In these tough economic times, we have been filtering a lot of calls from people wanting to sell their jewelry. For a couple years now, we have had our brochure “What You Need to Know About Selling Your Jewelry” posted on our website. It is available in both quick reference and download form. In the past, many people wanted to sell their jewelry because they no longer wear it, or a broken relationship; but more often we are seeing jewelry for potential sale to boost their current income. We start off our brochure with a dose of reality, but before you sell your jewelry, ask yourself “is selling Grandma’s engagement ring really worth one month’s rent”, what happens next month? Of course there is nothing wrong with selling jewelry you no longer care about, but maybe think about other options before selling a treasured family heirloom.

The following is a news story by KOMO 4 news reporter, Herb Weisbaum, which NGL was consulted on:

When selling gold, it pays to shop around
By Herb Weisbaum

Watch the Story

With gold prices nearing $900 an ounce, selling old or unwanted jewelry can seem like an attractive option, and Northwest pawn shops and jewelry stores are buying more and more gold.

“Probably 35 to 40 percent over a year ago,” said David Michael with Dacel Jewelers.

If you have gold coins you know exactly what they’re worth. But when you walk into a store with an old ring or chain and say “make me an offer,” are you going to get a good price?

We decided to find out by going undercover.

We visited three jewelry stores and five pawn shops with a gold ring and gold chain brought in by a KOMO producer, and Linda, a viewer with a pile of gold jewelry she wanted to sell. Each store had a different procedure.

At Ben’s Loans in Renton, they just took the items and put them on a scale.

Same drill at the Yuppie Pawn Shop in Kirkland.

At the Pawn Xchange in Bellevue and Super Pawn in Tukwila, they took a lot longer coming up with a price, spreading each item out and going over them in detail.

The offers for the ring and chain ranged from $50 to $120. Linda was offered anywhere from $70 to $105 for her items.

In both cases, the two highest offers came from the pawn shops, not the jewelry stores.

The Yuppie Pawn Shop in Kirkland gave us the highest price for our producer’s ring and chain, and the lowest price for Linda’s jewelry.

The lesson?

“I learned to shop around, that it’s a good idea to get out there and take your jewelry to lots of places,” said Linda.

Yuppie Pawn Shop owner Brian Lurie said he tries to give a fair price, but it might not always be the best price.

“We want your motorcycle, your rolex and we pay you more for it,” he said. “We’re not a jewelry store and we don’t love the jewelry. We just love the weight of the jewelry.”

Lurie said sellers shouldn’t come in thinking they’re going to get top-dollar.

“You’re not going to get what gold sells for and you’re not going to get what new jewelry prices are.”

A lot of the gold people bring is to sell is 14-karat gold, which is only half gold. So if you have an ounce, it’s not worth $900 — it’s worth about $450. But the buyer also has to sell it to the refiner.

“So you might see 30 to 50 percent less than the refiner actually pays the jeweler or over-the-counter buyer, simply to take into account those market fluctuations and the cost of doing business,” said Ted Irwin with the Northwest Gemological Institute.

For example, if you had an ID bracelet that weighs a little more than an once, the scrap gold value is probably about $500.

But pawn shop owner Lurie says you’re never going to get that much for it, and could instead expect about $250.

So before accepting an offer, be sure to take your gold to several pawn shops or jewelry stores to see who makes the best offer.

For More Information:

What you Should Know About Selling Your Jewelry

Appraisals are utilized for various functions -insurance, estates, dissolutions and other legal matters. They can also facilitate a resale by helping the prospective buyer make an informed decision. That’s exactly what we are seeing more of these days – appraisals for people wishing to sell their jewelry. The prospect of re-selling jewelry is challenging in this highly competitive marketplace and NGL is here to help with another “What You Need To Know” brochure. With tips for selling to both professional buyers and individuals, we discuss methods of sale, auctions – both traditional and electronic, benefits and pitfalls of each. It also provides some alternatives you may not have considered. Drop by the lab for a complimentary copy or visit for a free download.

Preliminary Reports for everyone !!
Until now, our preliminary fine jewelry reports have been available only to those in the resale trade,i.e. antique stores, pawn brokers, etc. because these reports are not for insurance purposes, but to facilitate a sale of pre-owned jewelry. Now, with the prevalence of E-marketing and those who consign, we have decided to offer this service directly to the public. Our Preliminary Fine Jewelry Report gives the prospective buyer the metal identity of the item, stone identity, estimated weights for diamonds, color, clarity etc. in a compact form with color photograph. A realistic retail value places the article in perspective for an informed decision. This an abbreviated report not for insurance, but for verification and relative value. The cost is $40 by appointment/down to $30 in quantity with 3-5 day turnaround.

CD Support Services for pre-owned jewelry now include high resolution CD burned
photographs to include in your advertising. Our detailed photos help the client visualize their upcoming purchase or archive items for future use. Add from $15 to your existing service. Can also be used to compliment your fine jewelry appraisal by putting everything on CD.

Want to Sell? Our brochure will be available soon
Our newly revised “What You Need To Know About Selling Your Fine Jewelry” gives the layperson insight into the realities of marketing fine jewelry and the various methods available to them. Information for private sale, auctions, E-trading, print media plus possible tax implications. Click on Selling Your Jewelry or call for this updated brochure.

Phone: 425.455.0985 | Fax: 425.454.3088 | Office: 10801 Main Street Suite 105 Bellevue, WA 98004
Office Hours: Monday-Thursday 8:30am - 4:00pm, Friday 8:30am - 3:30pm, Closed Saturday and Sunday

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