6 Things You Need to Know when Dealing with Pawn Shops and Secondhand Jewelers.
Say you have a diamond you want to sell. Maybe you’re recently divorced or you inherit some jewelry you have no use for. Whatever your reason, you’ll find no shortage of pawn shops, dealers and secondhand jewelers willing to take it off your hands. The problem is they don’t exactly have your best interests at heart. With that in mind, we’ve compiled this list of 6 things you should keep in mind when dealing with pawn shops and secondhand jewelers (if you have to.
1. They want to buy it off you at the lowest possible price.
They aren’t exactly secretive about it. Pawn shops and secondhand jewelers make their money by buying items for less than they’re worth, and selling them for as much profit as they can get. They’ll often try and tell you the material the diamond is set in is worth more than the diamond itself. Don’t fall for it. Your diamond is almost always the most valuable part of your jewelry. If the pawn shop of secondhand jeweler’s offer sounds too low for your liking, don’t be afraid to take your stone somewhere else.
2. If you’re in a rush, you won’t get the best price.
When you’re desperate for quick cash, you aren’t going to get much of it. Pawn shops have dealt with enough people that they can smell when you’re in a hurry. If they get the sense that you aren’t willing to leave their shop without selling the diamond, they’re going to toss you the lowest offer they think they can get away with. If you’re in that much of a rush, you might even take it. Just remember that you have the power to walk away. They aren’t the only game in town, and it is always worth your time to shop around. Spending an extra day or even just a few hours can make a huge difference.
3. Secondhand jewelers and pawn shops are lousy appraisers.
Nothing against them, but pawn shops and secondhand jewelers just don’t have the tools or the expertise to give you an accurate appraisal of your diamond. Even the jewelry store you originally bought your diamond from won’t be able to give you an exact appraisal. Only a trained gemologist has the training and tools necessary to determine a diamond’s true value. The difference between a “near colorless” diamond and a “colorless” diamond can be minuscule, but that tiny difference could mean thousands of dollars in value.
4. You should learn everything you can about your diamond.
If you walk into a pawn shop completely clueless about what makes one diamond worth more or less than another, they can use your lack of knowledge against you. The most important step towards making sure you get the most for your diamond is research. The Gemological Institute of America is a great place to start. They’ll tell you about the four Cs that go into determining the value of your diamond. It’s also a good idea to have your diamond certified by the GIA. They’re the most trusted valuator in the industry and their certification will tell you and potential buyers everything you could possibly want to know about your diamond’s condition and value. Sure, it costs a little money upfront, but it could mean the difference between hundreds and thousands of dollars at a pawn shop, or even more at a jeweler. You can also check out Diamond Lighthouse’s Diamond University which is another great resource to learn how to get the true value of your diamond.
5. A diamond is worth what someone will pay for it.
A lot of pawn shops or secondhand jewelers will tell you that your diamond is only worth a specific amount. Most of the time, the number they give you is a rough, uneducated estimate designed to convince you to settle for less. Your jewelry is worth exactly the amount a buyer is willing to pay. To get the best price, it’s important to educate yourself, understand the true value of your jewelry and explore the marketplace.. Take your diamond to multiple pawn shops, jewelers and dealers. If one gives you a better price, call the others and see if they’ll beat it.
6. And remember, it’s OK to change your mind.
The sale isn’t final until the money is in your pocket and the diamond is in theirs. If at any point in the process you feel like you’re getting a raw deal, you think you could get a better price elsewhere, or even if you discover you’re just not emotionally ready to sell the diamond, it’s perfectly fine to walk away. You can always go back and try to sell it again later.
Learn more about your different options when selling your diamond jewelry.