Wednesday, July 14, 2010
Tip #265 - Sell Gold. Gold has been at an historic all-time high lately. I am not promoting gold as an investment vehicle or not. I'll leave that to the investing professionals to advise. What I am suggesting is that you look through your jewelry boxes and find those old, gold chains that have been broken for years. Or those pairs of earrings that are missing one half the set. Or those outdated charms that have not been around your neck since 1982. Gather up all of your gold scraps and bring them over to a local gold or coin dealer and find out what they will pay you for your stash. If there is more than one place in town, then shop around.
But before you go, learn a thing or two about gold. First find out what the current rate is on gold. There are probably many sites that will tell you the current price on gold. One is called goldprice which gives you the price of gold in ounces. Or you can change the measurement to grams, which is a more measurable weight for small quantities. Currently, it says that gold is about $1200 per ounce or $38 per gram. But remember that is PURE gold - 24 Karat gold. If you have 14K gold, then it is not worth as much. To find out what 14K gold is, take 14 divided by 24 and then multiply that number by the number of grams it weighs. Then multiply that result by $38 (or whatever the current value is). That should give you a rough estimate of its worth. You can do the same for 10K or 18K.
The next thing you should do is check Ebay. If you have a bunch of 14 karat gold necklaces that altogether weigh 3.5 grams, then look up "scrap 3.5 grams gold" and you should get an idea of what they are selling for. When I did the calculation 14/24 * 3.5 * 38, I came up with about $77. Sure enough, the range this amount of gold sold on eBay was between $70 and $76. I wouldn't expect to get quite so much at the gold and coin store because they need to make a profit, too.
Even though I am a seller on eBay, I prefer not to sell gold on there. If I can find a local source for selling it that's hassle free and gives me a decent amount of money, then I prefer that. With the fees on eBay and the possibility of loss or buyer dishonesty, I would rather earn a few less dollars and not have any hassle. I'd be happy getting $60 for that amount at the gold store.
One note of caution before selling gold. Remember that what I am talking about above is scrap value. This gold is being sold for its melt down value. Gold will have more worth if it is an historic piece, a name brand, or it is intricately designed. You do NOT want to sell a piece like this for scrap value as it could be valued for much more. An example would be an old piece, one with a Tiffany name or one that has a lot of workmanship in it.
Lastly, make sure the item is free of stones before you sell or have the jeweler give them back to you.
Once you have determined that you are just selling a back of an earring, a broken chain, and a few old charms that only have scrap value, figure out its worth, compare what you found out to what they are selling on eBay, and then bring it into your local gold, coin, or jewelry dealer. If you are comfortable with the price he offers you, sell it, and put your newfound cash into your savings account. It will do better there than sitting in your jewelry box.
In Real Life (IRL) - My mother-in-law came for a visit a couple of months ago, and she brought with her some gold coins that she had stashed away in the vault. She decided that she would rather have the money then have them sit in the bank collecting dust. And since gold was at an all-time high, she wanted to sell. Because the coins were a specific type with a name, we were able to just look its worth up on eBay rather than weigh it. We found that the going rate on eBay for this particular coin was $300. The next morning my husband and his mother went over to the coin and jewelry dealer to ask him what he'd pay them. The answer? $250. We were quite happy with that price. On eBay, if we could get the $300, we'd be paying over $30 in fees plus the cost of insurance to ship, the risk of loss or the buyer being unhappy, not to mention the time it would take to take photos, write up a listing, and package it. $250 in cash was much more appealing. So she sold her coins and was happy.
Then I decided I wanted to get in on the fun. I raided my jewelry box which held a broken chain, an old charm from my sweet sixteen that spelled out "luv" and a few earrings that were missing their mates. They were a mix of 14K and 10K. We weighed it, figured out the approximate price it was worth and then brought it over to the store. We were happy with the $30 I received. I then did a second look-through and found a heavy earring that I missed the first time around along with a couple of other pieces. This time I receive $60.
For the fun of it, my husband also brought over two gold pins that I once found at an estate sale for $3 each. They are beautiful gold lilies with a pearl in the middle. The jeweler offered him over $400 for the pair! But I didn't want to sell these for scrap gold. They were too pretty, and I really didn't know much about them. So they were put back in a safe place. But it was fun to find out that I made a good purchase a few years ago. I was so excited with our gold sales that we told my parents who gave us some old cufflinks that they had and a broken pair of earrings to sell.
Remember not to get caught up in the excitement of gold because it's at its height now, but consider carefully if you you have some junk gold laying around that now might be the right opportunity for you to sell it.