Selling Jewelry or Precious Metal


For much of history, precious metals such as gold and silver have captivated people around the world, and the same is true of gems such as diamonds, sapphires, rubies, emeralds, and more. Such jewelry and metals were often exclusive to nobility, aristocrats, and royalty in many societies around the world, though over time, ordinary families started to own them, too. Many families have passed down family heirlooms for generations that include diamonds, gold, and silver, and many such items are quite valuable. Many terms and expressions today reflect the universal interest in gems and jewelry, such as “the gold standard” or “we’re golden” or “silver-tongued.”

On a more literal level, someone who owns old gold or silver items may find buyers online or in person, and they can show their expensive jewelry or diamonds to experts who can appraise their value. Diamond buyers may have in-house experts who will look over the gems to find and study the flaws, and to sell diamonds is to make a fair deal based on the gem’s quality. Merely being a diamond does not guarantee a high price; when you sell diamonds, be ready for a lower price on chipped or flawed pieces. Selling jewelry is all about the item’s rarity, condition, and craftsmanship.

Gold and Silver

When you sell jewelry, you might not only sell diamonds, but also sell gold or silver plated goods as well. What might they be? Many families own wrist watches, pocket watches, or plates or lighters coated with silver or gold. Many men pass down watches to their sons as heirlooms, much the way mothers pass down diamonds and jewelry to their daughters. These watches may be greatly valuable, as may be silver tea sets, silver coated lighters, or even silver or gold trophies or silver photo frames.

As with gems, appraisal is needed before a sale can be made. Experts will look over gold and silver items in person and evaluate them based on several factors, such as their age and their rarity. Higher rarity may mean a higher price in many cases. Not only that, but the purity of the gold or silver may vary, and of course higher purity means a higher value. No gold or silver items are 100% precious metals, since they are too soft to make items out of. Quality silver items are made of silver sterling, an alloy that involves silver plus other metals for endurance. Relatively pure metal in good condition despite its age may fetch a fine price. And finally, the expert will evaluate the item’s craftsmanship, as well-made items may earn a high price and shoddy or crudely made items may have lower values. An expert will know the difference.


Someone who owns jewelry or standalone gems will also need an appraisal before selling those jewelry pieces. This may mean finding a reputable jeweler and taking the gems there in person, and a person may look up reputable jewelers online if they do not already know a place. They may even bring a gem to the same store where they bought it. There, expert jewelers will use microscopes to examine the gems in fine detail. Gems may suffer imperfections such as scratches or blemishes on the surface, or they may have discolorations or cloudy material on the inside, or even inclusions. There is an entire rating system for this, ranging from flawless (very rare), to slightly includes (SI), to included (I1, I2, and I3). Gems with many inclusions may have a lower value than those with fewer inclusions. Most often, a person looking to sell diamonds may have diamonds with a rating somewhere in the middle.

Make the Sale

A person may sell their diamonds to a jewelry store, or they may find a private buyer in person or online. Many auction sites can be found where a person may sell jewelry or gold or silver items, or the owner may take their goods to a trade show or antiques road show to show off their goods to interested buyers. Selling an item means not only determining and agreeing upon a price, but also safe packaging, such as padding and waterproof boxes that won’t allow leaks. Padding helps prevent items inside from breaking or getting scratched during delivery.

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