As the price of gold rose in recent years, so did the companies advertising that they purchased gold, silver, diamonds and other precious metals. The trouble is that while any company can purchase these items, very few are actually qualified to evaluate theses pieces accurately and assign a fair value to them.
Figuring out which diamond buyers are actually qualified can be a tricky task if you do not know what to look for. Below are some simple guidelines and tips to follow if you find yourself in the position to sell a diamond or a piece of diamond jewelry.
How diamonds are valued
There are many variables that contribute to a diamond’s value. Think of the diamond as a used car for a moment – when you go to value the used car, you must know the make, model, year and mileage to start. The same is true for a diamond – you must know the carat weight, color, clarity and cut in order to determine the value.
RELATED: Learn About Jewelry Appraisal from a Pro
Once these characteristics are known, the value of the diamond or diamond jewelry can be obtained. However, if the business or diamond buyer you are working with is unable to accurately grade the diamond, they are unable to accurately assign a value to it.
The common result is that the consumer is greatly under paid for their diamond. The difficulty is finding a qualified buyer who can accurately grade diamonds, and know how to associate a fair value.
Where should I sell my diamonds and diamond jewelry?
The goal for everyone who is selling a diamond or a piece of diamond jewelry is to get the highest value they possibly can for their pieces. In order to do this, it’s important to work with a highly respected company who specializes in diamonds and works within the diamond market on a daily basis.
Here are a few tips to help you determine who to bring your diamond pieces to:
1. Find a company that has GIA graduates on staff.
Since a diamond’s value is directly related to its specific characteristics, it is critical to work with someone who can accurately grade the diamond.
When it comes to diamond grading, the experts will have a degree from the Gemological Institute of America, or GIA. The grading scales used in the industry today (color, clarity, cut grade) were created by GIA. Therefore GIA graduates are typically the most educated on how to properly grade a diamond.
2 Avoid cash for gold stores and fast cash promotions.
Locations that buy gold as their primary business often advertise that they buy diamonds as well. The difficulty is that these locations are really only interested in the gold.
There are two things that are common with the cash for gold businesses:
• They often offer only a minimal amount for the diamonds.
• They do not know how to properly grade them.
Gold is a fairly easy calculation based on the market price – diamonds are much more complex.
RELATED: Angie’s List Guide to Jewelry
3. Be wise about your research.
Stick with reputable review sites and do your research. Trust sites like the Jewelers Vigilance Committee and review sites that allow for customer reviews directly on their sites, such as Angie’s List.
“Independent” ranking sites about Top Diamond Buyers are usually not what they claim to be. Work with a company who has earned their reputation rather than one that has purchased it through clever Internet marketing.
4. Don’t send to a company that promises you a high value or wants to use your PayPal account.
Unfortunately with fake review sites also come a handful of other Internet scams. Here are some useful tips:
• If you are trying to sell a diamond piece locally on a platform that allows you to post something for sale in your local town, do not send your diamond piece to anyone other than a company, regardless of how many emails you get from PayPal saying funds have been deposited into your account.
• Choose a company that is easily accessible by phone, has a brick and mortar facility and that you feel comfortable with.
• Stay away from companies that send high values via email quotes.
• Avoid companies that advertise fast cash.
Family owned businesses tend to have deep roots within their local community, and truly have the interest of the consumer in mind.