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Five Ways to Invest in Precious Metals with Minimal Upfront Cost

Updated on September 12, 2014

What if I told you there's a way to get gold, silver, etc for cheap and sometimes free? Would you believe me? You should because it's true! Many people invest in precious metals to diversify their investment, but these investors typically run into extra costs and pay more than melt value. Although a future increase in values makes this extra cost negligible, you should strive to cut costs where you can. Below I'll cover five ways to cut the costs.

1. Buy scrap lots on eBay. Oftentimes you can find scrap metal and jewelry lots on eBay for melt value or close to it. Many of these lots include fixable or completely wearable jewelry. You can sell these at a higher price and reinvest the profit if you choose. Sometimes you can make enough profit off of the good jewelry to pay for the entire lot. I had such an experience when I bought en estate lot on eBay. I got a coin in the lot that was valued at what I paid for the entire lot of perfectly good jewelry. That basically makes selling the jewelry almost pure profit.

2. Get free electronics advertised on Craigslist. People sometimes just want to get something out of their hair without having to bother with taking it somewhere. This stuff is typically older electronics. If the item still works, you'll have to decide if you want to scrap it out. Sometimes you're better off selling it, other times you'll get a lot of metals by scrapping. I typically find both large and small electronics. There are lots of YouTube videos that show you how to get the metals out. Satellite dishes have a lot of gold plating, so be in the lookout for those.

3. Estate sales often sell nice sterling and gold jewelry. It kind of depends where you live and how the estate is put on. Some companies run a heavy overhead and you will probably pay a little more. However, some people have family members hold the sale and you may get some good deals. Try to buy in bulk. You'll get more at once and people will be more inclined to accept offers just to get rid of it. Some sales also discount remaining goods at certain points in the day. The main company in Tucson takes 25% off the price at noon, then 50% after 1PM. That's when I typically swoop in and snag some nice stuff. Yeah, you run the risk of missing out on jewelry sometimes, but it's money saved for the next good deal.

4. Closely related to estate sales would be yard sales. Often times people don't know what they have! If there is no price tag and it's later in the day, you can frequently through out a price and maybe get your offer accepted. I walked up with a vintage silver-plated dish and a sterling ring, offered a dollar, and walked out with the goods. The same principle applies to bulk at yard sales. If they're selling it at a yard sale, they're probably not that attached to it.

5. Simply watch prices, buy low and sell high. That's the most basic strategy you can use, and it's pretty simple. Also research the best places to buy from to save some money. Reinvest profits and continue this strategy to build your investment up.


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    • Aubrey Durkin profile image

      Aubrey Durkin 3 years ago from Tucson, Arizona

      Right?? I love it

    • WritingInRichmond profile image

      WritingInRichmond 3 years ago

      Good points. I agree, if you know what you are looking for, eBay can have some incredible finds ... so can yard sales.