The PTS is a trade society for stamp dealers. It does not value stamps, nor does it buy them.
However, we have produced some guide notes, which you may find helpful.
If you feel your stamps may be worth at least £100, we suggest you contact any of the PTS members, or stamp auctioneers in the UK who are listed on under members who may wish to buy them or agree to sell your stamps for you.
Alternatively, search the Members’ Listing and see if there is a dealer in your area, or ring the PTS office when we will help you if we can. (Whilst we do not value stamps as such, we can get a good idea by asking a few questions. In this respect, it helps to have the stamps with you when you ring.)
As a further alternative, scan two or three pages of your choice and e-mail them to us. This is usually enough for us to get an overview.
Please be aware that members may charge for their services. Charges are at the discretion of the individual member. An appendix of PTS recommended charges can be found elsewhere on this website.
Stamp collections may have value if:
- The stamps are in good condition*
- They were issued no later than about 1960
- They are of an individual country or countries
- They include higher face values**
- They are arranged neatly in albums and look as though care and money has at one time been spent on them
* fresh and true colours, not stuck to the page, no portion of the stamp missing, no creases or other damage
** in British “old” money, generally stamps above the 1/- (one shilling) face value
Stamp collections are less likely (unlikely) to have value if:
- They are loose and/or unsorted in a bag
- They are a general “all world” collection with fewer than 100 stamps for each country
- They comprise First Day Covers of the last 30-40 years
- They commemorate a Royal Wedding/Birth/Anniversary or similar
- They comprise any sort of manufactured “instant” collection
- They are in poor condition and/or untidy and/or look in need of TLC
- British Penny Blacks (1d black) are famous, but unfortunately are neither fabulously valuable, nor rare. 68 million were produced and sold. Depending on condition (and other factors) they are currently worth typically £100 to £200 each (less for poor quality, much more for superb).
- Older stamps still on the original envelopes may be worth a premium (sometimes a considerable premium) over and above the value of the stamps used to frank the letter.
- Decimal currency British stamps (with face values in £p and not £sd) are (legally) widely traded at prices well below their nominal face value.
- Stamps with genuine errors of production (for example missing colours) are often worth considerably more than “normal” issues.
- Common stamps frequently have less common varieties, such as shades of colour. The one you have in front of you is statistically much more likely to be the common and cheaper variety, than it is the rare and expensive one.
- Sale by auction will ensure that your stamps fetch a competitive price. Selling directly to a dealer may achieve a better net result. For the highest possible price, sell them yourself (such as on e-Bay), but if you do so, bear in mind that the best items always sell first and dealers are unlikely to want to buy a “rump” or “remaindered” lot, when the best stamps are no longer there.
Disclaimer. These notes are intended to be helpful to you but being no more than a brief overview are not intended to be nor are they to be taken to be an exhaustive guide. PTS members are dealers who have all been carefully vetted by the PTS Council. We strongly recommend that members of the public deal with PTS member dealers only. Any contract you make is with the member, not the PTS itself and the PTS cannot accept any responsibility for any individual transaction.