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How To Get The Most Money For Your Gold

Updated on February 16, 2016

The value of gold is climbing and more and more people are selling their gold for cash. If you’re tempted to part with your gold jewelry, you’re not alone. The price of gold has risen steadily over the last few years and today is fetching about $1200 per ounce.

There are many ways to sell your gold. Gold parties (where you can have your gold appraised and receive cash right then), jewelry stores and even online gold buyers are all looking for scrap gold. Scrap gold simply means that you will be paid only for the weight of the gold-not the price of the original piece. Scrap gold is just melted down, not re-sold as is.

The BBB suggests shopping around as a gold party or a jewelry store may not always give you the best price. They also offer these tips to help you in your search for the best deal:

  • The value of your gold is determined by the weight. The weight you come up with at home will differ from what a jeweler weighs it at, however, because jewelers use the troy ounce scale, not the US scale. A troy ounce scale will weigh it at approximately 3.1 grams higher per ounce. Dealers who use an old system called pennyweight will actually pay you less than what your gold is worth.

  • Know the karats of your gold. Gold is mixed with other metals because, alone, it is so soft. The percentage of gold determines the karats. For example, 14 karat gold is 14 parts gold to 10 parts other metals. Anything under 10 karats cannot be legally identified as gold.

  • Weigh jewelry at different karat values separately. Because its value will vary, weigh all 14k together, all 18k together, etc.

  • Know the going rate for the day. Check online or call a jewelry store to find out what rate gold is selling at; it varies day to day. Not all dealers are ethical. If they know you’re looking for a quick buck, they may be tempted to shortchange you.

  • Unique, rare or designer jewelry may be worth more sold privately than when sold for scrap, so have your jewelry appraised.

  • If you decide to use an online dealer, be sure to read the fine print on the site. Understand their terms and conditions. Find out how long reimbursement will take and how many days after they make an offer you may have to decide you want your gold back. Take pictures of your pieces first then send your gold insured.

  • Shop around. Not all dealers will offer the same price and some may be willing to give you a little bit more for choosing them. Remember to have your jewelry appraised first to see if it’s worth more as is or melted down.

  • Gold parties are more of a social venue than a realistic way to sell gold. You will most likely only get 70 to 80 percent of the scrap metal value.

  • Make sure you have an ID. Buyers are required to ask for identification from anyone selling gold. This is so that if the jewelry is stolen, it will be easier for the police to trace.

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