Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Selling Your Jewelry

(Source: Willis Garriott)

There are many reasons for deciding to sell your unwanted diamonds and fine jewelry. You may be seeking emotional release from a broken relationship, needing emergency cash, purchasing or remodeling your home, or updating your jewelry for something more fashionable.

What Is It Worth?

After you decide to sell your jewelry, the first question is: What is it worth? Quite simply, your jewelry is worth what someone else is willing to pay for it. But there is a difference between appraised value and market value. Most appraisals are not a valid indicator of the worth of your jewelry or diamonds. You may only get between 10% and 20% of the appraised value. An appraisal can be issued for different reasons. Sometimes, a high appraisal is used as a marketing tool by a retailer who wants his customer to believe he got a great deal. Insurance companies also don't mind inflated appraisals, because the premiums customers pay are based on the submitted value. If you want an accurate assessment of your diamond or jewelry's value, have it appraised by an independent appraiser who has no interest in it. When it comes to diamonds, often appraisals are not accurate as to the color and clarity. There are no guidelines throughout the industry, standards or government regulations as to the accuracy required for describing jewelry or its value.

Diamond Grading Certificates

If your diamond came with a certificate from the GIA, the Gemological Institute of America, you will be able to get a valid offer over the phone or emailed to you. There are other diamond grading labs, but GIA is consistently the most accurate. If you are selling a diamond that is probably worth more than $5000 and you have two weeks time, you might consider having your diamond certified by the GIA.

Sell Jewelry Quickly

So where do you go if you want to sell your jewelry or diamonds quickly?

Friends

You might first talk to your friends or relatives, and see if anyone is interested in purchasing your jewelry. However, it is not likely you will find a buyer this way, and you may create tension in your friendship by disputing the jewelry's value.

Ad in the Local Paper

You might also think of placing an advertisement in your local newspaper. Because of the limited number of potential buyers, it may be difficult to find a qualified purchaser willing to give you full market value.

Craigslist

Craigslist is also a great place to sell your jewelry. There are hundreds of fews on jewelry alone for local areas, you might just find the right buyer.

Pawnshops

The absolute worst place to sell jewelry is a pawnshop. They are in the money loaning business, and they buy all kinds of junk. You will be offered ten cents on the dollar if you are lucky. Pawnshops are usually located in less than desirable neighborhoods, so you may need to be concerned for your safety.

Retail Jewelry Stores

In most areas companies that purchase or take jewelry on consignment from the public are required to be licensed and regulated by the state and often local law enforcement agencies. Retail jewelry stores are a great place to sell broken jewlry. They might even take a single earring because they can chop it down and make it into something else.

However, retail jewelry stores have diamonds given to them on consignment from large diamond dealers. If they purchase your diamond, they will have to lay out their own cash, so they will offer considerably less to purchase it out right.

On Line Diamond and Fine Jewelry Buyers

If you look on the Internet, you will find a number of companies offering to buy your gold, fine jewelry, quality watches, and diamonds online. You can contact these companies by telephone or email. They can provide you with a tentative offer based on the information you provide. Once the company receives and evaluates your jewelry you are contacted with a firm offer. WARNING some of these firms will offer you a unrealistic high price to get you to send them your jewelry and they contact you with a significantly lower price.

There is always a potential for loss when sending expensive items. If you choose one of these companies, find out which carrier they use and if the item will be fully insured. The US Postal Service is probably your best choice as they are self insured and your jewelry is not insured by a third party.

Usually sellers choose an online jewelry buying company for convenience. It means you don't have to go anywhere. But often customers are disappointed when they hear how little money they will receive. By then they have already sent the item, and may figure it is not worth the trouble to pay to have it returned to them.

Questions to ask on line buyers

• How long have you been in business?

• Do you have a showroom or office that i can bring my items to?

• Are you Better Business complaint free?

• Are you licensed?

• Are you in compliance with state and federal laws and guidelines?

Auction Houses

In addition to online auction sites, there are a number of highly reputable, well-established auction houses that have auctions for fine jewelry, such as Bonhams & Butterfields, Christie's, and Sotheby's. Generally these auction houses are only interested in high value items. Bonham & Butterfields will also give you a good idea of your item's value, before you decide where to sell it. There are not auctions everyday, so you will have to wait awhile for your proceeds. In addition, as the seller you are responsible for the costs associated with selling your jewelry, such as marketing photographs and a commission, and these will reduce your profit. Bonhams & Butterfields will take lower value items to list in their auction catalogues. This does entail a considerable delay in selling your jewelry, however, because they only publish catalogues a few times a year. The advantage to being willing to wait to sell is that you may receive more money.

On Line Auctions

In addition to online gold and jewelry buying companies, there are also the Internet auction sites, such as eBay. On this site, you can post the jewelry items you have for sale, and potential buyers will respond with offers. On Internet auction sites you will encounter a lot of people looking for a bargain, and possibly even scammers and criminals. Because you are dealing with individual buyers, not a reputable company, you are at risk for loss. If you do decide to sell through one of these sites, make sure to protect yourself as much as possible by meeting your buyer in a safe public such as your bank or Starbucks.

Your Best Option

There are advantages to selling your jewelry quickly: cash in your pocket immediately and removing emotional attachments rapidly. But how do you ensure confidentiality, no scam artists, and no security risks? Your best option may be a reputable diamond and jewelry buyers with an established place of business, such as FJR Diamond and Gold. When you deal with us, you may rest assured that you are dealing with a fully licensed diamond and jewelry professional. This provides you with the ultimate security. When choosing a diamond purchaser, you may want to find out if you can walk in with your jewelry, or if your have to send it by mail. Obviously, it is more secure if you do not have to use a delivery service.

You may also wish to inquire how long the business has been operating and check with the Better Business Bureau to make sure they are no complaints against the business. At The San Francisco Diamond Exchange, we buy and sell loose diamonds, platinum and gold engagement rings, platinum and gold tennis necklaces and bracelets, diamond earrings and pendants. We have been in business for over thirty years complaint-free with the Better Business Bureau. When you sell your jewelry in person to a reputable dealer, you don't risk loss, theft, identity theft or a below market value offers.

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