Are you sitting on a secret goldmine? With gold prices hitting all time highs, it’s a great time for selling gold jewellery that you no longer want.
Historically, the price of gold tends to rise during times of economic uncertainty and conflict. Current global concerns, including trade tensions between the US and China, have resulted in booming prices. Gold was around $1650 per ounce a year ago (September 2018), now it’s over over $2,200 Australian dollars an ounce!!!
That means old gold rings, chains and bracelets lying in a drawer could contain a lot of value.
Gold jewellery has been used as a traditional store of value in many cultures for thousands of years. It has a dual purpose: it can be worn as a beautiful accessory, as well as liquidated in times of need. Jewellery consistently accounts for over two-thirds of annual global gold demand. India is the largest consumer, accounting for 27% of demand in 2009, followed by China and the US.
In recent years the recycling of second-hand jewellery has become a multibillion-dollar industry. But many of the places offering "cash for gold" don’t offer fair value, especially for items with gems. These places also have no knowledge or interest in what they’re buying - the only thing that matters is the weight of the metal. There can be some horror stories, such as the case of an old watch being sold for scrap for a few hundred dollars. It turned out to be antique Patek Philippe and would have been worth thousands as an intact piece.
Don’t let this happen to your hoard! Always seek expert advice. Here are three tips to make the most of your treasure trove:
1. Get a proper valuation
Some of your jewellery may be worth more than you think, so have it properly appraised.. You can get a basic assessment at a local jeweller to check whether it’s real gold or not, but it may be worth going to a specialist for a full assessment. First State Auctions offer an online no obligation assessment of auction value provided you can provide some documentation or provide weights on gold jewellery items – the items will need to be inspected to prior to confirming the valuation.
Remember that the purity of gold is critical for its value when selling gold. Because gold is very soft, it has to be combined with other metals when made into jewellery - and having a larger proportion of the lower cost metal makes it cheaper. Nine carat gold will be worth far less than the same weight of 18 carat gold. It’s rare to see jewellery higher than 22 carats, though 23 carat pieces are sometimes made for Indian weddings.
2. Check if it’s branded
Branded jewellery can often be more valuable in one piece rather than melted down for its metal. Vintage jewellery collectors are keen to snap up items from historic names such as Harry Winston, Cartier and Tiffany.
For example, an 18-carat gold vintage Tiffany links bracelet weighing 32 grams would be worth around $1500 at current gold prices if it was melted down. But it will fetch well over $6,000 at auction. Likewise, 18-carat gold 1940s Cartier Paris ear clips, weighing just 11 grams - or $500 worth of gold – will fetch over $6,000.
3. Consider an auction
An auction can be the best way to get the maximum value for selling gold jewellery. To start with, you’ll get a full auction valuation, with experts able to assess and certify precious gems as well as metal. They will also professionally photograph and catalogue your items, should you decide to sell.
An experienced auctioneer with a track record of specialising in selling jewellery can also expose your jewellery to a wider audience, where you’re more likely to get specialist buyers and collectors. While commissions still apply in selling jewellery through auction, these are typically far lower than retailers’ mark-up, and you can frequently end up with more money in your pocket.
The great thing about selling jewellery and watches at First State Auctions is that the process is completely transparent. You can view your item and follow the auction online, and with thousands of people viewed your item online, it will fetch a true market value.
Have a rummage through your drawers and old jewellery boxes. You could uncover a golden opportunity!