Smart Ways to Sell Your Gold by Bob Frick is featured in the November 2011 issue of Kiplinger’s Personal Finance Magazine. The story addresses the central questions surrounding the cash for gold industry – What is the smart way to sell your gold; how does one find a good deal; and how does one find an honest gold buyer when selling gold? The article leads with the story of a savvy gold seller who did her own consumer research before shipping identical gold rings to ten different gold buyers. Her experience points to the lack of standardization in the “sell-your-gold” industry and the disparity between online gold buyers in terms of their payments, policies and business practices. Prices paid according to the story were between 9% and 60% of melt value. And her customer experience was also as diverse. She encountered varying degrees of difficulty when trying to have her items returned from gold buyers she declined to do business with.
Not surprisingly, GoldFellow®, the trusted gold buyer with the A+ BBB rating, contributed background information about how to sell your gold, gold karats, units of weight measurement like grams and pennyweights and best practices – and our founder/CEO Michael H. Gusky is quoted in the story, providing tips for consumers selling gold and some perspective.
There are several important takeaways from this story:
1. Estimate the value of your scrap gold by karat and weight before you sell your gold to a gold buyer. Most gold jewelry will fall under the category of “scrap gold” – that is gold jewelry which will be purchased for its fine gold content only – then melted and refined – not resold. Use an online calculator that will give a melt-value based on the purity and weight of the gold in grams or pennyweights. Gold buyers pay a percentage of this melt-value. You could also use GoldFellow®’s gold value estimator which will show you what GoldFellow® pays for all karats and quantities of gold every day.
2. Know what you are selling. Gusky warns certain heirlooms, antiques and brands such as Tiffany® and Cartier® may command a higher price from a collector instead of being sold as scrap gold. Do some research before sending heirlooms and luxury brand jewelry off to a gold buyer.
3. Do your homework. Read the company website. Check them out with the Better Business Bureau. The devil is in the details. Not all online gold buyers are alike. There is no industry standard. The consumer quoted in the story did her own consumer test and discovered internet gold buyers are all over the map – in pricing and practices. Some companies will simply mail you a check for your scrap gold and make it difficult to get your items back if you’re unhappy with your settlement. Other companies will tell you your settlement in advance over the phone but won’t give you a karat by karat price and weight accounting. Some will email the information. Some will readily ship back your items if the settlement offer is declined – others go out of their way not to return the items. GoldFellow® posts customer’s itemized settlements online for their review and approval and returns declined settlements.
4. Do not ship gold by regular mail. The smart way to sell your gold is to be sure to only ship your scrap gold jewelry to an online gold buyer using a trackable and insured method such as FedEx®. Then, track your shipment to the gold buyer. Remember, these are your valuables until you choose to accept a settlement offer. It’s best to take care to ensure your items arrive safely at their destination.