will be paid in GBP by bank transfer, processed on the last bank day of the week.

Selling at Auction - Packing and Shipping

Shipping to The Coin Cabinet

  • You must notify us in advance of sending your property. For our insurance to apply to your shipment, we must arrange and pay for the pickup by courier (DHL or FedEx). The cost of us providing this service will be deducted from the proceeds of sale
  • You can send goods to us at your own arrangement and risk, but you must still notify us before proceeding with shipment
  • Please note that if items are not packed according to the guidelines below, they will not be covered by The Coin Cabinet’s insurance. If your property is damaged in delivery we do not hold responsibility or liability for any losses associated with the damage.

Personal delivery to The Coin Cabinet

By prior arrangement, you can personally deliver your property to our offices.

Address

The Coin Cabinet office and delivery address is:

26 Seymour Street

London W1H 7JA

United Kingdom

Packing guidelines — ungraded (raw) coins

  • Individually placed in plastic flips unless they are already in plastic capsules. Check that the flips and/or capsules are intact without cracks or holes and that there is a functioning closing mechanism
  • The flips and/or capsules must be tightly closed so that coins do not fall out in transit
  • Raw coins that are in their original boxes can be left in the box, assuming that the box closes properly. Please check that the capsules are functioning properly and are tightly closed.

Packing guidelines — graded (encapsulated) coins

Items must be individually wrapped in bubble wrap or other protective packaging to ensure that it does not come undone in transit.

Packing the inner box or envelope

  • All coins, whether raw or graded, must be securely placed in the inner box. Whether using a box or padded envelope depends on the number of coins and whether they are raw or graded. If you are using an envelope, this must be a padded type in a material that can withstand some pressure from sharp objects
  • If using a box, it must be sturdy and able to withstand pressure applied to the exterior. Make sure items in the inner box are tightly packed. Fill up with paper, bubble wrap or other soft material to make sure items do not move around. Close the envelope or box securely, using tape if necessary.

Packing the outer box or envelope

  • Place the inner box or envelope inside an outer box or envelope
  • The inner box or envelope should not move freely inside the outer box. Fill up with paper, bubble wrap or other soft material if necessary. If possible, use a box supplied by the courier of choice, such as a FedEx labelled box, or DHL labelled envelope
  • Do not advertise the contents of the package
  • Do not create your own commercial invoice, The Coin Cabinet will provide one
  • Print and attach the labels and any commercial invoices (if The Coin Cabinet has arranged pickup, we will send these to you by email) and hand to the courier or place inside a pouch attached to the outside of the parcel.

Coin Grading Service

Coin Grading Service - Third-party grading with The Coin Cabinet

For those wishing to enhance their collection or submit their coins for grading before auction consignment, The Coin Cabinet offers a grading service through the PCGS and NGC. These companies are the industry standard for the authentication, grading, photography and encapsulating of coins, providing clients and buyers with the security of universally recognised and objective grading.

While both companies offer a similar service, The Coin Cabinet recommends using PCGS for highly valuable items and those being consigned for auction to take advantage of their TrueView (high-resolution) image service. These are the best in the industry, included free-of-charge in tiers from the ‘Regular’ service and above.

We offer a discounted seller’s commission of 9% for coins graded through our service with PCGS and NGC.

Submitting your coins for grading

  • Fill out the webform
  • You can make a range of requests on the webform, such as special labels, oversize holders and TrueView images. We recommend grading through PCGS to take advantage of TrueView, a downloadable high-resolution image of the obverse and reverse of your coin. TrueView offers the best-in-class showcase of your coin for our auction listings, as well as an archival image for your collection
  • You will receive an email confirmation from The Coin Cabinet, outlining information about shipping and the next steps
  • Once your coins have been received at our offices, you will receive a series of emails at each step of the process, from shipping to your chosen grading company, notification of your grades, and shipping of your coins to The Coin Cabinet for either consignment or return. For more detailed steps, please refer to the Overview of certification and grading section below

Coin Grading Service - Overview of Certification and Grading

The Coin Cabinet’s third-party independent coin grading service allows clients to grade their coins as an integral part of the consignment process, or to ensure their collection is certified to an internationally recognised standard.

Once grading submissions have been received, the coins will be shipped to the chosen company and enter their authentication and grading schedule. At key steps in the timeline, clients will receive an email update from The Coin Cabinet.

PCGS: grading processes and sequence

  • On arrival, submission are itemised, logged into the PCGS system and separated based on their service level marked on the outside of the package. After verifying the coins and service level, the identifying information is removed from the order and the submission is assigned a generic order number, which is used to track the coin throughout the grading process
  • Coins are counted again and labels are placed on the outside of each coin flip. The label assigned to each coin contains information including the order number and individual certification number — that is the same certification number that will appear on the PCGS label once the coin is graded
  • The coins are now ready for grading. Each order is distributed to graders based on their particular skill and expertise. Usually 3-4 graders are assigned to every coin for grading and verification. If the grades of the first two graders match, the coin would then go to grading verification; if the opinion of the first two graders don’t match, that coin will be assigned to an additional grader whose opinion is required to ‘break the tie.’ Following this, the coin would still be assigned to a final grader for verification to make sure the grade is accurate and consistent. PCGS uses the internationally recognised 70-point Sheldon scale
  • Once the grades have been assigned in the database and labels printed, the coins are encapsulated with the appropriate holders sonically sealed in tamper-evident holders
  • A grader will check the encapsulated coins for accuracy and consistency, before they are reunited with and checked against the original submission. Coins and holders are examined for defects such as scratched cases or improper information on the PCGS label that may have been overlooked in earlier stages. Upon completion of these checks and imaging (such as TrueView high-resolution photography), an email confirmation of the grades is sent
  • The final stage is completed when the submission is packaged and prepared for return delivery to The Coin Cabinet.

NGC: grading processes and sequence

  • Newly arrived submissions are verified to ensure that the number of coins in each package matches the number shown on the submission invoice. A more detailed comparison is then made to ensure that descriptions by date, denomination and mintmark correspond to the actual coins
  • The coins are entered into NGC’s database, barcoded and securely stored until ready for assessment. At this stage, submissions are anonymised so that all authentication, certification and grading processes are unbiased
  • At least two professional numismatists examine every coin when grading. Each is examined by one NGC coin grader at a time, who enters the coin grade into the system. The grading scale used by NGC is the globally recognised Sheldon scale. Proof issues incorporate the same grades, with proof coins noted with the prefix PF for all grades 1–70. A 70 designation is a Mint State coin, having no post-production imperfections at 5x magnification
  • After coins have been graded, the now certified coins are ready for encapsulation. Here, labels are printed out bearing the following text: the coin’s date, mintmark (if any), denomination, variety (if any), grade, special designation and its identification number. This last item is extremely important, as it serves to make each certified coin label unique
  • The newly printed labels are matched with the NGC-certified coins to be encapsulated with them. The coins are now ready to be placed inside a plastic core piece that holds it securely within the transparent holder. The core, like other components of the holder, is made of inert material that won't affect the encapsulated coin
  • After encapsulation, the coins undergo a final inspection. An industry professional examines each encapsulated coin to make certain the grade and its accompanying descriptive information is correct on the label. This professional also inspects each coin for any flaws on its holder
  • When all the coins have been inspected, they’re ready for shipping. NGC verifies the method of transport as selected by the submitter on the invoice and prepares the coins for return delivery to The Coin Cabinet.

Investment Portfolio Service

Investment Portfolio Service - How it works

The Coin Cabinet’s portfolio service offers clients bespoke advice on building a collection of investment-quality gold coins based on budget, interests and risk profile.

Our initial discussion will focus on:

  • Your risk and return requirements
  • Your knowledge of and interest in coins
  • How we value coins, how different grades affect value, and why this matters
  • How much you are willing to invest in a portfolio, and investment horizon.

We will also discuss the differences between coins, or asset classes:

  • Limited edition modern proofs from the Royal Mint
  • Semi-numismatic coins, particularly British sovereigns
  • Rare coins
  • Bullion coins.

Based on the investment proposed, we provide a break-down of recommended assets much like an an equity portfolio, showing associated risks and potential returns. The Coin Cabinet investment portfolios focus on the longer-term, underpinned by our comprehensive archive of monthly auction data. A portfolio might offer an emphasis or mix of the following:

  • Coins with a higher volatility/risk, with greater potential returns
  • Coins with relative price stability, linked to the gold price.

In our communication with our clients we often discuss:

  • The gold price, and our long-term view
  • Why gold is inversely correlated to US real yields
  • Flows into and out of gold exchange traded funds
  • How the USD relates to the gold price
  • Buying gold across different currencies
  • Gold and the activity of central banks.

The Coin Cabinet’s monthly auctions provide us with a comprehensive overview of market valuations and buying trends of primarily British and Commonwealth coins. Should you wish to look at past auctions and the direction of the market, our archive of past auctions is accessible here.

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