How to grade banknotes? UNC AU EF VF

Updated: January 1, 2018 / Home » Investment

Let say you found couple of old banknotes and coins when you cleaning your grandparents old things. How you know the old banknotes are valuable and what is the banknotes grading?

First Prefix and Replacement Prefix

The first prefix of a note normally starts with AA, then followed by AB, AC,…,BA,BB,BC,…while the replacement notes are generally starts with ZA, ZB etc. Those notes are priced higher than other prefix.

Normally bank notes are printed in a big sheet and in high volume. Sometimes there are some errors in the printed notes and the notes are replaced with a replacement notes. In this way, there is no need to reprint back the whole sheet of notes again, just print the replacement notes to replace those errors notes. Normally, replacement notes are priced at a much higher price than first prefix notes.

Banknotes RM1

Most Expensive RM1 Malaysian Banknotes

Out of all the new series of RM1 Malaysian banknotes, this 3rd Series of RM1 banknote signed by Tan Sri Dato’ Seri Ali Abul Hassan Bin Sulaiman is the most expensive RM1 at the current market. It will continue to be one of the most expensive RM1 and continue to be searching by collectors.

This RM is special because all the 3rd Series of RM1 bears with Tan Sri Dato’ Sri Dr. Zeti Akhtar Aziz signature except the Prefix CR that comes with Tan Sri Dato’ Seri Ali Abul Hassan Bin Sulaiman signature. According to KS Numismatic Collection Centre guide book, a UNC RM1 CR note is priced at RM5,500.


A perfectly preserved note and never mishandled or used before. Paper is clean and firm, without discoloration. The corners of the notes are sharp and square, without any folding, toned, bending or evidence of rounding. An uncirculated notes will have its original, natural sheen.


A virtually perfect note with some minor handling. May show very slight evidence of light folding on the surface of the banknotes. An AU notes cannot have a hard fold that can damage the surface of the note. AU notes still have its original, natural sheen without any damage on the corner of the notes.


A virtually perfect note with light handling. May have not more than three (3) light folds or one (1) strong creased. Notes are still clean and preserved with its original, natural sheen. May also have a slight rounding corner.


A beautiful notes but with more evidence of handling and wear. May have several folds on the notes. Notes might also have minimal dirt or possible colour smudging. Corners also show wear.


A note which shows considerable circulation, with many folds, creases, wrinkles and dirty. Colour smudging on the notes. Corners of the note shows wear.

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4 comments on “How to grade banknotes? UNC AU EF VF

  1. chew eng leong 28-11-2018 [ Reply ]

    我有写着1976-1989 一块钱的铜钱 值钱吗

  2. Vivian Tan 24-06-2018 [ Reply ]

    Hi, Do you have branch in JB or Singapore?

  3. Tracy Lim 23-06-2018 [ Reply ]


  4. Lee Hee Sian 12-04-2018 [ Reply ]


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