Top 8 Ways to Get Cash for Gold by Selling Unwanted Jewelry
Updated on: by Amy Kennedy
Some women end up with a huge collection of jewelry with more pieces than they could ever wear in a year.
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If that sounds like you and you think it’s time to downsize, then this is the article for you.
Or, perhaps you inherited your grandmother’s jewelry collection and, although its pieces are lovely, they aren’t quite your style.
Instead of hanging onto jewelry you’ll never wear, you might want to consider selling it.
Rather than Googling “selling silver jewelry near me” or “where can I sell my gold jewelry,” read through this post to give you some actionable tips for getting the best prices for your stuff and avoiding the many scams on the web.
Realistically, the industry of buying gold and silver can be a scammed-filled one, and I don’t want you to end up with pennies when you could’ve received hundreds or thousands for your pieces.
What Kind of Jewelry Can I Sell?
If you (or someone else) spent decent money on your jewelry, then there’s a good chance that you can sell it for a decent price, given that you’ve taken very good care of your collection.
Most jewelry pieces can find a new home somewhere else with someone willing to pay good money for it if they’re made from real gold or silver.
Here are a few of the types of jewelry (and other silver or gold items) that you can typically turn in for cash:
- Necklaces or bracelets made from real gold
- Wedding bands
- Engagement rings
- Class rings
- Mother’s rings
- Diamond earrings
- Real diamonds removed from their settings
- Silverware made from real silver
- Silver coins
- Gold bars
- Silver trays
- Scrap metal
How Can I Get the Best Prices?
Before you start selling away, you need to make sure you’re doing your collection justice.
That means getting the very best prices (i.e. what your pieces deserve to sell for!) for your jewelry pieces and other silver and gold items.
Here are some helpful tips that will assist you in getting top dollar for your stuff:
Get an Appraisal
First, you should always get an appraisal from a trusted source.
If there’s a jewelry store in town that you tend to frequent, that could be your go-to place for an appraisal.
If they work with you often and know you’re a good customer, they’ll likely be very willing to give you the most accurate appraisal possible.
Many jewelers will give you an appraisal for free, but some will charge for it. It usually depends on how in-depth they go with valuing your jewelry.
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Some pieces with several diamonds, for example, could take a few hours for an accurate appraisal, so that process could cost you some money.
Still, for pieces that can sell for high prices, it may be worth it for you to spend as much as $200 to get the most accurate appraisal possible, so you know how much your jewelry is worth and don’t get duped when selling it.
Weigh Your Gold and Learn About Melt Value
Understanding the melt value of gold jewelry can really come in handy too.
When you have real gold jewelry, you actually have jewelry that’s part gold and part some other mixed-in metals.
That’s because real gold in its purest form isn’t strong enough to turn into jewelry.
It needs some other metals for weight and strength.
Silver is similar. Sometimes, silver jewelry includes some other mixed-in metals in addition to silver.
The melt value refers to the value of the actual gold or silver in your jewelry.
It’s called this because if the jewelry ends up getting melted down, the buyer can recover most of that gold or silver and value it accordingly to resell.
This calculator can help you estimate the melt value of your gold or silver based on its weight and karats.
If your jewelry doesn’t have the weight already printed on it (sometimes real gold jewelry will), then you can use a kitchen scale to get an accurate measurement before using the calculator.
Make sure the scale will read your jewelry in grams.
The calculator will give you a price based on the weight and type of jewelry you have, so you’ll at least know what the melt value of it is worth.
Find Out Today’s Prices
Gold prices change constantly, so what you value your jewelry at a month ago may not be the same as it is today.
When you’re negotiating with a buyer, you want to be prepared.
That means that you should know what the gold prices are on that specific date, so you know you aren’t getting swindled.
If you come prepared with this information, your buyer will also see that you’re serious and you’re not someone they can try to scam with a lowball offer!
Check out Apmex, which not only provides some helpful information for people valuing gold, but it also has live prices for gold, silver, palladium, and platinum, just in case you also want to value other types of jewelry.
The trend charts of each type of metal can also help you see how the prices have changed over the past several months and may help you predict when the best time to sell might be.
Compare Prices and Experiences
Finally, you should treat your jewelry sales like a business.
You wouldn’t blindly take the first offer you were given if you were stocking up on inventory for a t-shirt business.
You also shouldn’t take the first offer you’re given for your jewelry.
Plain and simple, some people want bigger returns on their investments and, therefore, won’t offer you as much as someone else will for the same pieces.
Shop around for the best prices of buyers willing to purchase your jewelry!
I suggest taking your jewelry to at least five different buyers (or obtaining quotes from reputable online jewelry dealers) and narrowing the choice down to two.
Compare their prices, how you felt dealing with them, and any terms that might affect the sale.
Don’t let money blind you here.
Sometimes, a slightly lower price may be worth it if the dealer is super easy to work with and made you feel like they appreciated your business.
What’s the Best Place to Sell Old Gold Jewelry?
Now you know what to do before you sell your jewelry, so let’s talk about some of the best places to try to sell the collection, both locally and online.
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Original Jewelry Store of Purchase
First, you may want to try selling back your jewelry to the store at which you purchased it.
In some cases, if you’re pieces are very well-kept and still hold a lot of value, the jewelry store might be on board with buying it back for a good price.
You should bring your receipt with you, as well as any documentation you have that proves cleaning, adjustments, and anything else that might have been done to it to alter it or keep it in pristine condition.
This method should work well with places that you’ve built a rapport with, like shops that you’re a repeat customer with.
The jewelry store may only offer you store credit, though, so always ask about this first before they begin appraising your pieces.
If your jeweler won’t take the piece back, then you can still try other jewelers in your area.
It’s possible that one might love your jewelry enough to make you a wonderful offer.
Some jewelers only sell new jewelry, whereas others will have buyers they work with to buy used pieces or even a special area of the shop that resells used jewelry.
So, even though the jewelry store you bought it at doesn’t work with used jewelry, that doesn’t mean you won’t find one that does.
Pawn shops get a bad reputation for offering lowball prices on items you want to sell.
That’s not always the case.
It really depends on what you’re selling, and real gold and silver jewelry remains some of the most desirable products for pawn shops.
That’s because they can typically sell the pieces for high returns and, in most cases, they can sell them relatively fast.
So, they may not mind paying close to what the jewelry is worth if they know they can turn around and sell them quickly to someone else.
For pieces that aren’t quite jewelry store worthy, you might still be able to get decent earnings from them by selling them to thrift shops.
Thrift shops are all about finding vintage stuff for decent prices, so I wouldn’t expect a lot from selling jewelry here.
But, maybe you have some pieces leftover that you know you won’t get top dollar for, but still want to make a little money from them.
In that case, the thrift shop might be your best option.
There are also several online thrift stores, like ThredUp and TrueFacet, that allow you to consign your old jewelry for some cash.
Although Craigslist can be riddled with scam artists (and, consequently, has suffered a bad reputation for it), it can also be a great place to sell your old jewelry if you’re smart about it.
The good thing about Craigslist is, although you use the website to find potential buyers, you don’t actually sell over the internet.
You never have to let your jewelry leave your hands until you’ve met with a buyer and receive payment (it’s a good idea to accept only cash, not checks!).
Be sure to communicate to buyers via the anonymous messaging system.
You can then set up a meeting place and time in a public area for safety.
Some neighborhoods even have a dedicated safe place at the sheriff’s office or police office for meeting people online.
Take advantage of it if your town has one!
Read More: 24 Websites Like Craigslist: (Most Let You Sell for Free!)
eBay is one of my favorite places for selling things online because you have total control over how you want to create listings.
Jewelry can sell for really good prices here, and you can even set a reserve price.
This will stop people from being able to buy your jewelry with very low bids because your jewelry won’t sell unless it’s hit the reserve price.
You can also create Buy It Now/fixed price listings to ensure that your items don’t sell for any lower than they’re worth.
Thanks to eBay’s feedback system, you’ll also be able to weed out any potential buyers who have bad ratings or no ratings to avoid non-payment and other scams.
And, you never have to ship your item until the buyer’s payment has cleared.
Selling through eBay can give you the most control over your sales.
To learn how to have success on eBay, check out our step-by-step eBay guide for sellers.
US Gold Buyers
US Gold Buyers is a BBB accredited business with an A+ rating.
In an industry where scammers are all over the place, this is one gold buying website that we can back.
The website details what you can expect for payment depending on the type of jewelry you have.
Transparency = trust!
The company has some on-site locations you can use if you live by one, but you can also send your jewelry in by mail and expect a payout in about 24 hours after the company receives your pieces.
You can even sell scrap gold and gold dental pieces here!
Call the company to receive your quote based on the type of jewelry, karats, and weight, and you can ship overnight for free.
Worthy is a NYC-based company that also has an A+ BBB rating.
The company lets you sell watches, engagement rings, diamonds, and other jewelry pieces for cash.
You can get a quote from Worthy by calling the number and describing your pieces.
Worthy will check your details against current prices and give you an estimate. It’ll also send you free shipping materials to send your package in.
The company will analyze your jewelry and set it up for auction on the site.
You can watch the whole auction unfold!
You’re allowed to set a reserve price if you’d like. Once that price has been met, you’ll get paid quickly.
You also have the option to have your jewelry sent back if the process doesn’t yield the money you were hoping for.
Conclusion: Get Cash for Gold!
Getting cash for your gold and silver jewelry isn’t as tough as you might think if you know where to look and what to look for!
I hope this post pointed you in the right direction so that you can start seeing that money roll in.
Where have you sold jewelry before?
Do you have any other suggestions and tips?
Let us know in a comment!
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February 14, 2019 at 4:54 pm
I appreciate your tips for selling gold at the best price, and I really appreciate your suggestions for finding a reputable seller. Stores that have physical locations are generally much more stable, I agree, and I’ll definitely look at those. I have a lot of old jewelry that I’m considering selling, and I’ll be sure to take your advice and check the BBB, as well, for high rated businesses.
February 24, 2019 at 6:27 pm
I’ve taken good care of my collection so I think I can sell my gold for cash since I can’t use their styles for my outfits. Since they’re made of pure gold, I think someone will buy them. I’ll be sure to go local to get fair prices so that I can put the cash to good use.
March 15, 2019 at 5:40 pm
This some really good information about gold jewelry. It is good to know that you should try to know what the worth of the gold is. Also, it might be smart to understand what the rating of the gold is as well.
March 28, 2019 at 9:13 am
My husband and I found some old gold jewelry neither of us wear anymore, and we’re thinking of selling it. Your article had some great tips for selling gold like this, and I liked how you said to get an appraisal, and to be aware that items with inset diamonds could take longer and require more money to appraise. Thanks; we’ll keep this in mind when selling gold.
April 12, 2019 at 2:16 am
I like how you mention that you can take your collection of jewelry to a pawn shop to get them appraised when you’ve taken good care of the said collection. Making sure that all the jewelry you have is well-maintained would potentially fetch a higher price when brought to a pawnshop to check their market value. I know my wife has jewelry that she doesn’t wear anymore, and I could ask her if it’s okay to sell off some of the pieces she doesn’t wear anymore so we can get some extra cash for emergencies.
April 12, 2019 at 8:29 pm
That’s good to know that a lot of jewelers will give you an appraisal for free but that some do charge a fee. This is helpful since I have some old jewelry I never wear and want to sell so we can use that money on our vacation this summer. I’ll have to find a place I can get it all appraised for free and then find a separate place to sell it to make sure I can get an accurate price for it all.
April 18, 2019 at 3:35 pm
That’s good to know that you should go to a jewelry store you trust to get an accurate appraisal of your gold before you sell it. This is helpful since I have some gold pieces from my great grandma that I know I’ll never wear and I want to sell for someone else to use. I’ll have to find a place nearby I can get an appraisal and then find a place that has a good reputation to sell it to.
May 2, 2019 at 7:11 am
My sister wants to downsize her gold jewelry collection by selling them. I think she has some necklaces that she doesn’t want anymore, so she’s thinking of selling them to a good shop. Thanks for reminding me that she should try to get the best prices for her collection so I’ll tell her to do her research before heading to a shop of her choice.
May 31, 2019 at 12:22 am
I like that you mention how you can sell gold and silver jewelry to pawn shops and it often is done relatively quickly. If you’re planning on doing this, it would probably be a good idea to research local pawn shops online. This could give you the opportunity to read reviews and check out their website to learn about what they have to offer and if they’re reliable.
June 23, 2019 at 8:55 pm
My mom needs cash to buy a new washing machine because it broke down last night, so, she is planning to sell some of her jewelry. It was mentioned here that some of the jewelry that she can sell are rings, bracelets, and necklaces made of real gold. Moreover, it’s recommended to go to trusted businesses when planning to sell gold jewelry.