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What Are Some Tips for Collecting Paper Money?

Begin by focusing the collection and deciding what type of paper money you want to collect, such as currency from certain countries around the world or a specific era of time. Familiarize yourself with relevant historical facts so that you know which bills are valuable. Try to assemble complete sets. For example, choose specific notes that have a certain design theme, or hunt for Silver Certificates alone. Whenever possible, use the Friedberg numbering system, which is a detailed and fully illustrated guide for identifying currency notes.

How Is Paper Money Graded?

The physical condition of paper money greatly affects its value and collectability. Typically, paper money grade levels include Good, Very Good, Fine, Very Fine, Extra Fine, About Uncirculated, and Crisp Uncirculated standards. Brand new, uncirculated paper money is the most desirable, and it has a firm, crisp texture without creases, folds, tears, or bent edges.

How Should You Care for a Paper Money Collection?

When handling, storing, and caring for paper money, think of each piece as highly fragile. Wear gloves when handling the money to keep the natural oils from your fingers off the paper. Store the paper money in clear currency holders or albums made from acid-free materials. It is never a good idea to clean paper money, although you can consult a professional about removing damage, wear, and tear. Store paper money in a spot with low humidity and a neutral temperature, keeping it flat in protective holders, out of sunlight.

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