Frequently Asked Questions

How much are my coins worth?

This is a difficult question to answer accurately without seeing the coin.  There are many factors that determine the value of a coin, such as condition, denomination, metal type, year minted, quantity minted, where it was minted and of course the demand for it.  With all of these factors, it is necessary for an expert to see the coin to determine its value. 

A 1914 penny could be worth 10 cents to over a thousand dollars.  Some important factors for this coin are the mint mark and the condition.  A 1914 penny without a mint mark and in poor condition is worth about 10 cents.  A 1914 penny with a “D” mintmark below the date and in uncirculated condition is worth over a thousand dollars.  So it is best to have an expert look at your coins and evaluate them for you. 

We can evaluate your coins for free at Distinctive Coins with no obligation.  Contact us

Why is my 1964 quarter worth more than a quarter?

Some coins were made with precious metals, such as silver or gold and have an intrinsic value to at least the precious metal. In the United States dimes, quarters, half dollars and dollars dated 1964 or earlier were made of silver. The silver quarter is worth more than a quarter because it is made of silver. So if you have any dimes, quarters, half dollars or dollars dated 1964 or earlier, don’t spend them because they are made of silver! (Also, any half dollar between 1965 and 1970 has some silver.)

Bring them to a trusted expert and you will get paid based on the value of silver. We can evaluate your coins for free at Distinctive Coins. Contact us

Should I clean my coins?

No. Do not clean your coins. Coins are worth more in their original condition. In fact, some coins may develop a colorful toning over the years which can command a premium. Experts can tell when a coin has been cleaned and will pay less for it. Harshly cleaned coins will lose a significant value. So do not clean your coins because once that path is taken, there is no going back

What is 10k, 14k, 18k, 22k and 24k gold?

K stands for karat, which is the unit of gold purity. 24k is pure gold. To find the percentage of pure gold, divide the karat marking by 24 and that will give you the percentage of pure gold. So 18k is 18/24 of pure gold, which is 75% gold and 10k is 10/24 of pure gold, which is 41.7% gold.

How much is my 1943 penny worth?

Most pennies before 1983 were made with copper, however in 1943 copper and nickel were needed for the war effort, so most 1943 pennies were struck in zinc coated steel. There were only a few 1943 pennies made of copper and these are worth a lot of money. There are only about forty copper 1943 pennies known to exist, so most likely your 1943 penny is common and made with zinc coated steel. Contact Us

Should I invest in Gold or Silver?

Over the years, investors have felt that in good times and bad, precious metals are a good investment to protect and possibly increase their wealth. Historically precious metals have always held an intrinsic value, whereas paper investments (stocks, bonds and currencies) have and can become worthless in a short period of time. Gold and silver have been a form of currency for thousands of years and paper money has only been accepted and used for a relatively short period of time. So owning physical precious metals becomes an important option to consider for ones portfolio.

Why is my old coin not worth much money?

There are many factors that determine the value of a coin, such as condition, year minted, quantity minted, where it was minted and of course the demand for it. The coin may be over a hundred years old, but it may be in poor condition and there may have been millions of them made so they are not rare and do not command much money.  Contact Us

If you have any additional questions, please contact us.

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Bolingbrook, Brookfield, Burr Ridge, Clarendon Hills, Countryside, Darien, Elmhurst, Glen Ellyn, Hinsdale, Joliet, LaGrange, Lemont Lisle, Lombard, Naperville, Oak Park, Oakbrook, Orland Park, Palos, Plainfield, Western Springs, Westmont, Wheaton, Willowbrook, Woodridge and others in the Chicago area.

Distinctive Coins, 422 W. 75th Street – Downers Grove, IL   60516   630.968.7700 store / email us