Generic doesn’t always mean unimportant or worthless. It just means that the note is not as special as it could be. For example, we get called about lots of $500 bills. When you call us we are going to ask the following questions:
What years is it from?:
1928 – Least Generic
1934 – Fairly Generic unless the note has a light green seal
1934A – Most Generic
What is the serial number?:
If the number is under 100, example B00000074A – then that is special
If the number ends with a star symbol – then that is special
If the serial number doesn’t fit one of the above categories then the note is generic
Which district is the note from?
Dallas and Minneapolis notes generally command small premiums. New York and Chicago notes are always the most common.
Of course 96% of the time most people have a “generic” $500 or $1000 bill. The value of generic notes is purely based on their condition. The price range for a generic $500 bill is $600 to about $2,000 based on condition. So when we say that you have a generic $500 bill, don’t assume that it isn’t valuable. It could still be very valuable and collectible.