FAQ-How do I sell my stamp collection?

Stamp collection

Stamp collection

So you’ve inherited a stamp collection from Uncle Bob and you don’t know what to do with it? Well, don’t despair! This article will help you to decide the best way to go about selling the stamps (if you decide you don’t want to become a collector yourself, of course).

There are four primary ways of selling a stamp collection. First of all, you can try selling to another collector. However, very few people go this route. Why? Well, because it requires that you have a basic working knowledge of the value of your collection to begin with–if you’ve inherited a collection from a relative, you may have no idea what exactly it is you possess. Also, selling to a collector requires you to have a private collector ready and willing to buy exactly what you have, at that precise moment in time, and for the right price–you may have no idea where to find such a collector.

Secondly, you could try selling your collection on the internet, for example, on Ebay; once again though, be careful! You really have to know the value of what you have in order to make a successful sale and there are many fraudsters ready to take advantage of an inexperienced stamp seller.

So, what if you have no idea what the value of your collection is? In that case, the most viable options available to you are to either sell your collection to a stamp dealer or through an auction house. Let’s start with a stamp dealer.

A stamp dealer is someone who has a vast knowledge of stamps and who has built up a business in selling stamps to the public on a large scale. A dealer is always looking for ways to build up his inventory and is always ready and willing to deal with the public. However, because a dealer is buying your stamps in order to resell them to other customers, he will never be able to give you top dollar, or the catalogue value of your stamps (to be honest though, NO ONE is ever going to give you catalogue value for common stamps, so you might as well dispel that notion right now). On the plus side though, a dealer is ready to conduct a transaction with you immediately and can pay you immediate cash once a deal has been reached; there is no waiting involved.

Obviously, it is important to find an honest dealer to make sure that he gives you a fair evaluation. To do this, you can do a Google search on the company, or ask the dealer for references. Look for someone who has been in business a long time (for example, Arpin Philately has been conducting business since 1969, over 44 years!). You can also check and see if your dealer is a member of any stamp organizations such as the APS (American Philatelic Society), CSDA (Canadian Stamp Dealers Association) or the RPSC (Royal Philatelic Society of Canada). But the best test of a good stamp dealer is longevity in business, vast experience, and happy customers!

Stamp dealers are easy to find in your local phone book or buy searching on the internet and there is usually one close to you. In some cases, depending on your collection and how interested the dealer is, he may even travel to you to give you an evaluation. I would say that the best argument for going to a stamp dealer is this: a stamp dealer accepts diverse content. In other words, a dealer is not just looking for rare stamps. He also wants modern stuff and is willing to buy multiples of a popular item. These items are not usually worth as much, but if you have a large collection, with a lot of what the dealer is looking for, he will be willing to buy.

So, you found an honest dealer who has given you a realistic evaluation of your collection and…..it is no where near what you were hoping for–what now? People are often disappointed to find out that the stamp collection that Uncle Bob spent 50 years building up is not worth much. But remember one thing: no matter what you get, it’s money you didn’t have before!

The other option is to sell your collection through an auction house. Once again you can do a Google search to find the address of a reputable stamp auction house. Or, you can check the advertisement pages in the front of your Unitrade Specialized Catalogue of Canadian Stamps, where several auction houses are listed. What is the advantage of an auction house?

The biggest advantage is this: you most likely will get top dollar for your stamp(s) since you will have access to a larger buying audience. However, there obviously has to be a demand for what you have to offer. One major disadvantage with an auction house is this: many of them are looking for valuable, rare stamps. So, if it isn’t worth their time to sell what you have, they may turn you away. Auction houses don’t usually take in the common, modern stamps that many hobby collectors buy. They are looking for specialized content that will appeal to serious philatelists and collectors with the money to spend hundreds, thousands, if not hundreds of thousands. But, if this is what you have to offer, they will be more than happy to help you out.

With an auction house you may have to wait for your money. Depending on when the next auction is scheduled, you could wait a few months to see any money at all, even if your stamps sell. One reputable auction house only pays you 45 days after the end of the auction.

Some things to note about auction house procedure: Some auction houses charge the buyer a commission on their purchase. Most traditional auction houses charge the consignor (you), a consignment fee (this is how they make their money after all). The consignment fee usually represents 20% of the hammer price, which includes a $25 «lot fee» if your lot sells (which is non-refundable even if your lot doesn’t sell). In other words, if your lot sells for $100, you will receive an amount of $75 = $100 hammer price – $20 (20% consignment) – $5 (the balance of the lot fee). If your lot doesn’t sell, you owe them $25 and they give you your stamps back. Also, if your stamps are valuable, you may have to pay to insure them.

So, in conclusion, it all depends on what you have. And, like any collectible, what you get also depends on buyer demand. Hopefully these few suggestions will get you on your way!

Stamp dealer vs Auction house

Stamp dealer vs Auction house

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151 Responses to FAQ-How do I sell my stamp collection?

  1. Ashok Krishnadas says:

    i have a huge stamps and FDC collection. I am interested in a Buyer. I am located in Baroda, India

  2. Rose says:

    Inherited truimph stamp album with lots of stamps from all over the world as far back as 100 or more years. I need help to evaluate – no idea where to start. Am in southern africa.

  3. gina gurule says:

    I have a bunch of stamps from all over i am interrested in selling them i live in albuquerque new mexico if there is any one interrested please let me know. I have whole books of stamps never been opened and i also have single stamps used and unused.

  4. gina gurule says:

    I have a bunch of stamps from all over I am interrested in selling them, I live in Albuquerque, New Mexico. If you are interrested please let me know. I have booklets that have never been opened like from the olimpics,foreign. I have single stamps that have been used and that are not used mint condition. Let me know and if there is someone out there that can help me know what they are worth I would appriciate it

  5. gina gurule says:

    selling stamps in albuquerque new mexico

  6. Amor says:

    We inherited stamps and still in good condition. We are interested in selling them.

  7. DEREK .E.MAYNARD says:

    Good day, I have in my collection the following..
    1868 6 cent mint, it has small remains of hinge but most of the adhesive
    intact,very clean , no perf breaks or creases, would appreciate your comments and if you would be interested in buying same.
    Yours sincerely,
    Derek Maynard.
    I am an English national living in retirement in South Africa.

  8. Jammy Jamieson says:

    Greetings Lisa, I found your article very informative;FAQ-How do I sell my stamp collection?
    Maybe, I will be offering Arpin my old stamp collection to buy or sell.
    Best Regards
    South Africa

  9. S K Agarwal says:

    Can you advise me of any stamp appraiser in New Delhi India

  10. elizabeth Albertson says:

    Force to sell due to illness stamp collection please contact me bye email

  11. Tina says:

    I have a large stamp collection I inherited. There is over 50 years of collected stamps. Anyone in the Bay Area intetsted?

  12. ashish patel says:

    I have old stamp collection and i and want to sell contect me on 7777909403

  13. elif says:

    Hello. I Elif. From turkey, I am. Very valuable stamps, I have. From the world and turkey. It is outside of the 19th century, the Ottoman empire’, and what I have two stamps. In total, the number of my stamps of 750. 343 one of the stamps of the Republic of Turkey. Dates 1939-1980. The remaining my stamps many countries of the world. The United States, Britain, France, Germany, Italy,Japan, Israel, Pakistan, Hungary,Malta, Poland, Oman, Malaysia,Mauritania, Congo, Mozambique, Indonesia, the Netherlands, Switzerland, Lebanon, Libya, Algeria, East Germany, Cuba,Peru, Spain, Greece, these countries belong to my stamps.. I can send a photos

  14. Madhup Jain says:

    i have huge collection of indian stamps and first day covers which i want to sell.
    Please contact me on 09811436936.

  15. Nadia says:

    i’ve got a stamp collection, i enherrited it from my grandmother. the collection consist of many stamps from Norway, Swaziland, Canada, Israel, Cyprus, Zambia, Malawi, Espana, Zimbabwe, Mozambique, Deutche, Pakistan, Egypte, Portugal, Jersey, Italy, Rhodesia, Brasil, Belgium, Australia, Venezuela, Netherland and then there is a HUGE collection of South African stamps, some dating back to early 1900s and also a HUGE collection from Kenya. Please feel free to contact me [email protected].

  16. revati says:

    Actually ,I have been collecting stamps since childhood, had great craze for it,but somehow i’ve lost interest and want to sell them off.There are a variety of stamps.

  17. Vinita singhal says:

    Hi i m vinita n i want to sell my stamps collection from all over world. any one interested ? Pl. contact seevinita @ yahoo.co.in

  18. Raja Sarkar says:

    I have a bunch of stamps from all over I am interested in selling them, I live in Nairobi Kenya. If you are interested please let me know. I have first day covers issued by the Postal Corporation of Kenya. I have single stamps that have been used and that are not used mint condition. Let me know and if there is someone out there that can help me know what they are worth I would appreciate it. Raja Sarkar [email protected]

  19. Haridas.SHAH says:


  20. Marcia says:

    I would like to sell my stamp collection. lots of stamps. I live in South Africa.

  21. rahul malhotra says:

    I have a stamp collection around three thousand stamp from all over would like to sell,I am presently located in delhi.My telephone no is 9873026422 rahul

  22. Abhishek Nagpal says:

    I have a bunch of stamps from all over I am interested in selling them, I live in Chandigarh,India.If you are interrested please let me know. I have booklets which contain aroung 1000-1500 stamps of different countires,Persons ,animals,commonwealth games. Let me know and if there is someone out there that can help me know what they are worth I would appreciate it.. I would like to sell them.
    Contact No.9888555095

  23. mahesh says:

    I have a good collection of stamps from 1865 till 2014 .world collection.both mint and used.nearly 20000 to 35000 stamps altogether.I would like to sell it.there are nearly 20 albums in all.if any one interested contact me 9946333147-mahesh

  24. mitch-rhodes says:

    i have sold and recommened Wall Street Collectibles in Manhatten NY and used a Broker named Saul Meyer to sell my colection, i have no problem vouching for this company 1-800-224-5942 office and Saul Meyer 917-829-7571

  25. Ashoke Kumar Dutta says:

    I want to sell a commendable lot of old and rare world stamps

  26. Jeanette Wilde Anderson says:

    I have a stamp collection I do not know how to get rid of it as I no londer have room of it. What do I do?

  27. Shawpon says:

    I have some rare stamp collection like i’ve seen in the net. want to sell them. I live in Bangladesh. How do i sell them or whom do i contact.

  28. Matias says:

    Hey 🙂
    I’m interested in selling my stamp collection of Israel from the years 1960-2000,
    they are as new, untouched and in a best preservative conditions.
    I also have a stamp collection of Argentina in the same conditions.
    Feel free to contact me.

  29. Rajkumar says:

    hello everybody i have Indian Miniatures sheets ,Year packs and Full sheets anybody interested please contact

  30. Goplaces says:

    I have a huge stamp collection of over 2 lakh stamps , many of them handed over by my maternal grandfather and father to me both of whom were philatelists ! This collection has over 2000 odd FDC’s including from pre- Indian Independence . Also many mint stamps in good condition …..anyone from Mumbai interested pls mail with complete details on [email protected]

  31. james says:

    Please see video of the majority of book one here.

  32. Jamie c says:

    I have stamps from France .. 1849 and up . Scott’s album value worth about $ 200 000 and selling them for 50% of Scotts value or best offer , some are on sale on stanlygibbson under francestamps .. 30 day money back if not happyj

  33. Myron says:

    I Myron from South Africa. I have England stamps (1D,1p,4D,8P,50P,75P) Germany, Austria, Hungary, Nederland,Magyar, Canada,Rumania, USA (1c, 2c, 5c, 13c and 15c) RSA (1C, 1 ½c, 4c)

  34. john fisher says:

    Hi I am interested in selling my stamp collection and first day cover collection I have a variety of stamps from early English to present day mint and used and a nice mint set of princess Diana of wales

  35. Peter says:

    I want to sell my collection of stamps, 4 books of stamps. interested buyers please contact me on 079 435 5982.

  36. klaus says:

    want to sell my canadian stamps from 1977-1986 mint single vfnh, plate blocks vfnh, used singles vf(some were mint cancelled at post office, gum still on .

  37. Gopal Pasada says:

    I am Gopal Prasada from Uttar Pradesh, India. I have a Book of Stamps which consists stamps of various countries, its name is “Greatest Stamps in the Worlds.” which says that it has Rare of the Rarest stamps in it. These stamps are of 18th and 19th century and are 1087 in numbers. It has stamps of the Countries which are not even there anymore or their names are changed. Interested buyer may contact me through my email id: [email protected]

  38. Raman says:

    Hi there…..I have stamps which are extremely rare and old ones….but each and every stamp in excellent condition. This has been inherited plus I have added many since past 2 decades. Putting it to the market for sale first time….let’s see who gets lucky with them first cum first basis. Based out of Mumbai, India.

    Am looking for some serious buyers of them….Plan to sell them all..r.collection is over 500+ stamps.

    Contact me : [email protected] / WhatsApp no. 9029001684

    Hv a Nice Day!!! Keep Collecting….Keep the Flame Alive

  39. Mr SHARMA BINU says:

    Dear Sir/Madam- I am a keen collector of stamps since many years plus I inherited quite a number of postage stamps from my deceased uncle (he died in early 80’s)-I would like to sell my collection at the earliest. I have been collecting stamps as a hobby; I got stamps all over the world since I had lived abroad twice. I am a self employed person based in new Delhi-India. Please advise me how to proceed further regarding this?? I have inherited them and now want to dispose them off. The collection seems to be interesting and worthy to be sold but having no knowledge about stamps. Can anyone help me or guide me please? Regards SHARMA BINU —- [email protected]

  40. lokesh says:

    I have huge collection of stamps indian& also. Other country want to sell.mint& old from1950 to1985….

  41. rizwan says:

    I have old stamp collection is for sale countries like india, pakistan, australia, japan, france, usa, canada, austria, iraq, egypt etc interested person can contacy by email- [email protected] com

  42. Harjinder says:

    Hii… I have old stamp collection pf almost all the countries and old coins and medals as well… Those who are interested can contact on 9810632952

  43. pankaj says:

    i have collection of stamps wish to sell in need of immediate cash pls contact 9891002890

  44. David Barban says:

    Hi. I am a stamp collector since 1972. (age 8). I want to sell my stamp collection I have 25 albums., a lot of countries, including China, Hong-Kong, Macau, Japan etc… Please, contact me on my Gmail address. I also have a Facebook page. (Just type the name). Forgive the bad scanning, for I am physically handicapped since age 5. Thank you, David Barban

  45. Ali Hamieh says:

    i have many collections from all around the world feel free to contact for further information by email or by whatsapp email:[email protected] phone number:+96170280700

  46. Om says:

    I am a collector selling huge collection of India mint stamps, sheets, sheetlets, miniature sheets, FDCs, British India & Indian States at a very reasonable rate. Check my site: http://omstamps.com

  47. patricia semei says:

    I have a collection of png stamps and other countries to sell

  48. Kapil Nathani says:

    I have a rarest of stamp dating 1818. I want to sell it. Call me at 09871366427.

  49. Appreciate for sharing such a great blog….

    Indian Stamps

  50. Fawaz says:

    I have stamps that I wish to sell. Interested can mail me ,[email protected]

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