Coin collecting does not have to be a very expensive enterprise. By simply following a few guidelines, you can start to build a nice collection without breaking the bank. The key is patience and determination – by slowly building up a collection over time, you can eventually work your collection up to those very rare and expensive items through trades and sales.

Specialize
Perhaps the most important thing to consider when starting a coin collection is what type of coins appeal to you. It is unrealistic to expect to be able to collect one of every coin in existence. Instead, choose a specific theme for your collection, knowing you can always add to it later. For example, many collectors choose specific coin denominations as their collection's theme. A collection of dimes, quarters or dollar pieces is much more manageable than going after all denominations at once. Another option is to limit your collection geographically, collecting every state quarter or only international coins. However you decide to do it, narrowing down the scope of your targets is an important first step in building a collection.

Budget
What you decide to specialize in will probably determine how much you need to budget. For instance, collecting gold coins will be more expensive than collecting the state quarters. Therefore, it may be useful to do this step first. Budgeting determines how much you are willing to spend on collecting and should take into account not only the price of purchasing the coins themselves, but also all the accessories such as albums, cleaning supplies and holders. By setting an annual budget, you know how many big purchases you can afford throughout the year. This will help keep you on track without breaking the bank.

Set Goals
Given your budget and specialization, determine what your goals will be in building your collection. Set a realistic timeframe for the kind of collection you would like and then be patient. Allow yourself to be selective when deciding whether or not to purchase a coin. Look for things like originality and grading, and don't be afraid to buy a lower-grade coin to begin with and then trade up when you find a higher-grade version. Goals will keep you on track throughout the collecting process.

Those looking to start their coin collections can find what they need to begin at iCollector. We bring coin auctions from around the world to your computer, making it easy to bid and collect online.