Selling & Loan Guide For Consumers: Jewelry, Diamonds, Gold, & Watches

September 18, 2008 by Administrator 


**The United States has over 12,000 businesses that buy and sell used jewelry, watches, and diamonds. Not all are the same. When deciding on whom to entrust with your fine jewelry transaction, be selective, do research, and choose only those businesses that specialize and understand the current jewelry market.

**The best prices for fine diamond jewelry, fine gemstone jewelry, and designer gold jewelry are based on more than simple gold or gemstone weight. Ask questions of the business you are considering selling your jewelry to. Make sure they demonstrate a clear understanding of jewelry materials, jewelry brands, and jewelry craftsmanship.

**Obtaining a loan on fine jewelry is an excellent way for people to maintain anonymity and protect their credit rating. Loan operators don’t do credit checks. If the customer can’t pay back the loan it doesn’t hurt their record. The loan operator simply keeps the collateral.

**Keep in mind when selling jewelry that there are several people who are involved in the transaction, all of whom need to make a profit margin to survive and continue offering their services. These include the gold refiners if the jewelry is being melted down; the re-sellers if your jewelry is being sold again; and of course the primary business who you are dealing with.

**It is not only gold jewelry which can be used effectively for collateral or sold to provide customers with extra cash for their needs. Platinum and palladium jewelry can also be used. The prices for all precious metals are at very high levels, making now one of the best times to get a good return on the jewelry that is no longer worn.

**Not all jewelry can be resold or used as collateral. Very few businesses will accept costume jewelry, unless it a very rare item. And silver jewelry is worth only a fraction of what gold jewelry is worth, although some kinds of designer and/or antique silver jewelry can be valuable.

**For simple gold jewelry, the rule of thumb is to accept 50%-80% of gold’s current trading price, otherwise known as the “spot price”. Remember that 24K jewelry is pure gold, 18K is 75%, 14K is 58%, and 10K is 41.7%. For name brand fine jewelry and designer pieces (such as Tiffany, Cartier, Van Cleef & Arpels) you can expect to get higher prices, depending on the condition of the piece, as well as the maker, and overall desirability.

**Selling fine jewelry is a “green” act, a method of recycling that diminishes the need for increased mining of gold and gemstones. In addition, when platinum is melted down it often finds its way into new car engines, where it serves as a catalyst in devices that remove automotive pollutants.

**Beware of sending your fine gemstone jewelry through the mail to gold buyers. There is always an unnecessary risk involved by allowing your fine jewelry to leave your sight.

**When dealing with an unknown business it is always a good idea to search for complaints filed against a company with the Better Business Bureau at and other online consumer sites.

**It is estimated that 25% of customers walk away from a loan based on product collateral. Be aware of this and do not risk using an important family heirloom for a loan. If your jewelry is melted down it is lost forever.

**To ensure the best price for your gold jewelry, deal only with those buyers who set their scales in grams. Some buyers set their scales in penny weight (1.55 grams), which likely means less money for you.

**Avoid those businesses which charge an unreasonably high interest rate on their loans. In states like Texas the legal rate for short term loans can go as high as 240%! Do not allow a troubling financial situation force you into such a loan arrangement. There are always businesses to be found that will charge you a reasonable interest rate. And if you need help, seek guidance from a free consumer credit management service, such as: or

**In a world of dwindling natural resources and increasing demand from developing countries, gold jewelry continues to escalate in value. Although now at record levels, some experts predict that gold prices will increase to $1500 an ounce over the next 3 years.

**Along with precious metals, diamonds also have historically increased in value and are expected to continue to do so. According to, the price of high-quality diamonds over the past 20 years has increased 40-80%–while the Rapaport Report (the diamond industry’s price-reference bible) states that asking prices for diamonds increased by 25% in 2007-2008. Specifically, there has been a dramatic increase in the prices of large diamonds (over 4 carats) during the last several years.

**The demand for jewelry will only continue to grow. The Jewelry Information Center, a nonprofit trade association based in New York City, reports that jewelry sales have jumped from $43.9 billion to almost $70 billion over the last ten years. The average annual increase in retail jewelry and watch sales is at least a billion dollars a year.

**Industry statistics and projections (like those cited above) are why it’s great time for customers to sell unwanted jewelry and/or buy something new which is more to their liking. Many customers today are taking advantage of the opportunity to upgrade to a larger diamond, or a pre-owned luxury timepiece from brands like Rolex, Patek Philippe, and Cartier (as these types of items may continue to appreciate at a faster pace than the price of gold). Unlike buying a designer shirt or designer shoes, which have no resale value once worn out, large diamonds over 4 carats and premier brand watches maintain their worth and grow in value with inflation.


The San Diego Luxury Pawn Shop Report often profiles great jewelry brands of today and days-gone-by. Here is one of special interest: Van Cleef & Arpels: A Legendary Brand.

San Diego Pawn Shops, Gold Buyers, Gold Refineries, & More


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