Precious metals have remained consistently popular investment vehicles for a great many financially-minded people. Some critics believed interest in gold, silver, and platinum would wane, but this has proven not to be the case.
Modern investors worry about stock market bubbles, currency declines, and other unexpected financial mishaps. The Great Recession of the late 2000s absolutely led people to think seriously about putting their money into other vehicles. For this reason, the precious metals market remains a very popular option.
There are many ways to invest in precious metals. Physical bars and coins are two very popular assets an investor can purchase. Investing in precious metals-related stocks is another option, but many prefer to buy the actual physical asset.
Of course, in order to purchase physical precious metals, the buyer has to know where to go. In today’s age, there are scores of different options available to someone who wants to own precious metals. Each option comes with its own positives and negatives. Buyers should examine the pros and cons of each in order to be sure which option is best for them.
Here are a few options to consider when venturing into the world of physical precious metals investing.
Private online dealers who specialize in precious metals can be great sources of high quality physical gold and silver as long as they are legitimate. Counterfeit precious metal coins are occasionally reported, which is why buyers need to make sure they are purchasing from an established and reputable seller.
The dealer should have a proven track record and a few published reviews. No one can sell anything online without reviews and information being revealed somewhere.
With the legitimate companies, there is much to praise. These companies are known for delivering authentic, investment-grade products that ship within a reasonable amount of time. Customer service is usually top of the line.
Many online precious metal bullion dealers are known for a particular specialty such as gold coins. The uniqueness of their coins can add to both rarity and value. For this and other reasons, buying from an online dealer could be the best choice for many.
The common perception about pawn shops is they are easy places to sell valuables or borrow money based on the partial worth of valuables. This is somewhat true. A quick glance inside of a pawn shop should reveal a lot of precious metal jewelry on display. Pawn shop customers probably find jewelry the easiest items to sell.
The “somewhat true” part that is overlooked would be the pawn shop’s ability to sell the items on display. For a buyer looking to pick up gold or silver, a pawn shop might be a great place to check things out in person. In addition to jewelry, it may be possible to find bars and coins, but the bulk of the valuables for sale will likely be jewelry.
Precious metals in the jewelry can be melted down into bars. As long as the jewelry contains more than 99% pure gold or silver, the metal should maintain investment value. For some, the melting part would be a hassle.
A downside of buying physical gold or silver at a pawn shop is that you must take the pawn shop proprietor’s word on the legitimacy of the jewelry on sale. An honest shop may not try to blatantly sell fake jewelry, but mistakes sometimes happen.
In short, be careful about what particular pawn shops you choose to trust with something as valuable as precious metals.
Online Auction Sites
One of the most popular online platforms is eBay, along with other online auction sites. Online buyers can bid on goods they want or make a purchase from the eBay store. The downside is if an auction ends ten days after you bid, the price of gold or silver could drop in that time period. Last minute bids mean more competition. Good for the seller, bad for the buyer.
Also, buying from private sellers online carries the risk of buying fakes or counterfeits. Most products available on eBay or similar online auction platforms are not guaranteed or certified, resulting in countless scams.
Local Coin Shops
Despite the many benefits of buying physical precious metals online, local “brick and mortar” shops should not be ignored. Coin shops are still great sources of high quality gold, silver, platinum, and copper coins. These shops may even keep bullion bars in stock for sale as well.
The one sore spot a buyer might notice about local coin shops would be the limited selection. Small coin shops are exactly that…small. They often cannot afford to maintain a high volume of stock due to space and budget limitations. There are only so many buyers in a local area. Therefore, the shop’s inventory probably won’t be huge.
The great thing about a local coin shop is credibility. An established business in your community has an all-important track record, allowing a local consumer to feel confident about the quality of the metal. Still, the same can be done with an established online seller with a larger inventory as well.
One great benefit to having all these different places to buy precious metals from is that you don’t need to feel rushed into buying. Check out the different sellers and review their background information. Then, make a decision based on what you learn and where you feel the most comfortable buying. You don’t need to rush into anything unnecessarily.
If you are interested in buying physical precious metal coins, bars, or rounds, we invite you to consider Provident Metals. As a certified online dealer of physical gold, silver, platinum, palladium, and copper products, we offer exceptional customer service, a massive selection, affordable prices, guaranteed shipping, and secure online purchasing.