Investments are a great way to build your personal capital. Usually you find something like property, stocks, art, or other things that will grow in value over time and you put money into it and then wait. But eventually it comes time to sell your investment, or get your money out. In some cases you may have even inherited the investment item and are wondering, now what?
Old Stock Certificates
From time to time you may run into actual stock certificates from a former investment, these are sometimes also referred to as bearer form stocks. Finding these may mean you found a treasure that has been steeping in value, or a piece of paper from a ‘once was’ company. To cash these in you need to find out the company they belong to by looking at the CUSIP number. With that you can do research at libraries, or sites like Yahoo Finance to find out more about the company, if it is still trading, and how you can connect with the transfer agent who can put the certificates in your name.
If you are able to do that, then you can sell your bearers for current market value, but if there is no information or the company no longer exists or trades, then you can shred the certificates because they are no longer valuable.
Time shares became popular in the mid 1980’s as a great way to enjoy a vacation and “second home” experience, without having to actually buy a second home. But after having the time share for a while, individuals could see it wasn’t always easy to sell or get out of. Stacy Johnson of MSN Money online gives some really good advice for selling:
- Try to sell it back to the company you purchased it from.
- Sell to other time share owners.
- Use a nearby broker. They will charge a higher commission than when selling a house but they have resources you won’t.
- Sell online at sites like RedWeek, Timeshare User’s Group, My Resort Network, and TransAction Realty.
- Utilize popular selling sites like Craigslist, or even Ebay.
According to CNN Money annuities are popular insurance investment products for individuals, particularly as part of a retirement plan. The policy is made so that it pays out in incremental payments over a predetermined time period, or it can be paid out in one lump sum. Because of how they are set up, one way to sell them is by getting structured settlement quotes so you can get the money without having to wait. Integrity Funding states that this is actually very common because many people want the money to pay for college, purchase a house, or even start a small business or other costly adventure.
Getting Rid of Bonds
Bonds are basically IOU’s from companies who have a “debt security” with an investor who basically loans them money on the idea that it will be returned at some point in the long term future with some financial appreciation. When you are ready to sell your bond, you are wise to connect with a broker who can help you. You can also sell them on the open market, but unless you are a professional, it can be better to let a brokerage do it for you.
All too often selling investments isn’t as easy as buying them. Make sure to know when you buy an investment what you need to do on the other end so you are prepared when the time comes.
Scott @Youthful Investor says
An important point worth adding, about old stock certificates is to do a little research on the company even if they are defunct. A number of old stock certificates that are completely worthless as shares of a no longer existing company are actually quite collectable. They are aggressively bought and sold on places like eBay as “exonumia.”
Value and the corresponding price paid for these is due in large part to the rarity of surviving shares but is also dependent on the art, as some were incredibly beautiful in their design. Topical themes carry great weight too, like those of old railroad companies, perhaps the most commonly found defunct stock shares.