Where To Buy Silver
As private investment in precious metals continues to grow, more and more people are asking where to buy silver bullion. Luckily, for the prospective buyer, there are now numerous options that enable you to buy any amount from a single gram up to hundreds of ounces. Listed on this page you will find information about the various methods that are available to purchase silver online, as well as alternative means of obtaining silver for investment or collecting purposes.
Purchasing Silver Online
Buying silver online is a good way to purchase this precious substance because of its convenience regardless of your schedule or location. Although the ability to store value that silver represents is well worth a long trip to acquire, there is also no doubt that it is even better if you can obtain silver in a spare moment, late at night when you have no other task to accomplish, during your lunch break, or on the weekend.
Like all online purchases, buying silver online saves you the gas money, the wear and tear on your car, and the large outlay of your valuable time that is entailed in buying from a brick and mortar location.
Of course, because silver is one of the four major precious metals, there is a high incentive for unscrupulous people to try to sell you fake silver coins. Most sellers are honest, but it takes only one dishonest wretch to turn a purchase into a disaster. Therefore, you need to be careful when purchasing online. This is especially true since you cannot make use of the one truly accurate method of assessing whether a coin on offer is silver, which is to weigh it and compare the weight to the dimensions it ought to have if it is silver.
One of the best methods available to you is buying silver from one of the reputable, highly sophisticated gold and silver websites which specialize in the sale, purchase, and trading of these expensive metals. Some of these sites, such as APMEX the American Precious Metals Exchange (found on the web at www.apmex.com), not only offer gold and silver coins and rounds from all around the world for sale, but give you a large quantity of useful supplemental information as well.
APMEX’s website, for example, provides weekly reports and recaps about the precious metal markets, readily available on their home page. A well designed search function lets you rapidly zero in on exactly the coins you are looking for, searching by the complete name or just a portion of it. A navigation bar along the lefthand side of the page allows you to browse through various categories, such as bullion, coins, and various subcategories. APMEX is one of the finest places on the web to buy your silver today, though there are other options for buying silver online as well.
Buying Silver From eBay
Buying silver coins on eBay is a fairly risky proposition. Many of the coins on sale here are genuine, and the sellers have no intention of cheating you. However, you should base your decision to buy not only on how tempting the deal is, but also on the seller’s previous feedback (especially feedback based on silver sales), and on how much information they are able to supply about the coin. You should note that the most frequently counterfeited bullion coins are silver Chinese Pandas.
However, even ebay feedback scores can be a false indicator of authenticity. Numerous collectors have noted the high feedback scores of ebay sellers who were selling silver krugerrand coins. However, this coin was never minted by the South African government and has no legal tender. Krugerrands are only available as gold bullion coins and as such you should be extremely wary of anyone who tries to pass these coins off as the genuine article.
It’s for this reason we advise against purchasing bullion on ebay and instead recommend you go a reputable and highly trusted source such as APMEX when deciding on where to buy silver online.
Offline Sources For Buying Silver
Silver can be bought offline from many sources, and indeed, it was bought and sold for decades without the convenience of the Internet. Major cities feature shops dealing in coins and precious metals, including the officially sanctioned dealers who receive the coins directly from the government mints. You can also make purchases directly from other collectors, though in this case you should either have documentation proving the authenticity of the coinage or else have enough knowledge to be able to assure yourself that you are acquiring genuine silver bullion or commemorative coins.
Buying offline is usually reserved for those who have plenty of extra time, since you need to count the expense of time that must be invested into traveling to the scene of the sale, and then returning home, into your budget for the purchase. Savings on postage are offset by the cost of filling your car’s gas tank, which may be considerably more expensive than the shipment of a few rolls of coins. You may also find only very limited selections of coins to choose from at brick and mortar stores.
One of the few remaining advantages of purchasing silver offline, other than that you can get your hands on the loot immediately and have a pleasant gloat in private, rather than needing to wait for the mail, is if you are truly paranoid about who knows you have silver and find some way to purchase it more or less anonymously. Ironically, many of the brick and mortar sources of silver can be most easily located using the Internet, and directions to their physical location obtained through free mapping programs such as Google Maps.
Buying Directly From Mints
Some of the world’s mints prefer not to sell directly to the general public, and will only accept wholesale orders from affluent, certified coin dealers or those on a “short list” prepared by the mint on the basis of whatever traits they are looking for (quality of service, ability to buy large quantities, nepotism and patronage, or whatever the local custom is).
The U.S. Treasury is a good example of a mint which will not sell to the general public, but keeps them at arm’s length through a group of select suppliers. Many other mints, however, are not so particular, and are quite happy to sell coins directly to collectors. These mints maintain online catalog pages on their sites, which can be used to order coins, usually by paying with a credit or debit card. Even those mints which do not offer direct sales probably have a page listing businesses that do, some of which have their own online stores.
Obviously, buying directly from the mint is the most rock solid guarantee possible that the coins you are acquiring are genuine, correct, and undamaged. However, there are several limitations to buying coins directly from mints as well. The largest is that their selection is usually very limited. Only the latest coins are probably available, and even these quickly sell out, so the coins of past years must be obtained from elsewhere if you are looking for a specific coin, completing sets, etc.
Another limitation is that their direct sales are often limited to people currently in the same country as the mint, meaning that foreign collectors will need to rely on secondary sources more often than not.