Our Pricing

Generally speaking we price our stamps and covers for a percentage of standard catalogue prices for material that is listed, with the percentage depending on the grade of the item. What follows are general guidelines that we follow in setting our prices. Generally in instances where we deviate from these guidelines we will explain in our descriptions what the rationale for our pricing is. Our aim is to price most mid-range and high value material for an amount that will, when discount coupons are applied, most closely approximate what you can expect to pay at auction. A very important consideration to us is consistency: we want to be able to offer the same prices consistently for comparable stamps, so that you can be assured of receiving the same value for your money, no matter when you choose to shop with us. 

Canada and British North America

For Canadian material, our pricing depends on what period the stamps are from, whether or not they are basic stamps, or specialized varieties and whether or not the stamps are hinged. The following tables outline the percentages of Unitrade that we usually apply in determining our prices:

1851-1897 and Provinces 

 Grade  100 95-98 86-94 84/74/64  80/70/60  75/65/55
Under $3 300 200 150 100 80 60
Over $3 300 160-200 110-150 100/70 80/50 60/40

 

The table shows the percentage of Unitrade charged depending on the catalogue price and the numeric grade using our grading system. For this period, the VF grades of 84, 80 and 75 will attract a higher percentage than the F, VG and G grades. It should be noted that Unitrade does not list the G grade, but it can be reckoned as being approximately 50% of the VG grade price. These percentages are applied regardless of whether the stamps are mint hinged, mint NH, unused, or used. Finally, please note that our VF grades are determined using absolute standards, whereas Unitrade uses relative grading for the first perforated issues. Consequently many stamps of the "Cents" issues that would grade VF in Unitrade will only grade F using my grading scale. 

Where the numeric grade falls between the above numbers, i.e. a VF-78 for example, the percentage is interpolated, so that every grade is priced differently. 

In each case the percentage is applied to the relevant Unitrade price for the grade in question. 

1897-1927 and Newfoundland

 Grade  100 95-98 86-94 84/74/64  80/70/60  75/65/55
Under $3 300 200 150 100 80 60
Over $3 NH or used or Newfoundland 200 100-150 80-90 70 50 40
Over $3 hinged 125 80-90 60-70 50 40 30

  

Here all Newfoundland material is priced using the same percentage regardless of whether it is hinged or NH, if mint, and at the same percentage as NH Canadian material. 

 1928-1952 and Newfoundland

 

 Grade  100 95-98 86-94 84/74/64  80/70/60  75/65/55
Under $3 200 150 120 100 80 60
Over $3 NH or used or Newfoundland 200 100-150 80-90 70 50 40
Over $3 hinged 125 80-90 60-70 50 40 30

 

Here, as with the prior period, all Newfoundland material is priced using the same percentage regardless of whether it is hinged or NH, if mint, and at the same percentage as NH Canadian material. 

1953-1977

 Grade  100 95-98 86-94 84/74/64  80/70/60  75/65/55
Under $3 200 150 120 100 80 60
Basic stamps over $3 200 100-150 80-90 70 50 40
Varieties over $3 125 80-90 60-70 50 40 30

 

For this period Unitrade does not price hinged material, though it will generally be adjusted downward by 50% and then the applicable percentage will be applied to that amount. Generally there will be very few instances of stamps grading less than F-65 being offered. However, in the case of some rare modern varieties there can be the occasional VG stamp offered. The pricing for the very high grades over 94 reflects the labour involved in meticulously examining such stamps and grading them, more than their actual scarcity. That being said, most line perforated stamps that are otherwise common in VF condition can still be very scarce in the higher grades. 

1978 to Date

 

 Grade  100 98 94 84/74  80/70  75/65
Under $3 200 150 120 100 80 60
Basic stamps over $3 200 100-150  90 80 70 60
Varieties and better issues 125 90 80 70 50 40

 

In this period the general Unitrade price is little more than double face value for most items. Therefore, we distinguish between this basic material, stamps under $3 and better varieties and regular issues that are valued by Unitrade at a significant premium over face value. The grades shown here do not include anything lower than F-65, and in fact it will be rare to see stamps grading lower than F-70. 

A Numeric Example Illustrating the Use of Discount Coupons

Let's suppose that you are interested in purchasing a mint example of Canada #65, the $5 olive green Jubilee issue. It lists in Unitrade at $6,000 for VFNH, $2,000 for VF OG, $1,000 for F-OG and $500 for VG. 

Our prices for this stamp, based on the above tables and after redeeming the 20% discount coupon for orders over $100 would be as follows:

VF-84 NH - 70% x $6,000 x 80% = $3,360 - 56% of Unitrade.

VF-84 OG - 50% x $2,000 x 80% = $800 - 40% of Unitrade.

VF-80 NH - 50% x $6,000 x 80% = $2,400 - 40% of Unitrade.

VF-80 OG - 40% x $2,000 x 80% = $640 - 32% of Unitrade.

VF-75 NH - 40% x $6,000 x 80% = $1,920 - 32% of Unitrade.

VF-75 OG - 30% x $2,000 x 80% = $480 - 24% of Unitrade.

F-70 OG - 40% x $1,000 x 80% = $320 - 24% of Unitrade.

VG-60 OG - 40% x $500 x 80% = $160 - 24% of Unitrade.

As you can see, these prices very closely approximate what you would expect to pay at a standard auction for this stamp. 

Other Countries

I am in the process of developing my pricing structure for countries other than Canada and will add a section when it is ready.