The Value of a Stamp

Just a few days ago I talked about the value of a stamp or coin going beyond monetary terms. I stand by that. But having stamps in your collection that have a high dollar value is exciting. In fact, seeing just one or two stamps having a higher catalog value than what you paid for the packet is exciting. So, how do you find this value figure?

First, while checking retail prices may be a indicator of some level of value, you cannot really go by that dollar amount to determine the value of your stamp. The reason is simple and the same reason for why you can’t really judge the value of your car by looking in a car lot or even dog food by checking the average price at the grocery store. The reason is that these retail outlets incur costs obtaining and delivering these items.

Now, as to where you find the value. The Scott Standard Postage Stamp Catalogue is the first reference you should check. Most public libraries have at least the volume containing US stamp issues. If you do find that you may have something of value that you wish to sell or that isn’t listed, you might want to contact out buying department from our Stamps we are Buying page.

As a last note, I hear talk of value most often in discussions where people tell me they wish they had not sold their collection. While checking value can be exciting, just remember that dollar signs aren’t as rewarding as the hobby itself.

Originally posted March 14, 2006

— James the Web guy