One of the first rules of coin collecting is that condition is key. If you have two coins of the same denomination and year, the coin that’s in better condition will almost always be worth more. This probably sounds obvious, even if you don’t have any experience collecting coins. Putting this idea into practice, however, is a bit more complicated. One collector might describe a coin’s condition as “pretty good”, while another might say the same coin is in “rough shape”. To keep things simple for buyers and sellers, we would need to develop a standardized, universal system to categorize a coin’s condition. Luckily, such a system exists, and we call it coin grading.