Antique beer steins are sought after by many breweriana collectors, but the value of an old stein depends upon variables such as age, condition and the general beauty or rarity of the piece. The most valuable steins are those that were hand-crafted in Germany before 1900.
A stein with blotches or cracks in the glaze or enamel is less valuable than one free of flaws. Damages to a tankard's body, such as chips and cracks, also affect its price. A stein with its original lid is more valuable than one with a replacement lid. Steins with intricate pewter lids are particularly sought after. Damaged mountings, such as broken hinges, tears, dents and missing thumblifts, also affect the value of a piece.
As of 2015, SteinCenter.com has steins available at prices ranging from $20 for a mug manufactured in 1987 to $2500 for a hand-painted and etched stein from 1897. There are many online resources for the pricing and classification of steins, such as BeerStein.net and MySteinCollection.com.