The daffodils are up and ready to bloom which is about two weeks early this year – a good sign! We have had another very mild winter overall but still happy to see it go.
We will be at the St Louis Stamp Expo again this year – booth 14. We look forward to seeing some of you again this year and hopefully meet some more of our long time customers. The Expo is scheduled for the same place as in past years – the Renaissance Hotel next to the St Louis air port. The show is scheduled for 1 – 3 April.
This time of year we usually talk about all of the auction house results that we have viewed but we have been avoiding auctions of late because we have bought so many large collections from customers. We have lots of very good material from the Austrian and German areas that we have extracted from lifetime collections of some very serious collectors. We are trying to get as much as possible into our price lists and on our web site. We are doing better getting new items on the web site and much is sold before we can add it too our price lists.
This month we have updated our Germany Part 1 price list. We are not sure if we will be able to publish a new list in April as I am scheduled for some back surgery in the next few weeks. My daughter Jill will hold down the fort if I am out of action for awhile.
On April 8th Michel will release the 2016 Michel Germany Specialized catalogs – Volume 1 and 2 and on 6 June will issue the 2016 Austria Specialized catalog.
The favorable dollar/Euro conversion rate may make it the right time for you replace your old catalogs. You can pre-order the catalogs released!
This year I have ordered these catalogs from
Herr Richard Hummel , Versandbuchhandlung e.K. , Am Gläschen 23, 04420 Markranstädt
Deutschland, Phone: 0341/990 440 1, Fax.: 0341/990 440 2
I will let you know how quickly these catalogs arrive.
The Euro is much lower than last year.. The current exchange rate now is 1 Euro equals $1.10 US. This exchange rate has been holding pretty steady for the past 5 months.
SELLING YOUR COLLECTION
I receive many inquiries asking me for help in selling collections. Most inquiries come from family members who have inherited a collection. Most often they have no stamp collecting experience and little or no idea of the value of the inherited collection.
As a stamp collector you should maintain an inventory of your stamp collection for no other reason than to provide your family with a clue to the value of your collection. An inventory with catalog numbers and either purchase price or catalog values provides an excellent start for family members to know what to do with the collection.
A smart way to keep an inventory now is using your computer spreadsheet. It is easy to set up, record data, and easy to update. If you maintain a spreadsheet you should also print it out periodically and keep a copy in a safe place like your safety deposit box or home safe. You can also keep a copy with your stamp collection.
I recently had a collection owner contact me with an inherited collection accompanied with a hand written inventory which had catalog numbers, whether stamps were **,* or U, noted flaws on valuable stamps, and included catalog prices. Although the catalog prices were 20 years old it was a snap for me to determine the current value of the collection and make a purchase offer.
If you have no inventory and no idea what a collection is worth there are several places to go to get a start. Look up your local stamp clubs on line and then show up at one of their club meetings with stamps in tow. I am sure there will be knowledgeable collectors there who will like to give you an idea of what you have. You can also take the stamps to your local stamp dealer (if you have one). Most stamp dealers will give you a rough estimate of the value of your collection at no charge. Lastly you can visit your local library and look for the 6 volume set of Scott Stamp catalogs. If your collection is in a stamp album, the stamps are most likely sequenced in the same order that they are listed in the Scott catalogs. You can look for the price of your stamps in the catalogs. Keep in mind that the catalog prices are retail prices for stamps in fine/very fine condition. If you sell your stamps to a dealer you will get 25-50% of the catalog value for fine/very fine stamps and less for stamps in lesser condition.
Once you have at least a ball park idea of the value of your collection you are ready to sell. If you have a collection from a specific country or group of countries seek a dealer who specializes in that area. If your collection is worth thousands rather than hundreds of dollars you might consign your collection to an auction house. Auctions have the advantage of offering your stamps to many potential buyers but most auction houses don’t want to handle inexpensive collections as the selling process is costly.
Another suggestion is see if you can determine where the collector bought his stamps. If you can offer the collection to a dealer who sold the stamps to the collector you well might get a better price. I have been a dealer for 45 years and have bought back the same collection more than once!
Contact us at:
R Schneider Stamps
PO Box 23049
Belleville IL 62223
OFFICE 618 277 6152
FAX 618 277 1050