Do you know where to find coin in Malaysia? I am not just talking about circulation coin that you can received from your bank but also other place that can help find your coin collections. They're many kind of collectors, some of you might like to to collect error coins, Straits Settlements, Malaya, Malaysia, Silver or gold coin. Whatever coin that you like to collect, its all depends on your interest and your budget. As I always suggest to all my readers, if you want to start collecting, make sure you buy a good book to guide you. Read that book and study them because collecting coins is not rocket science, you need to learn about coin grading, prices, counterfeit and many more thing that I think I had wrote before in my blog. You cannot learn coin grading in one night, it will took years to understand them. For beginner Malaysia coin collectors, you need to buy either KN Boon Book or Steven Tan Standard Catalogue. I don't recommended you buy other book because these are the best book so far in Malaysia coin collecting and some other book have many mistake in them.
Places to find coins in Malaysia:
I think this will be the first place for most of you to find coin collections. You can read my list of coin dealers in Malaysia here; Malaysia coin dealer. Nowadays, you can found many dealers all around Malaysia and they're still many coin dealers that I have not put in that list. Before you go out and buy from any coin dealer, make sure you knew the market price for the coins that you want to buy. Some of the dealers sell their coins at a higher price, while some may look like the sell them at a cheaper price but they will give you low grading, altered, washed or repaired coins. If you're newbies, try buying cheap item first and learn about the grading and help you negotiate better with the dealer in the future. Don't stick to one dealer and don't believe 100% what your dealer is telling you. Do your own research and asked around about the story that dealer is telling you. Some dealer is just want to make profit and telling you that collection is rare and hard to get. While some dealers are selling fake/counterfeit coins together with their original coins and claim they don't know nothing about it. Dealer still the first source to find coins but be aware, they're some unethical dealer out there.
2. Bank Negara Malaysia.
Nowadays, all Malaysia commemorative coins are minted by Kilang Wang Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM). BNM is another place that you must visit if they're new commemorative coins for sale. Just remember, BNM not a place that you can buy old coins, they just sell any commemorative coins that they have in stock on that day. Some of Malaysia coin card can still be found at BNM branches. You can read more about where you can find BNM branches at my malaysiancoin.com blog; Bank Negara Malaysia branches.
3. Buying coins online.
I think these days, buying online is a must for everyone. In Malaysia, you can buy coins online at eBay.my, Mudah.my, lelong.com.my or other online shop that you can find. You can also buy and sell coins and banknotes via Facebook, you can read it here; Facebook numismatic auction. Just remember, you maybe can get cheap coins via online buying but they're also high risk involved. They're scammer and fraudster out there who are trying to sell rare item at a very cheap price. Before you start buying, first thing to do, make sure you check if that seller can be trusted, ask around (private message your friends in Facebook etc). If many people said he/she can be trusted, make sure you asked a lot of question relating to the coin grading or if the coin is genuine.
They're many flea market out there where you can buy coins and banknotes. Some open as early as 6 am but most of them open only on weekend. I start looking for my collection at flea market when I work in Penang in 2000. Lorong Kulit in Penang is a must go if you're an antique collector. They're also many other flea market in Malaysia. Some Malaysian called the local flea market as Pasar Karat. In Sabah, the flea market are known as "Tamu". If you're not from Malaysia, please don't expect to find Uncirculated collection in here, I have many foreign readers who asked me about this. You can expect a good bargain at the flea market but most of the time you need to learn about Malaysia market price for the item you're looking for. Nowadays, some flea market sellers don't sell their item cheaper like the old days. If you're coming to Kuala Lumpur, the best flea market is at Amcorp Mall Flea Market, you can find all the coin dealers in one place on Sunday. I am in a process to write a post about Malaysia flea market list that related to numismatic. Will update it in here later.
When I wrote these article in 2009, money changer in Malaysia is one of the best source to buy coins and banknotes for collection. Nowadays, most of the money changer sell item at a very high price, most of the time, higher then market price. They're still few money changer that sell their item at a good price. I know they're buying at a very cheap price for the old banknotes. For example, they will only pay half of the value for Malaysia RM500 banknote and claimed that notes don't have value. Nowadays, almost all money changer also ready with their KN Boon or Steven Tan books. If they don't know the price, they will contact their friends who have knowledge about the collection. Money changer still a good place to find your collection but not the best place anymore.
Antique shop also a very good source for your coin collection. Most antique shop can be found in any part of Malaysia. Just make sure you know the price of the item you want to buy since some antique shop will put a high price on old silver coin. I found many beautiful unclean coin in antique shop. Some antique shop will put their coin collection in a drawer. You need to asked them if they have any coin for sale. You might be amazed on what you will find.
When I started working in Selangor, I found out that there is some coin seller that you can found in 4D shop. 4D shop including Magnum, Sport Toto or Jackpot. They will start their business when this 4D shop open or having a 4D result day. Some also open a displaying cabinet in 4D shop. I don't find any similar seller in other states yet. If any of you found any similar seller in your states, please do inform me via email or reply to this post. I found 2 sellers so far in Klang.
7. Ar-rahnu (Bank Rakyat, Yapiem etc).-Gold Coin.
If you're gold coin collector, Ar-rahnu is also one of the good source to find someone who want to sell their gold coins. Just make sure you asked people at the counter if they can help you give your card to anyone who want to sell their gold coins. This is one way for me to find my gold coin collection last time but since ar-rahnu stop excepting gold coins, I don't have no more buyer contacting me to sell their collections. I just add this in here if any of you want to try it, who know you get lucky.
8. Pawn shop.-Gold Coin, silver coin.
I know in pawn shop, the coins will be cut in half to make sure they really buy a gold. If your house or work place are near to that pawn shop, you can always deal with them to sell the gold coins to you and asked them to called you before they damaged the coins. They're also some pawn shop that knew that gold coins can get a high value to collectors and try not to damaged the coins. You can buy your gold coin collection at a gold market value but expect to receive your coins with a little bit scratch on the edge. Some Pawn shop also except silver coins and you can buy silver coins from them. The best way to do it is to ask them to called you if they have any coins available for sell.