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Ebay A Bad Place To Buy Coins

 
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New Member
United States
38 Posts
 Posted 10/15/2019  7:25 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add Roger Engelken to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
I have had little trouble with ebay, other than a couple of lost in the mail orders which have been refunded. I have been able to build complete year/mint sets from 1942 to 1958, with many of these coming from reputable dealers on ebay, and others from a local coin shop. The only slab ones I get if I buy online are the Walking Liberty half dollars. Returns are almost always available, if needed. You need to educate yourself, but that goes for anything you do.
Pillar of the Community
United States
531 Posts
 Posted 10/15/2019  8:16 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add hfjacinto to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
I purchased from EBay, another coin sale web site and from local coin shops. I found eBay prices to be 20-50% higher than the LCS I have available to me, I found eBay sometimes higher than the other website. But and this is big, when I can't find anywhere else I can find it on eBay. I wouldn't recommend eBay for low cost coins but they are in the running for higher priced. But if you can find and build a good relationship with a LCS, that is worth it to me. I've even gotten a few of my coin collecting buddies to use the LCS I frequent. I take pictures and my buddies buy directly from the shop. I do it for 2 reasons I like going to an LCS to look at coins and I continue the relationship
With the LCS resulting in getting good prices.
Pillar of the Community
United States
965 Posts
 Posted 10/15/2019  8:31 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add merclover to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
I think eBay is offering a lot of way over-priced, over-graded junk, for the most part. I have spent a lot of time of late searching for a few missing mercs for my collection, and I am very disappointed at the amount of cleaned junk on eBay. And the number of poor photos from so called experts is alarming as well. Yeah, there are a few bargains and good sellers on eBay, but both are few and far between.
Bedrock of the Community
United States
12561 Posts
 Posted 10/15/2019  8:45 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add basebal21 to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Good coins are raw for a reason, that's not unique to eBay people just seem to think they're better or believe LCS grading more because they like the owner.
Pillar of the Community
United States
531 Posts
 Posted 10/15/2019  9:20 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add hfjacinto to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
The thing with an LCS is you can actually see the coin. It's not a picture. I can soften the features, update color, increase sharpness on a picture distorting the actual representation of a coin. At an LCS I can see the coin without digital manipulation.
Valued Member
United States
57 Posts
 Posted 10/15/2019  10:41 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add TimNH to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply

Quote:
I found eBay prices to be 20-50% higher than the LCS I have available to me


Wow. What shop is this, and why wouldn't they just sell everything on eBay?
Pillar of the Community
United States
531 Posts
 Posted 10/16/2019  09:50 am  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add hfjacinto to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
I asked mike that question and he said he does sell a few high end items on the bay but it's costly (time ) to set up an eBay shop. Taking pictures of low cost items and shipping and mailing and then there are other costs involved (eBay fees and PayPal and shipping ) that eat into his profit. For example to sell a $10 MHD probably costs $3. So he has to raise the MHD price to $13. It's just cheaper for me to go in, I look through the box of MHD. Only work he did was give me the box and I pay cash, he might sell me the MHD for $8 as I'll buy a few at a time.
Pillar of the Community
Canada
2797 Posts
 Posted 10/16/2019  10:30 am  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add oriole to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
I don't think that we can make blanket statements about eBay being good or bad. I have had good success with eBay recently, mainly getting obscure items that are unattainable locally. Where I live, we have one small show per month and I need a big market to get what I want.

Of course eBay has a lot of junk and overpriced stuff. So do coin shows. You have to know your stuff and be careful, no matter what the market is.
New Member
United States
16 Posts
 Posted 10/16/2019  10:45 am  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add Larry Gosnell to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
And before you hit that buy or make offer button, verify sellers high feedback number and avoid over overseas or out of the country sellers. Avoid high shipping cost. Ebay shipping with tracking should be 3 to 4 dollars at most. Without tracking maybe 1 dollar.
Pillar of the Community
United States
2895 Posts
 Posted 10/16/2019  10:48 am  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add srs77 to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
My local coin shop sells on ebay. He is cheaper if you go into the store for the reasons already stated. The time it takes to get the item onto ebay and then the fees associated along with the risks makes selling from the shop easier. That doesn't mean he doesn't use ebay as a source for selling his coins, he still has success there as well. The nice thing is if I find something he's offering on ebay and want it all I have to do is call him and he'll cut me a cheaper deal because he knows I'll drive to the shop to pick it up and pay for it. No shipping costs and no ebay selling fees.
ANA Member 3171274
Vamming? What's that?
Pillar of the Community
United States
531 Posts
 Posted 10/16/2019  2:06 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add hfjacinto to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply


What srs said.
Bedrock of the Community
United States
18641 Posts
 Posted 10/16/2019  4:38 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add just carl to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply

Quote:
Once again there are NO fees for buyers. There are no eBay fees, there are no paypal fees. The sellers pay the fees.

True however, most sellers attempt to add more to their prices due to that.
just carl
Pillar of the Community
United States
531 Posts
 Posted 10/16/2019  4:57 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add hfjacinto to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply

Quote:
True however, most sellers attempt to add more to their prices due to that.


From my experience most sellers tack the cost to the coin, at least compared to what I can get locally. On inexpensive coins this can be as much as 50% of the coin cost, on an expensive coin ($200+) the cost can be negligible and not really impact the final cost as there are coins you can't buy anywhere but eBay.
Pillar of the Community
Learn More...
United States
8269 Posts
 Posted 10/16/2019  9:51 pm  Show Profile   Check paralyse's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add paralyse to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
I buy about 90% of my coins on eBay. Of the large number of coins that I've purchased (mid 5 figures+ dollar-wise) I can truly state that I've only been burned on a very few occasions and that it was usually something where I knew I might get burned but gambled anyway, or where I let impulse overrule logic and rational thinking because OOH SHINY.

Some of my eBay philosophy:

- Know what you're buying before you buy it. eBay is not the best place to learn about highly-faked series such as early US coins, early gold, 8 Reales, European crowns, Chinese fat man dollars, etc. If you are wanting to get into collecting those sorts of things, get familiar with the real thing up close and in person so that you learn what to look for and you will get a "feel" for when a coin is just not right.

- The right coin is more important than the right now coin. If your budget is $100 a month for coins, and you need a particular coin to fill a hole, and you can snag a holed, bent, gouged, or otherwise example for $90, you'll be better off to wait a few months and save up $300-$500 for a problem-free example than you will be if you "scratch the itch" and blow $90 on the garbage coin.

- Never bid more on a bad photo gamble than you're willing to lose if it's a bust. A $20 bid on a $200 coin with bad photos might work out, but a $175 bid on a $200 coin with bad photos is much more risky proposition

- Buy It Now listings from mega-dealers are often, but not always, priced near, at, or above full retail value. Some of the major sellers (e.g. David Lawrence, West Coast Coins) will take reasonable offers -- sometimes 20% or more below list price -- but you have to ask! If you are a member of a club (EAC, C4, Fly-In, LSCC, JRCS, a local or regional coin club, or whatever) it might be worth it to ask the seller if they'd be willing to give you a small discount if that seller is also part of the same club. Just don't be angry if they tell you no.

- To go with the above, if you see a coin from Big Dealer listed on eBay on a BIN, go to Big Dealer's online web store if they have one and see if the same coin can be purchased for less money if you order it directly from the website. I won't name any particular Big Dealer here but one I am thinking of will list his eBay store items consistently 10% or more above his web site pricing. As stated by srs77 above, if the seller is a dealer close to your location, you can also get better deals sometimes by just going to their physical store in person.

- There are no such things as unsearched rolls/lots/bags/jars/whatever, at least when it comes to eBay.

- An item stored in a safe in a 200 year old building is not more valuable than any other identical item.

- Learn to grade properly and learn how to detect cleaning, environmental damage, and tooling. Never, ever, ever trust a seller's grade opinion unless you've dealt with them before and found their grading to be reasonably accurate (and even then, double check!)

- I've won most of my best "home run" deals about 2-5 AM on Ending Soon auctions. Finding good deals on eBay is work, and will require you to put effort into it. So far this week I have looked at over 2,000 listings and not purchased a single coin. Other times I get lucky and find a "run" of coins from one seller or another and win most of the bids I put in.

- To go with the above, bid to win. If you are willing to spend $60 on a coin, and the auction is at $20 with 10 minutes left, don't bid $30 for your max bid trying to sneak in below your budget, because someone else will snag it for $35 and you'll be feeling pretty silly.

- When you find good sellers, Favorite them and visit them often. Sellers who you do business with on a regular basis are more likely to cut you deals and take your best offers.
Member ANA - EAC - TNA - SSDC
Specializing in 1932-1964 Washington quarters

"Most of the things worth doing in the world had been declared impossible before they were done." -- Louis D. Brandeis
Valued Member
United States
171 Posts
 Posted 10/16/2019  10:23 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add Captain Jack to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Just think of the nightmares older collectors had before eBay.... and before the internet.... most of the stuff we have now would have been near impossible 30 years ago. To get a hold of the coins we can get a hold of now, vs back then and most of it is because of eBay.
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