Four Golden Rules for Selling Your Gold Jewellery and Coins

You don’t need to be an industry professional to sell items of value, like gold jewellery or coins. The dusty set of stow away valuables which has accumulated enough space in your house to be paying rent, really ought to go if no one needs it; but you’re not sure if you know enough about how to sell gold to venture off and do it. Perhaps you’re worried you’ll be taken advantage of, or you just don’t think the memories are worth what you’ve been offered; a little help to getting it right would be nice. It’s not really that complicated if you consider these four golden rules for selling your old gold.

Gold Coins1. Know your Jewellery

That means each item. There’s no use in weighing a lump of the stuff in your hand as if it were clay. Carefully examine each and every individual item for their weight and quality. Whether the item is scratched or not, or needs a polish, seldom matters. Chances are it will be melted down for its ore. If that hasn’t helped you let go of grandma’s ring, my apologies. But remember, a heavy piece with a high karat rating will make your lump of dusty gold far more valuable.

Besides, it will be turned into something that will bring great happiness to someone’s life, probably. Many items of jewellery have what is called a ‘hallmark’ on it. Somewhere on the piece, is engraved one or more numbers which tell you the weight and grade of the item. Sometimes there is also a logo to link it to its manufacturer. Having this information will make things a little easier for you. If you don’t have a hallmark, there’s no need to panic, it doesn’t mean there’s anything wrong with your jewellery.

2. Go Buyer Hunting

Generally, settling on the first buyer you find is lazy and could lose you money. There is no good reason to feel overly loyal to the first person who appraises your rings or coins. Not only are pawn shops a great option for frugal shopping, they can be a good source for buying your gold. Visit every pawn shop Melbourne wide if you can. The more prices you get, the more selling power you will have.

Get to know the guys. Ask them questions and speak to their customers if you can. See if you can find anything on the web about them, a good review in a blog or a complaint to the Better Business Bureau. Compare their rates for each piece and see which one offers you the best deal. It won’t take long for you to separate the good businessmen from the bad and whittle down your number of likely buyers. But if you are patient and you do your homework, you’ll win.

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3. Wait for the Right Moment

Like most investments, if you want to make money off of them you have to do it when the time is right. Like other precious commodities, gold and silver fluctuate in price as their market value rises and falls. Getting this right will make a difference, especially if you have plenty of grams of gold to sell. If you stand to make good money, then there’s no need to rush it. Sell the pieces in your own time, when the price is right for you. Selling when the market is low is great for the buyer, but will do nothing for you; while selling when it is high will keep you smiling. Keep a close eye on the news; wait for the steak to sizzle, as they say.

4. You Can’t DIY if You Don’t Have the Equipment

What do jewellery and potatoes have in common? Not very much indeed. So kitchen scales are just not going to work when you weigh your jewellery. They’re not sensitive enough for such delicate material. We’re not going to slam a glistening necklace down on a chopping board and go to work on it, are we? Yes a bad workman always blames his tools. But you are not a jewellery appraiser, and those are not the tools you’d need for the job. Incidentally, if you go to a buyer’s shop and he slaps all your jewellery down on a kitchen scale as if it were a lump of fish, you should probably thank him kindly and leave.

Blogger-in-Chief here at RetirementSavvy and author of Sin City Greed, Cream City Hustle and RENDEZVOUS WITH RETIREMENT: A Guide to Getting Fiscally Fit.

16 Comments

  1. I love your tips for selling gold. I like how you said that we should know the weight and quality of each piece before taking it in. My wife and I need some extra money, so we’ll get some of our gold pieces appraised. Maybe we should sell those.

  2. I just got a bunch of old pieces of jewelry from my grandmother. I don’t want all of them so I have been considering selling the pieces that I don’t want. Waiting for the right time to sell is good for me to know. After all, I would want the most money possible.

  3. I like the suggestion of carefully examining each and every individual. I think that if you take all of the precautions that you can then you might get the best deal for what you are selling. I think that if you don’t know how much to sell it for then you might want to do some research for item you are selling.

    • Indeed. Thanks for stopping by and sharing your thoughts, my friend.

  4. I’ll admit I chuckled when I read your comparison between potatoes and jewelry. I will say it’s hard to figure out what I can sell everything for without going to a buyer and asking about it. My mom is trying to sell all of her excess jewelry because she’s going into retirement and wants to downsize a bit.

    • Understanding the value before trying to sell is key. Ultimately I believe it comes down to carats and weight. Best of luck to you and your mother.

  5. Thank you, this was super helpful!

  6. I never thought about jewelry when it comes to selling gold and stuff. In that case, I’m sure my wife would be a lot better than me because she knows her stuff pretty well. I liked the tip of getting to know people. When it comes to business, I think that’s the best way to do it, plus you get to make some new pals which is always good. Thanks for the tips!

    • You’re welcome, my friend. Thanks for stopping by.

  7. I appreciate your tips, and think the most important one is getting to know your jewelry. Researching what gold is worth and how high a carrot your gold is will help you know what a fair price for your old jewelry is. This means you will be better able to find the best buyer for the gold when you go looking. Additionally, finding out more about your jewelry will help you decide if you really want to sell it. It doesn’t do much good just collecting dust, but if it has a lot of sentimental value then it is probably worth keeping.

  8. #5 After selling, don’t buy jewelry until you’re financially independent.
    I think I’m too practical, The only jewelry I have that I could think of was a gold Seiko kinetic watch that my uncle gave to me. I tend not to buy things that don’t have a practical purpose.
    Is #3 like timing the market though? because you could say, “well you lost out on dividends and market rises because you waited to sell your gold” assuming you would’ve put into the market. Or the cost of your interest on debt if you were to pay off debt with it.
    I could’ve used this list when we sold some of my girlfriends jewelry years ago.

    • I’m not a big jewelry guy myself and … and fortunately, neither is my wife. Interesting point with respect to number three. I would agree that it is a form of market timing and if not played exactly right, there is the potential for ‘losses’ when one considers opportunity costs. I suppose a significant factor for most people that have elected to part with precious metals is their level of desperation; and I suppose that most that have elected to part with certain items are more driven by short-term objectives vice long-term goals. Thanks for adding to the conversation, my friend.

  9. I’ve found selling when the economy is down is usually good practice for highest pay outs. The hallmark on one of my rings got worn out pretty quickly, so I was glad I had paperwork so I knew how many k it was!

    • “I’ve found selling when the economy is down is usually good practice for highest pay outs.” Interesting. I would have thought that pay-outs would be lower when the economy is not doing as well … the thinking being that in a bad economy people are more desperate to sell, giving the buyers a little more leverage. Thanks for stoppin by and adding to the conversation, my friend.

  10. Don’t forget that some of your old jewelry may be more valuable to a vintage/antique shop than a gold buyer. This won’t usually be the case, but every once in a while if you’ve got a unique piece, consider that as an option.

    • Great suggestion. Thanks for stopping by, Hannah.

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