Best Places To Buy Gold Coins in 2023
When you plan to buy gold coins, the first and most important step is to find a reputable dealer with experience and low prices. Gainesville Coins is a trustworthy gold coin dealer with decades of expertise in the gold coin market. Their reputation for honest business and great pricing speaks for itself.
Below we'll examine the best places to buy gold coins, considering both local coin dealers and online gold sellers.
2006-W Reverse Proof 1 oz American Gold Eagle coin
Online Gold Coin Dealer
There are clear advantages to shopping for gold coins online. You have total freedom in terms of viewing all available inventory quickly and easily. There’s no waiting in line in a busy store. You’re able to make a purchase at any time of the day or night, from the privacy of your own home.
A search engine should help you find several gold coin dealers to choose from. There are also several helpful coin dealer directories you can consult, provided by NGC and PCGS. Follow the links to find a seller with an online marketplace.
When visiting a company’s website, keep in mind that a good dealer will likely list their prices in terms of “premium over spot.” This is how much the coin costs above its melt value. Expressing the price this way is much clearer for the customer.
In Person Gold Coin Dealer
You may prefer the personal touch of doing business with a coin dealer in person. There are plenty of options for buying gold coins at a brick-and-mortar location.
Buying gold in person has the distinct advantage of being a face-to-face transaction. You can directly ask questions about your purchase and meet the folks you’ll be buying from. If you’re a coin collector, you have the added perk of being able to physically inspect the coins, as well.
You can quickly locate a local dealer if you simply ask around or check Yellowpages. Consulting a search engine (e.g. Google or Bing) is another easy option. The directories from NGC and PCGS mentioned earlier will also allow you to find a local gold coin seller in your area.
Pre-1933 U.S. gold coins in stacks
Other Options for Buying Gold Coins
It's worth reiterating up front: professional coin dealers are your best option when you shop for gold coins. In most places in North America, there will be a coin dealer relatively close to your locale.
If you have trouble locating a reputable dealer, here are a few alternatives to explore.
You can always find gold coins for sale on auction websites. The most popular among them is eBay, of course. But there are also more niche auction sites that specifically focus on coins, as well.
In terms of collectible gold coins, prestigious auction houses such as Heritage Auctions, Sotheby's, and Stacks-Bowers all are known to offer gold coins. This is a good place to find obscure collectibles, but the availability of any particular gold coin you're looking for may be sporadic.
There are certainly some drawbacks with buying from auction sites, however. First of all, you will end up paying more. Each auction platform takes a cut of the final sale price. On eBay, this fee is about 11%. That naturally means that sellers will increase their prices. Some of the other auction houses charge an even steeper "buyer's premium" of 17%. This fee is paid by the highest bidder in addition to the hammer price.
Your local pawn shop will virtually always be willing to buy or sell gold. In fact, they sell gold in many different forms: coins, bars, jewelry, watches, and so on. You may even find them at relatively cheap prices, depending on how important the condition of the gold item is to you.
That being said, a pawnbroker is not necessarily an expert in gold coins. (They might be! But no guarantee.) The shop owner may only occasionally come across any gold coins, and thus have a very small—or nonexistent—inventory. Still, when you have no other local options, a pawn shop is worth checking.
As a general rule, banks in the United States do not sell gold coins. This has been the case since 1933, when the U.S. abandoned a gold specie standard. You can learn more about this historical turning point by listening to this podcast about the gold standard.
If you live or travel outside of the United States, you may be able to purchase gold coins at a bank branch. This option is still available in places like Canada, Russia, Turkey, and (recently) Zimbabwe—but it is mainly seen in Asia and the Middle East. Keep in mind that not every bank in these regions will have gold coins for sale, and you may have to search around quite extensively.
3 Factors When Deciding Where to Buy Gold Coins and Why
The most important factor when looking for the best gold dealer is trust. Of course, trust is established over time. That can make this a bit of a tricky task.
Here’s what to look for in a trustworthy dealer:
1. Judge Their Professional Reputation
Like any industry, the gold coin business uses objective third parties to help customers find the best options. Buyers can trust a seller that is a member of respected organizations such as the American Numismatic Association (ANA), the Professional Numismatists Guild (PNG), and National Inflation Association (now the Industry Council for Tangible Assets, ICTA). These entities exist to give the consumer a clear answer to which sellers can be trusted.
Another important resource to check is the Better Business Bureau (BBB). Every business is going to face customer complaints, but the BBB will only give an A+ rating to companies that respond to customer concerns. This is usually an excellent indicator of a company with a good reputation.
2. Read Reviews and Word of Mouth
Customer reviews are an excellent resource when searching for a reliable bullion dealer. You will have to use your best judgment: Not every review will be representative of the company as a whole. But they should give you a sense of what the seller does well (and doesn't do so well).
You should also ask your friends and colleagues if they have any experience with the company. How easy is their website to navigate, if they have one? If the dealer is local to you, what was their in-person customer service like? How does their pricing compare to competitors?
Keep in mind that your research may reveal some trade-offs. The safest or most secure option may not be the cheapest; the seller with the fastest "free shipping" may not offer the highest quality product. It will depend upon what aspects of their business are most important to you as a customer.
3. Look for a Variety of Inventory
Gold coins are produced in many different countries around the world. As a result, there are plenty of different kinds of gold coins for potential buyers to choose from. Ideally, the best gold coin dealer will carry a variety of these products.
The British Gold Sovereign coin has been minted since 1489.
Some dealers may specialize in coins from a particular region or time period. For example, pre-1933 U.S. gold coins is always a popular category. If you're interested in buying specific types of gold coins, you might need to browse around to find the right seller for that specialty.
The two main categories of gold coins you will want to look for are:
- modern gold bullion coins, which are generally 99.9% pure gold
- classic gold coins, which are generally 90% pure gold
These two groups of gold products are the bread and butter of nearly all gold coin dealers. Both the classic gold coins and modern bullion are targeted by investors, but the former may also attract interest from coin collectors.
Your Best Option for Buying Gold Coins Online in 2022
Gainesville Coins is your trusted gold coin dealer. They are among the largest distributors of precious metals in North America. Gainesville Coins has a retail storefront in Lutz, Florida—just north of Tampa—as well as international offices in London, Finland, and Singapore. Learn more by following this link. They maintain an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau (BBB) and the company has been featured in respected publications such as Bloomberg, The Washington Post, CNN, Forbes, Newsweek, TheStreet, and Seeking Alpha, among others.
Read more gold and silver buyer's guides from the experts at Gainesville Coins:
Everett has been the head content writer and market analyst at Gainesville Coins since 2013. He has a background in History and is deeply interested in how gold and silver have historically fit into the financial system.
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