Crafts-Hobbies Vivian | 05 May 2011 04:39 pm

Collecting Coins With Your Kids – An Investment With Big Returns

I remember being 10 years old and standing in my dad’s den. We had saved up a little in
a mutual fund for my brother and I. He asked if we wanted to keep the money in a mutual
fund, or use it to invest in some coins. Being 10 years old, I didn’t have to think very
long. I couldn’t really hold the mutual fund in my hands and admire it like I could a coin. I’m sure that my younger brother felt the same way I did. The decision was unanimous: We would begin collecting coins.

That decision turned out to be one of the best investments that either of us made.
Through whatever process a 10 year-old goes through to make decisions like this, I chose to
collect Franklin half dollars. I think that I had some admiration for Ben Franklin from
studying him in school. The coin also had some aesthetic appeal to me.

Not long after that decision was made, I got a paper route so that I could earn some
extra money to pay for some of these coins. I wish I could say that I saved all of the
money that I got from my paper route to feed by coin-collecting habit. A lot of money was
also spent on candy and other things that a kid with money will buy. I did manage to buy
quite a few Franklin half dollars to add to my collection, though. I would sit at my dad’s
desk in the den and go through my coin catalog to choose a specific coin that I wanted. I’d
then save the money to buy it and start the process all over again. This taught me the
value of a dollar and the value in setting goals.

I spent some time reading about the history of each coin that I collected. I was
interested in what the designs signified and what made the rarest coins so… well, rare.
It seemed incredible to hold something in my hand that was so old and had seen so much
history. I often wondered who all of the people were that held that very coin in their
hands. What had they spent it on? Where were they now? I learned that history actually
had an impact on me and wasn’t just something I read about at school.

My dad, my brother and I spent a lot of time going to coin shows, searching through
catalogs, and just reading about different coins. We began looking at the change that we
had in our pockets and showing each other our “finds”. We spent a lot of time talking about
the coins in our collection and their history.

I still have that set of Franklin half dollars as well as some of the other coins that I
had collected. I’m still adding to them. I know that they’ve gone up in value a bit over
the years, but sometimes I find myself wondering if I would have made more money if I would
have stuck with the mutual fund. Then I think of all of the lessons that I learned.
Lessons about money and history. Then I think of all that time I spent with my dad and my
brother. All of those days spent in my dad’s den talking. The Sunday afternoons driving to
the nearest coin show and all of the time spent together just talking. It’s then that I
realize just how big those returns were.

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