Be prepared: what will you need to know when selling gold and jewelry?

Dear Alan, I own some gold like cufflinks, an Eagle coin, gold teeth and a necklace. I plan to sell this gold if I can achieve a good price. Except for the coin, it’s just old-fashioned gold. Nothing really valuable I think so. I heard some alarming stories on TV about selling gold and the way how gold buyers can ripp me off. Alan, please prepare me for my selling procedure and tell me what to know when selling gold.
Mason from Los Angeles in California

Dear Mason, I can fully understand your fear. And it’s true what you have seen on TV. Many gold buyers try to buy gold for little money. But don’t be too scared because there are also many, many honest guys who buy gold. But generally it’s good to be alarmed. Cautious dealing is the right way. But let me explain more in detail.
reDollar appraiser, Alan Jensen

Mason asks, what to know when selling gold?

Mason: I have some old gold here. Some gold teeth, an Eagle gold coin, antique cufflinks and a necklace. In my opinion only the coin seems to be interesting. I think the rest is just scrap gold. The cufflinks are marked as “18K plus a star” and the engraving “ARGENTINA.” The necklace is marked as “14K” with no other hallmarks or engravings. I also send you a photo of the reverse and the obverse of my eagle coin. Maybe you can find out which Eagle it is. But Alan, my most important question is what to know when selling gold? Who buys my gold for a very good price?

Alan: It’s always the best to do some research. Information is power and a huge benefit for a selling conversation. Let’s speak about your selling options, before we speak about your gold. There are really many things to know when selling gold. First, you should learn that your gold is really valuable. You wrote in your email “Nothing really valuable.” I always recommend people to speak about value if they own gold. Gold is a very rare precious metal and mining companies make great efforts to get out some flakes or nuggets from ground. For your gold teeth, the necklace and the cufflinks, mining companies have to move tons of material to get out gold in that amount. But generally, I understand what you want to convey. But I want that you know, that you shouldn’t speak about your gold in that way when you offer it to a gold buyer. It makes the impression that you underestimate your gold’s value. A gold buyer could use your mindset as an opportunity to offer little money. It’s always better to overestimate the gold when you offer it to a buyer than to underestimate it.

Mason: You are more than right, Alan. I have never thought about that before.

Alan: Yes, it’s right and you can increase your amount paid if you follow some helpful hints like that. Next, you have to know that the majority of gold buyers will ask you to specify the amount you expect to get paid. That’s a well-known trick in the gold buying industry. If you ask for too much money, they can badmouth your gold and if you ask for too less money, they can buy it maybe for a bargain. You want to get paid a high price for your gold and therefore I recommend you, never answer that question. You could say, it’s your sister’s gold and you just ask around for her. Or whatever, but never ever call a certain price.

Mason: I understand, that makes sense to me. Do you have more insider information for me?

Alan: Yes, I have. We know that some gold buyers are reliable guys but we also know that you could meet unreliable dealers. The NYC department for consumer affairs found out that three out of four gold buyers are in violation of laws. You should know that it’s your right to learn more about your gold when you ask for this information. A reliable gold buyer is willing to tell you the weight (measured in gram or pennyweight) and the purity (measured in karat). Your cufflinks for example are made of 18K gold. Pure gold is made of 24K gold. 18 divided by 24 equals 0.75 what means that you own an item made of 75% of pure gold. I asked you to weigh your cufflinks and the necklace from apart and you told me that your cufflinks weigh about 6 gram. 6 gram of 18K gold shows a current value of about $174. I recommend, not selling for less than minus 10% of that amount.

Mason: I learn a lot today. I’m happy with that amount. Not bad for only two old cufflinks.

Alan: Oh yes! Remember, I told you before not to underestimate your gold. But let’s speak about your gold Eagle coin. I see that your coin is a 1/2 oz. coin what means that it contains 15.55 gram of pure gold. The current value of such a gold coin amounts about $665. Your intermediate result shows over $800 for the moment.

Mason: I like that. I can need some extra money.

Alan: Yes, but you know that we are not finished. So, let’s talk about your necklace. As you told me, it’s also marked as 18K gold. The weight you provided to me was 17.43 gram. Such a necklace can sell for about $500 today. So again you increase your subtotal. Your intermediate result shows now $1,300 and we still have left your gold teeth.

Mason: It becomes fabulous to me.

Alan: Finally, let’s speak about your gold teeth. I asked for the source of your teeth. You told me that these teeth comes from a New York dentist, and was worn from your grandpa. I asked you that question because foreign gold teeth are often made from lower quality than US gold teeth. I can only guess and say that your teeth is also made of 17K or 18K gold. But there is no way for me to find that out if I don’t have this dental gold in my laboratory. They could also be made of 10K gold. But let’s say that they are made of 17K gold and based on your indicated weight, we speak about a current value in the range of $150 and $200. I’m pretty sure that you can sell all items together for about $1,450 or $1,500.

Mason: That’s a very good price, I think so. What is if I sell this gold to your company? Can you pay this calculated amount to me?

Alan: Generally, yes! But consider that an evaluation from afar is not final. I have to check your gold in person. It can happen that you own false marked gold or your gold teeth are not made of gold. That happens almost never but as an honest buyer, I have to point out to that.

Mason: I understand what you mean. Let’s try it Alan. I start selling online, right now. Maybe you can send me a confirmation email?

Alan: I will do that for you. I thank you for your trust Mason!

Mason: I thank you too Alan.

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