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Vincent Graves Greene Philatelic Research Foundation Rates

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Pillar Of The Community
United States
635 Posts
Posted 08/13/2019   1:02 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add tommy to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
In my opinion, bottom line is that they and their service is excellent, and super high quality and integrity.

Obviously, you don't pay for any services like this where it doesnt make sense to the value of the item

Its a no-brainer if your item is worth more than $200 or so.
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Valued Member
Canada
341 Posts
Posted 08/13/2019   1:09 pm  Show Profile Check gportch's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add gportch to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
The fee structure at the Greene Foundation was set at its current levels with a number of thoughts in mind such as: (1) keep the prices low enough that the average collector can afford to take advantage of our services, (2) keep the prices high enough to help cover some of the costs involved in operating the Expertizing Committee. Some of the expenses that need to be considered in operating the committee are professional photograph of every item submitted, protective covering for each individual item, watermarking fluid (getting pricey), maintenance contract on the VSC6000, consumable fees (bulbs, etc) for the VSC6000, cost of books for the reference library and cost of material for the stamp reference collection, and the list goes on.

Setting the fees on the basis of catalogue prices seems to be the most simple and straight forward method we could use. Truth be known, we could likely justify a modest rate increase but, in the interest of the hobby in general, we are holding tight with the present structure.

Pricing on a 'time & material' basis would involve adding a whole new costly administrative expense to the process. In many cases a huge amount of time is expended by certain committee members on research with respect to the expertizing process. In many cases a member of the Committee will undertake research work outside the committee meeting hours. We have occasionally taken as long as a year with postal history submissions to make sure that we 'get it right'. In many of these extended examinations, the submitter will not only receive the final certificate but will be given a full research report which (on a time & material basis would be valued at several hundreds of dollars).

With respect to the value of my time (comment by Studebaker), I am delighted to be able to volunteer to be a member of this Expertizing Committee. There are rewards that cannot be purchased with money. How many collectors can claim to have held the 2 cent large queen on laid paper, or to have had an opportunity to examine and handle more than a dozen 12 penny blacks? Having the opportunity to play with the VSC6000 on mew submissions every month is a treat that most collectors can never enjoy so to think that my time is not valued is not really a fair statement -- participation is a reward in itself. If everybody who volunteers in this hobby was paid what he was worth we couldn't afford to stay in the hobby.

Garfield
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Posted 08/13/2019   6:49 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add watermark to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Garfield is correct. My submission of the 2c LQ on laid paper is an excellent example of getting a whole lot of information for a very modest price. They had numerous experts look at it, paper manufactures gave them a great deal of information on paper production, Garfield and others at the Greene Foundation tested and retested the stamp in many ways. They wrote a ten page report about the stamp which is still available for reading on the website. I got way more than my moneys worth from the VG Greene Foundation and made some terrific friends also.

Mike
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Posted 08/13/2019   7:34 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Gilles le timbre to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Garfield, Tommy,
I concur with everything you said. The VGG offer a very valuable (indispensable) service to the philathelic community. I recall having some doubt on one of my purchase (Canada # 31) and expertization from the VGG foundationI did confirm this was a true laid paper. When I consider bidding on auctions, the availability of a VGG certificate provides me comfort to bid in confidence, and eventually provide added value to the item it accompanies. Those certificates are kept and cherished the same as the stamp they belong. The cost of certificate, in my own opinion is fair, and overtime, becomes even more valuable. Many collectors have taken for granted the buyers premium at auctions (10-15%), so a certificate such as those of the VGG, is a relatively small price to pay for the assurance it provides, and never loses it value overtime. Keep up the good work at the Foudation.
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Posted 08/13/2019   8:00 pm  Show Profile Check 51studebaker's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add 51studebaker to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
I hope that no one misread my posts as being critical of VGG or that I was in any way saying they were too expensive or otherwise not worth it. (No where did I say anything like that.) My posts were simply voicing my opinion regarding certification organizations (in general) using the 'catalog value' costing model. There are pros and cons to any costing methodology; I thought it a worthwhile discussion.
Don
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Canada
341 Posts
Posted 08/13/2019   8:09 pm  Show Profile Check gportch's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add gportch to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Don, apologies if I implied that you were being critical. I merely wanted to indicate that some things are worth more than money (but it is very decent of you to state that we do have value). And yes, this is a valuable discussion.
Garfield
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Posted 08/13/2019   9:11 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add stallzer to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Which brings me back to an earlier question I had. How do they determine what to charge if there is no catalog value for a given item?
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Canada
817 Posts
Posted 08/13/2019   9:58 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add No1philatelist to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Stalzer, the minimum rate is stated- $40.00 us for you as stated on submission form, if item is listed under $400.00 in either catalogue. Make sure you also do what is noted on the submission of items page below to save trouble later.

Submissions of B.N.A. material from the United States and Overseas: There have been instances where submissions coming from outside Canada were charged GST(Goods and Services Tax) by courier firms or the Post Office. The Canada Border Services Agency has confirmed that this is incorrect. They have indicated to us that submissions should be described as:"Items sent for expertization only, and to be exported back to USA (U.K., Australia, Germany,etc). No commercial value until expertized."
For clarity the above paragraph was taken from the VGG foundation page.
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Edited by No1philatelist - 08/13/2019 10:01 pm
Pillar Of The Community
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Posted 08/14/2019   08:04 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add watermark to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
As I recall I paid $40 + shipping for my certificate on #32. At that time there was no catalog value listed. To me that was a real bargain. I think the expert committee also got their moneys worth worth because they learned a great deal about stamp manufacturing they had previously not known or been aware of. The examination gave them new insights and techniques for examining stamps so they benefit from doing the examinations of the stamps as well.
One has to realize how knowledgeable the experts are and the amount of knowledge and care that goes into determining what a stamp is. These are basically volunteers that get together examine the stamps discuss their findings and make a determination based on their collective knowledge.
Garfield has even approached me in regard to a stamp variety he wished to have more information on. I was happy to share a picture of the variety and show him the details to look for. They go way out of their way to give the best information they can about the stamps they examine. I value their work and trust their findings.
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Edited by watermark - 08/14/2019 08:07 am
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Posted 01/25/2020   4:08 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add stallzer to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
So I'm finally at the point to submit it and now I'm having 2nd thoughts. The cost of expertization as mentioned is $55 including shipping but not including if I put any insurance on it. The issue I'm having now is since it isn't given a value in Unitrade is it worth it? The item is a cover with a Unitrade 75viii major misplaced entry in LR numeral box.

Unitrade lists the used stamp alone at $500.00 in my 2014 issue so not sure where it is in the 2020. Covers are hard to place values on but wold the cover ever top $55 in a sale? What if it never gets listed?

Cover





75viii





2nd stamp. When I reached out to re-entries dot com to confirm the 75viii I was told this stamp also has a re-entry.


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Posted 01/25/2020   7:06 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add littleriverphil to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
My old Scott Classic values an on cover 75 at 10x the minimal listing of .15c, I'd think the same or greater increased value for on cover would apply for two 75viii. Really think there's a chance it won't get listed? Nice corner card, couple of re-entries..?
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Posted 01/25/2020   9:42 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add archerg to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
That's a fine cover with much going for it.

It becomes a personal choice where the the cost of a cert exceeds 10% of the cash value of an item, IMHO.

Does a cert add $55 in value to you, when a discreet pencil notation on the cover suffices to ID it?
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Posted 01/26/2020   05:51 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add angore to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
They could have a hard to identify stamp list and charge an extra fee for those.
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Al
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Canada
341 Posts
Posted 01/26/2020   3:38 pm  Show Profile Check gportch's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add gportch to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Hi Angore.
Please don't suggest a new rate class - that would start a whole new conversation! Who would determine that something is "hard to identify"? The VGGPRF has now issued almost 30,000 certificates and we have never returned a submission with no opinion because we couldn't identify it. As a case in point, last summer we had a submission stated to be "Vancouver Island #1". We knew is was not that and we subsequently determined that the item was cut from a colour plate from Sir John Wilson's book on the Royal Collection! (NOTE: a dreadful waste of a $500 book).
We usually have a pretty good head start because the submitter generally states on the submission just what he thinks the item might be. We initially work on the basis that the item is correctly identified until we prove that to be false at which time our question becomes "If not 'X', then what is it? At hat time, Sherlock Holmes' principle is employed (i.e. Remove the impossible and what remains is the truth)
The truth be known, I think every member of the Committee enjoys the challenge of a tough item.
GJP
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United Kingdom
4640 Posts
Posted 01/26/2020   4:29 pm  Show Profile Check GeoffHa's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add GeoffHa to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
I fear I'd be lucky to get 75 for my musty copy of Sir John's work!
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