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Trying To Help My 76 Yo Mother Sell Stamp Collection, She Nor I Have A Clue How To Do This?

 
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Posted 01/14/2020   10:01 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this topic Add NJ0403BS1122 to your friends list Get a Link to this Message
My mom is not an avid or knowledgeable collector but collected stamps "for the grandkids" for the last 30+ years and now realizes they probably aren't worth a lot and her grandkids don't have any monetary or sentimental value attached.

Please can you direct me on tips and first steps for helping my mom;
- take inventory? speadsheet or do you suggest we buy a software tool?
- this may be a dumb question, but does she need to take pictures of every stamp/sheet if we want to try and sell on eBay or some other online site?
- what other tips?

THANK YOU

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Posted 01/14/2020   10:33 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Petert4522 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
It would help if you could show some pictures and tell us your general location

Peter
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Posted 01/14/2020   10:42 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add John Becker to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
For unused US stamps ... The vast majority of US stamps issued in the past 30+ years are abundant in the marketplace and sell at a discount (like 60% of face). Use them!

Similarly, the vast majority of used US stamps from the last 30+ have modest value. Give them to someone who does collect.

Spending time making inventories of stamps since WWII is very time consuming compared to the value involved.

For complete envelopes (covers), such as "First Day of Issue" covers, they are also a glut on the market for the most common designs, although some are better.
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Posted 01/14/2020   11:13 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add DrewM to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
With some photos, it would be a lot easier to have an idea what kind of stamp collection we're talking about.

But I have to tell you that there's a strong likelihood that your Mom's collection is worth very little, perhaps basically nothing. There may be a lot of stamps involved, but they're probably all modern stamps, am I right? If unused, they're worth about their postage value, but dealers won't pay that much for them. Might as well use them on outgoing mail. If used, they're worth less, but that's very little. If there are First Day Covers, souvenir sheets, etc, there may be some added value. If there are many foreign stamps, you never know about value, but modern foreign stamps are also very, very common.

What most people put away from stamps they come across, even over many decades, makes up a large part of the collections dealers are asked to evaluate and a few stamps here and a few stamps there end up nearly always worth next to nothing, not even a hundred dollars in many cases to a dealer. If it's a well organized collection in an album, that might be worth a bit more. If it were my mother, I'd dispose of it (give it to a school?) and tell her I'd sold it for X dollars, and then I'd give her the money from my own pocket. That would make her feel she hadn't wasted all that time and effort. Or put it all on eBay. That's one sure way to see what its value is. Sorry to be so sobering, but it's a common situation, and you shouldn't expect much.

Now watch. It will be a collection of rare old stamps, 19th century covers, and well filled albums, and I'll look like a fool! But I doubt it.
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Edited by DrewM - 01/14/2020 11:18 pm
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Posted 01/15/2020   03:10 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Anthraquinone to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
All good advice especially from DrewM but a couple of pictures would really help to give a considered opinion. Just do not get your hopes up yet.
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Posted 01/15/2020   07:51 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add floortrader to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Put them in a box and list them on eBay with a lot of pictures .Start the bidding at .99 cents . They will find their real value .
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Posted 01/15/2020   2:46 pm  Show Profile Check sinclair2010's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add sinclair2010 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
That's actually not completely true unless you are defining value as that number at which an item sells for under the unique conditions of that particular sale. There is no such thing as some magical price that all items sell for. Prices for the same lot can vary considerably under different circumstances and conditions.
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Posted 01/19/2020   12:15 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add redwoodrandy to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Worth a thousand words.
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