Step 1: Decide on What Type of Currency to Collect
Large-size types, lower denominations: A collection of $1, $2 and $5 values.
Interesting serial numbers: Low serial numbers such as 00000001, 00001429, 000016776, and others sell for a premium. Another example is a "radar" note, which is currency with thew same serial number forward and backward, such as 12344321 or 44888844.
Star notes: When a note is found defective after printing, it is replaced with a star note. On federal reserve notes, the star is after the serial number, while on all other issues, the star comes before.
Currency errors: All sorts of interesting errors and misprints exist, such as a double denomination, such as a $10 printed on one side and a $5 written on the other. (The serial numbers were blurred a bit.)
Step 2: Know Your Facts
Grade | Numeric rating | Description
Gem Uncirculated | Unc-65 | A note that is flawless.
Choice Uncirculated | Unc-63 | Almost as nice as Gem Uncirculated, but not quite there.
Uncirculated | Unc-60 | Retains its original crispness. It may show signs of improper handling.
About Uncirculated | AU-50, AU-55 and AU-58 | Appears new but shows very slight signs of use.
Extremely Fine | EF-40 and EF-45 | Shows some faint evidence of circulation.
Very Fine | VF-20, VF-25, VF-30 and VF-35 | A note that has been in circulation, but not for long.
Fine | F-12 and F-15 | A note that shows much evidence of circulation.
Very Good | VG-8 and VG-10 | A note that shows considerable wear or circulation.
Good | G-4 | A note that is badly worn.
If you send your currency off to a third party company to be graded, be sure to send it to a reputable company such as PMG.
Step 3: Purchase Your Currency
Step 4: Handling Your Currency
Step 5: Storage
Step 6: Let Your Collection Grow
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