How Much Junk Silver Should I Own?

Posted - August 17, 2023
How Much Junk Silver Should I Own?

Junk silver is a popular way to invest in silver bullion. While junk silver coins from early American history might not offer the .9999 fineness associated with modern bullion pieces, these products offer considerable numismatic value. Junk silver, also known as constitutional silver, also typically includes .90 pure silver bullion. Whether you’re interested in buying pure silver at a reasonable price or you’re preparing for potential disaster scenarios, junk silver is a time-honored collectible among bullion fans. 

But how much junk silver should I own? The answer to this question is a bit more complicated than you might think. The amount of junk silver you should collect depends on a number of factors, including your own investment objectives, risk tolerance, and budget. 

Today, we’re guiding investors through everything they need to know in order to answer the core question that we’ve heard time and time again: how much junk silver should I own? 

Factors to Consider

While there are certainly a number of different considerations to keep in mind before investing in gold, silver, or platinum bullion, there are three main factors to consider before answering the question: how much junk silver should I own? 

Below, we’ll cover these three primary considerations: financial goals and objectives, risk tolerance and diversification, and personal circumstances and preferences. 

Financial Goals and Objectives

Your own financial goals and investment objectives should take center stage in any decision-making process as you navigate the world of gold and silver. Junk silver is no exception. As you consider buying junk silver bullion, it’s important to factor in your own long-term goals. 

90% Silver Walking Liberty Half Dollars | $1 Face Value
Silver Walking Liberty Half Dollar

If your goal is to make as much profit from silver bullion as possible, then junk silver might not be the best choice for you. Silver traders generally prefer high-purity bullion pieces like American Silver Eagles or Silver Britannias, especially if their goal is to sell quickly and secure some fiat cash. How much junk silver should I own? Answering this question means that you need to determine your own long-term financial goals and objectives. 

Risk Tolerance and Diversification 

Risk tolerance relates closely to your financial goals. Simply put, risk tolerance refers to how much of a risk you’re willing to take with your investment. All gold and silver investments are inherently risky. The upside to investing in junk silver is that it’s relatively safe compared to some other forms of silver and gold speculation. However, this doesn’t mean that junk silver is without its risks. 

Timing the silver market can be tricky; investor interest in junk 90 silver dollars waxes and wanes over time. How much junk silver should I own? To figure out the answer to this question, consider your own tolerance for risks.  

Personal Circumstances and Preferences

When investors ask us, “how much junk silver should I own,” they usually want to know if this type of precious metal works well with their personal circumstances and preferences. Junk silver coins are beautiful works of art that represent a fascinating period in American history and coinage. But they aren’t for everyone. After all, junk silver coins are usually heavily circulated. It’s very difficult to find coins from the early 1900s or 1800s that could be considered uncirculated. 

Peace Silver Dollar Coin - AU
Peace Silver Dollar

Determining the Ideal Quantity

You aren’t here for a basic explanation of how investing in silver works. Instead, our readers want to know: how much junk silver should I own? To determine the ideal quantity of junk silver you should keep as part of your precious metal portfolio, you’ll need to think about emergency preparedness, wealth preservation, and numismatic collectability. 

Emergency Preparedness

Emergency preparedness is one big reason why some investors buy junk silver. Junk silver is an affordable way to invest in pure silver bullion. And the coins that contain .90 pure silver are highly recognizable, making them potential alternative forms of currency in the case of a major emergency or global conflict. How much junk silver should I own in order to be prepared for a global emergency? Below, we’ll discuss three considerations: potential scenarios, the duration of emergencies, and daily expense calculations. 

Assessing Potential Scenarios and Needs

There are a number of potential global emergencies that could make it necessary for investors to own junk silver. How much junk silver should I own for specific emergencies? Research is always key in the world of investment, but prepping for disaster requires investors to be even more committed to proper and thorough research. 

Before you spend thousands of dollars on junk silver to prepare for an emergency, take some time to think about the potential disasters you’d like to be prepared for. A minor flood or fire could require a bit of silver, but we recommend having a sizable collection if you anticipate a major world conflict or disaster scenario. How much junk silver should I own if I’m preparing for the apocalypse? The answer is quite a lot. 

Estimating the Duration of Emergency Situations 

The length or duration of an emergency situation is the single most important factor in determining: how much junk silver should I own? If you already know the length of time you might need to suffer through in the case of a global or localized disaster, then it should be pretty easy to calculate approximately how much junk silver you might need to hold. 

Calculating Daily Expenses and Required Cash Reserves

Daily expenses are difficult to predict, especially when you’re converting between fiat currency and junk silver. How much junk silver should I own versus cash reserves? We recommend holding both cash and silver if you want to be prepared for a disaster scenario. Even the most experienced doomsday planners might have trouble figuring out how much junk silver to own in the case of an emergency. 

Morgan Silver Dollar Coin - 1878-1904 VG+ Reverse
Morgan Silver Dollar

Our advice is to begin by planning out how much traditional fiat money you’d need to survive in a disaster. You can worry about converting this cash to junk silver after you know how much it would cost to survive in a disaster-ridden world. 

Wealth Preservation 

How much junk silver should I own for wealth preservation? Not all collectors are buying silver for the apocalypse. Many of us prefer silver bullion because it helps us assert greater control over our assets. Even when the value of the United States Dollar declines, junk silver can retain intrinsic value, making it an exceptional option for collectors who are concerned about the future of the global economy. 

Hedging Against Inflation

Silver is a hedge against inflation. This is true for all silver products, including junk silver. How much junk silver should I own to hedge against inflation? As always, the answer to this question depends on a few different factors. First, consider your personal investment objectives and goals. If you have enough money to spend thousands of dollars on junk silver, then using this money to add diversity to your silver portfolio might be a wise move. 

Silver isn’t the only way to combat inflation. Other non-correlated assets can help you to retain profit, even during troubling financial times. But junk silver coins from early American history provide value aside from their base silver content. The numismatic and collectable value of junk silver coins makes them an excellent way to fight against the ravages of inflation. 

Historical Perspective on Silver’s Value

Silver’s price action has been historically favorable. We won’t spend too much time talking about why silver is a good investment in this article. Instead, consider this: junk silver coins in good condition become rarer over time, which increases their value. How much junk silver should I own? The answer to this question, as always, depends on your bullishness on silver bullion generally. 

Numismatic Interests and Collectability 

Your own numismatic interests also obviously play a role in the answer to our question: how much junk silver should I own? Some collectors love the look and feel of hold, historically important bullion coins. Others prefer to put their money on purer types of bullion, such as the Canadian Silver Maple. Again, the choice is yours. 

Guidelines and Recommendations 

If you’ve already decided that junk silver is for you, all that’s left is to plan your first purchase. Below, we’ll cover a couple of major considerations that any junk silver investor should keep in mind. How much junk silver should I own? Consider practical concerns, like budgeting and storage before purchasing junk silver coins. 

Practical Considerations 

We consider two main guidelines to be the most important when you plan: how much junk silver should I own? 

Budgeting and Affordability 

Certain junk silver products are more expensive than others. Some junk silver coins aren’t junk at all and might be worth thousands – or tens of thousands – of dollars. If you’re buying junk silver on a budget, your goal should be to find coins that are newer or in near-cull condition. While these pre-1964 coins will still contain .90 pure silver bullion and function as a solid store of value for years to come, they likely won’t come with the outrageous premium costs associated with other numismatic investments. 

Junk 90% Silver Dimes | $5 Face Value Roll
90 junk silver

Storage and Security Solutions

You should take clear, concerted steps to secure your junk silver. While most junk silver collections don’t require massive safes or industrial storage, we do recommend using a home safe as your .90 silver collection continues to grow. How much junk silver should I own before purchasing a home safe? Generally, it’s time for a safe once your junk silver collection is worth a thousand dollars or more. 

Risks and Challenges

How much junk silver should I own in the current market? This question is one way that smart investors hedge their bets against the volatility of silver. After all, silver is a historically volatile metal that can experience significant price fluctuations over time. Below, we’ll cover the risks and challenges of investing in large quantities of junk silver. 

Market Volatility and Price Fluctuations 

The volatility of the silver market is one major issue that prevents some people from buying junk silver products. The price of silver can take a dive in just one day, and it can appreciate just as quickly. Track the spot price of silver carefully over time to figure out if now is the right time to buy. Whether you’re buying for your financial future or for disaster preparation, it’s important that you try to buy the dip when silver prices fall. How much junk silver should I own, given current market conditions? Research is your best friend as you attempt to answer a question like this. 

Counterfeit Coins and Authentication Risks

Because junk silver coins are extremely old, they come from a time where anti-counterfeiting technologies were rare. This means that quite a few counterfeits exist of popular junk silver coins and silver dollars. 

Storage and Security Concerns

Storage and security concerns should play a pivotal role as you try to decide: how much junk silver should I own? While your regular, junky old silver coins aren’t worth spending thousands of dollars on professional storage and security, this investment may be worthwhile if you find yourself sitting on a sizable stack of numismatically valuable silver coins. How much junk silver should I own before buying professional storage? The answer to this question depends on your own financial situation. 

As you try to buy junk silver bullion, think about how your collection will develop over time. Smart collectors consider the future financial obligations associated with their investment before they get to that point. 

Final Thoughts: How Much Junk Silver Should I Own?

So how much junk silver should you own? As we’ve explained a few different times, your personal financial circumstances, objectives, and preferences should be the first place you look as you work to figure out how much junk silver to buy. People sometimes buy junk silver to secure their financial futures. Others instead buy this unique type of silver bullion with the intent to prepare for disaster scenarios, global conflicts, or natural calamities. 

Hero Bullion sells a wide variety of quality junk silver coins to help you enrich your collection and plan for a stable financial future. Please reach out with any questions you might have. 

About The Author

Michael Roets is a writer and journalist for Hero Bullion. His work explores precious metals news, guides, and commentary.