If you want to diversify your investment portfolio and safeguard yourself from stock market turbulence, precious metals are one of the greatest options. Many financial gurus suggest investing in precious metals like silver, gold, and others. However, since buying these metals online can be daunting, it’s always prudent to work with a reputable broker.
Fortunately, there are hundreds of online companies that claim to assist people in purchasing quality precious metals. If you’ve done thorough research, you’ve possibly come across Westminster. This company sells rare coins in silver and gold for startingly cheap prices. But are they that good? And what services exactly do they provide?
This guide will draw your attention to the critical facts about the company before making an investment with them.
But before we proceed,
Warning: We DO NOT recommend Westminster Mint as our top choice if you are looking to invest.
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About Westminster Mint
According to its website, the company claims to be an online marketplace whose goal is to help customers find a range of bullion supplies in terms of rounds, bars, and coins at the most competitive prices and with quick shipping.
Besides modern and ancient issues, certified coins, coins from shipwrecks and hoards, banknotes, and foreign issues, the company also claims they specialize in all aspects of collector coins.
Unlike bullion, collector coins are valued differently due to their rarity, state, origin, mint mark, and era rather than the amount of valuable metal they contain.
One of Westminster Mint’s most notable products is its patented silver bars, for which it is particularly well-known. Before being given to consumers, these bars are coined from .999 pure silver, labelled with purity and weight, and then packed in a clear plastic bag.
Westminster Mint was established and incorporated in the year 2001 in Minnesota. Ian Clay, who currently holds ownership of the company, has overseen its achievement of an A+ rating and BBB accreditation.
The company boasts devoted staff with a detailed understanding of dealing in precious metals. Members are also qualified and experienced in the field of numismatics. The company holds a dealer’s license for certified coins from the Numismatic Guaranty Corporation (NGC), the American Numismatic Association Certification Service (ANACS), and the Professional Coin Grading Service (PCGS).
In addition to the license, the company also has a free mobile app that customers can use to easily track precious metal products, purchase bullion, and keep an eye on market trends.
Products Offered by Westminster Mint
Some of the metal products offered by this company include:
1. Silver Bullion
Unlike gold, silver is a more practical and cheaper way to enjoy the benefits that come with investing in precious metals. Some of the silver products on the company’s website include:
Silver Bullion Coins
Silver coins are fairly cheap, with a weight and purity percentage of about 99.99%. They include:
- Morgan silver dollar
- Australian kangaroo coins
- Canadian maple leaf coins
- Australian philharmonic coins
- Chinese gold panda coin
- American silver eagle
- Silver kookaburra coins
- British silver Tudor beasts
- Silver britannia coins
- Silver koala coins
- Peace silver dollar
Unlike coins, silver bars lack face value since they are primarily made for investments. Plus, when you look at their design, you’ll probably find a unique code, weight, and purity printed on them.
The bars include:
- Fortuna silver bar (1, 5, 10 troy oz)
- Westminster Mint silver bars (1 and 10 oz)
- Silver Bullion Ingots (1 & 10 oz)
These rounds come from different mints and refineries. They include the company’s seal of purity and weight printed on them.
- Indian head silver
- Round package (1 Ounce)
- Saint Gaudens silver bullion
- Type III design silver eagle
- Silver bullion monster box
- Silver American buffalo
2. Gold Bullion
Westminster Mint sells gold bullion products in numerous varieties such that one can easily choose the ones for investments and those for collectibles. Some of the gold bullion products available on the company’s website include:
American Gold Coins
A few examples are:
- Betty Ford first spouse
- American liberty high relief
- Gold Canadian maple leaf
- Gold American buffalo
- Gold American eagle
Pre-1933 Gold Coins
The good part about these precious coins is their NCG and PCSG certifications. They include:
- PCSG MS62 Indian head
- Liberty PCSG MS62
- St. Gaudens
Gold Bullion Coins
The company stocks both domestic and foreign gold bullion coins. Therefore, if you’re seeking high-quality or IRA-approved coins for personal use, their catalog has something for you.
- South African krugerrand
- Chinese panda
- Canadian gold maple leaf
- American gold buffalo
- American gold eagle
The only gold bar available on the company’s website is the PAMP Suisse. As you are aware, PAMP is a division of MKS Switzerland and one of the top suppliers of gold.
3. Rare and Collectible Coins
Westminster Mint also offers several collectible coins for millions of fanatics. Here are some of them:
- W Buffalo NGC PF70
- Ms70 W silver eagle NCG
- W/Silver eagle early release
- W Buffalo PR70 advanced release
Westminster Mint has listed a couple of gold and silver bullions on its web platform, as well as a few features and services. But in order to transport these metals properly, you’ll require a huge number of services. These factors pertain to the company’s standing and the reputation they have built over the years by providing trustworthy service.
As a result of the company’s vast range of product offerings, buyers must go directly to their website and the particular product they intend to purchase to acquire correct pricing information.
Also, keep in mind that you may notice fluctuating prices for a similar item on different days due to the changes in market pricing.
The firm has several payment options on its website you can use when placing an order, but with restrictions.
The maximum amount for orders purchased with a credit or debit card is $25,000. If you are making your first purchase, they may need to authenticate your card with extra identification.
The largest order you can place with a personal check is $50,000. This is especially useful for people who want to place larger orders without a wire transfer. Within ten days of placing your order, the company demands receipt of check payment.
You can also place an order using a bank wire transfer. The website makes no mention of any limitations for wire transactions. The transfer must occur within 48 hours after receiving your purchase confirmation.
Failure to complete your payment within the specified period after purchase confirmation, will result in your transaction being canceled. And in that case, you’ll also be liable for recovering market loss. This means that if there’s a decline in the value of precious metals since you made your purchase, the company will retain the difference.
The majority of precious metals traders follow this standard operating procedure since it helps safeguard them from future losses.
Westminster Mint works tirelessly to fulfill orders from customers quickly. According to our study, cargo typically arrives three days following confirmation. However, the company’s website promises that every dispatched order will be delivered to clients within fifteen days.
The company uses U.S Priority Mail for shipping procedures, and for orders exceeding $100, the business will require the customer’s signature upon delivery.
As for checks, the company holds onto your metals for the 10 days it takes for them to clear. After the package has been shipped, you’ll receive an email with a tracking number, allowing you to track your order should something go wrong.
Each order sent out by the company is fully insured through transit. The insurance is intended to reassure its clients that their precious metals are secure.
Unlike other companies that provide free shipping when you spend a specific amount, Westminster doesn’t. In fact, shipping prices increase with an increase in order size. For instance, shipping rates range from $11.40 for orders up to $300 to $294 for purchases between $50,000 and $100,000.
While the company assures its clients of maximum satisfaction, there are instances where other customers may just not be contented with the company’s products. In that case, you have 30 calendar days to return the item for a refund as long as it’s whole and in sellable condition.
A client’s return will entail the entire purchase price and any applicable taxes. However, handling and shipping fees, like the cost of shipping back your merchandise fully insured, won’t be covered.
Customers should understand that silver and gold bullion coins, bars, rounds, ingots, and wafers are not eligible for returns.
Instead, the company buys them at an ongoing market rate, which can be lower or higher than the initial amount you paid for them. But after a 30-day inspection period, numismatic coins, certified coins, and collectable coins won’t be available for buyback.
Customers can request a return by emailing Returns@coin-rare.com, where they will receive a return authorization number that must be clearly displayed on the return package in order to speed up the return process.
Previous customers were used to ascertain the company’s credibility.
Our analysis of consumer reviews on websites like Trustpilot, Yelp, and the Better Business Bureau led us to the conclusion that while the ratings are satisfactory, they aren’t outstanding. On many websites, they tend to have scores that are above average.
The company had a B rating from Business Consumer Alliance despite having an A+ with BBB (with the B being way below A, AA, and AAA ratings). Yelp gave Westminster Mint 1.5/5 stars.
Most precious metals investment companies often have multiple reviews on Trustpilot, while Westminster Mint just had one. It’s unsettling to see just one review for a firm that has existed for over 20 years while other businesses have thousands of reviews. According to us, this just isn’t enough information to fully rate the company.
Also, the company’s website doesn’t mention IRA services. When buying valuable metals, many buyers prefer adding them to an IRA in order to benefit from the tax advantages provided to IRA owners. The inability to do so with Westminster Mint significantly deters potential investors.
Pros and Cons of Westminster Mint
- The company offers an extensive choice of bars and coins
- Orders come with no cost transit insurance
- You can purchase items and keep tabs on current market pricing with their free smartphone app.
- Few customer reviews about the company
- Existing reviews are just average
- No mention of IRA services on their website
- Regardless of how much you spend, there’s no free shipping
Westminster Review: Our Final Verdict.
Is Westminster Mint a fraud then? No. However, we wouldn’t recommend it owing to insufficient testimonials from previous customers to confirm the firm’s legitimacy. We were also dissatisfied with the company’s continued average ratings across a number of platforms despite its more than 20-year history in business.
The good news, however, is that there exist many precious metal investment firms out there. Most of which offer IRA services and received very positive reviews from previous clients. We suggest doing extra due diligence and choosing any of these firms instead!