Starting Your Collection
The most logical place to begin your coin collection is in your pockets. You will likely find the beginnings of a great coin collection—all sorts of coin denominations, designs, and dates. Perhaps you want to develop a type set (collecting an example of each coin currently used in circulation), a date set (for example collecting a nickel for each year they were produced), or a personal collection (such as coins of the years in which your children were born).
As you search through your pocket change each day, you may be fortunate to find some older coins that happen to be still in circulation. Building your collection in this way, from your pocket change, is the best way to begin. Later you can gradually advance to coins you purchase.
Get your feet wet at a modest price first. If you want to become a more ambitious collector, you should have an education base from which to cautiously move forward. It would be unwise to spend a lot of money on coins before you understand very much about the hobby.
As you collect, learn as much as you can about coins. Determine if the hobby is for you, then choose a level of sophistication and expense. Coin collecting can be complicated, and there is a learning curve. Keep your accumulation habits modest until you are comfortable that you know in what direction and at what financial cost you want to become involved. Take your time to develop a collection, not an accumulation.
One important thing to learn as you begin collecting is the meaning of the word rare. It equates to simple economics: If there are fewer of a particular coin (supply) than are there people who want to buy that coin (demand), the likelihood of the coin selling for a favorable price is good. The opposite is also true: If there are more of a particular coin available than there are buyers, its value will likely remain unfavorable. In circumstances like these, the value of a coin may be in its precious metal content rather than due to its date.