It looks like our particularly long winter is about over. We have a new puppy which needs outside training and I’ve been waiting for weather that I can stand to do the training! We have finally started.
We will be at the St Louis Stamp Expo again this year – booth 15. 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 earlier this year 16 – 18 March.
We will have lots of new material for the show this year as we have acquired the most extensive collections we have yet purchased in the past The best new material is in the German offices and colonies area and all Austrian areas. We have a wide selection of all Scott listed Austria and a great many of the ANK and Michel listed varieties.
This month we have updated our Austria Part A-1 price list which includes Scott #1 through Scott #495. There are many new items listed and the list is two pages longer than the last one.
Next month we will update one of our German colonies price lists to add some recent acquistions.
Our Web Site
Our web site continues to be the source of the majority of our stamp sales. Because of this we are paying a lot of attention to keeping the listings up to date and to adding new material continuously. Every month we add several hundred new images to our listings. We are still concentrating on adding images of the more expensive items and speciality items which require pictures to properly describe.
Jill is taking over responsibility for filling all orders for stamps issued from 1948 to now. These areas constitute a lot of stamps and this means that yours truly will have more room in his office! This division of effort also makes my job a whole lot easier.
Our long relationship with a low Euro to $ conversion rate is now over. Last March the Euro equaled $1.06 US. As I write this the Euro is now valued at $1.22.
The stronger Euro makes buying in European auctions significantly more expensive for US customers.
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 have received collections accompanied by printed inventories listing items in the collection. Listing catalog numbers, whether the items are NH, hinged or used and their condition makes valuing the stamps a snap.
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