Jewelry Appraisal: Why You Should Evaluate Your Pieces

If you are the proud owner of a bedazzling collection of jewelry, or even one piece that has a certain value, but don’t know what it is, you should consider getting your jewelry appraised. Is that metal silver, white gold, or better yet platinum? What about that gemstone? Is it a genuine diamond or a perfect alternative like moissanite?

In addition, evaluating your jewelry pieces allows you to document the value and key details of your piece. No matter the circumstances, whether you have inherited a family heirloom or are willing to buy an art-deco piece from your local jeweler… In such cases, a good jewelry appraisal makes the purchasing, or selling process easier, without doubts about the monetary value. Read the full article to learn the ins and outs of jewelry appraisal and why you should consider evaluating your pieces.

Why is jewelry appraisal important? 

Buying or selling jewelry that is not appraised is like buying a pre-owned car without a CARFAX certificate. From that moment, you’re on your own. Indeed, after cars and homes, jewelry is one of the US and European citizens’ biggest purchases. As aforementioned, there are several reasons that make jewelry appraisal important. Included are…

Learn your jewelry’s monetary value

Let us suppose for a moment that you have inherited your grandma’s jewelry collection. What would you do with it? Sure, the correct thing to do is to honor those pieces of jewelry as a family heirloom they are. Keep them safe, secure, and clean. Wear them with appreciation. Look after the jewelry pieces for the next generation. If that is your main intention, a jewelry appraisal is not much needed. Although it can help answer some questions and make you clearly know the value you have inherited. 

And if by chance you no longer need one of the pieces, or they are so conventional that cannot be worn in modern times, you can consider making a jewelry appraisal from an authorized and reputable name in the industry. This will make the selling process easier and you will know how much your piece is worth. That’s a no-brainer!

Easily list your jewelry on reputable online auctions 

Ever heard of Christie’s, Sotheby’s, or Live Auctioneers? These are some of the sites that replicate eBay, but for pieces that are sold for ridiculous prices. There you can list for auction anything from fine art, decorative objects, luxury watches, and of course, jewelry. Anything that can draw the attention of bidders will be listed up for auction, whether that be online or offline. It is a good idea to have your jewelry appraised, therefore, you can have a decent starting price. Its rareness, condition, and demand – will eventually indicate the sold price. If selling your jewelry is your intent, you can find other, smaller brokers of fine jewelry. They will provide a higher starting price for your piece, but a smaller audience can be a reason for a slower selling process. 

And not to forget about eBay. Proper documentation of your jewelry will increase its price significantly, and ensure interested buyers of your jewelry’s originality. 

Check for any damages along the process 

With the passing of time, jewelry can deteriorate although all you did was wear them with appreciation. Common jewelry issues include scratches, a loose gem, a broken setting, tarnishing in silver pieces, weakened bond of metal jewelry, abrasive, dirt or dust is built-up, a broken clasp, etc. Porous gems like pearls are the most fragile pieces. Their natural construct can be easily compromised and lead to bleaching, loss of luster, drying out, discolor, or development of tiny cracks. (Since you’re here, check out our curated selection of jewelry organizer types for all your jewelry needs.)

Out of all of these jewelry damages and issues, the majority of them can be fixed. Repolishing, reinforcing, cleaning, will make your metal pieces or precious gems look just as new. A jewelry appraisal can find these damages and provide counseling as to whether you should repair the damages, or leave the piece intact. Not servicing vintage or antique jewelry for example, can help reach higher prices in jewelry auctions. 

Confirm jewelry authenticity and ownership 

Talking about jewelry auctions. You will find it difficult to even participate, let alone sell your piece, if it is not accompanied by a certificate of ownership and most importantly, authenticity. For most family heirlooms, a certificate of jewelry ownership can be found on the lines of the will. If it is not possible to find it, a jewelry appraisal can help you or at least provide professional counseling. 

Proper documentation will ease the selling process in every online or offline auction you decide to list your jewelry pieces, should you want to. And that also helps with the insurance. 

Be eligible for jewelry insurance

Let us suppose again that the grandma’s brooch you have been treasuring for some time on your jewelry box got appraised and has enough value to consider insuring it. The “wow” face expression hits jewelry appraisers every day. And you don’t have to go to the local pawn shop anymore. A jewelry appraiser is a professional of the field, and their position requires a correct valuation of the piece.  

After receiving an appraisal of your jewelry, you can now reach out to a jewelry insurance company. It is important to have your jewelry appraised before, so in case of any unwanted occurrences, you have the specific details of your jewelry documented. Although your precious piece will be lost, you will at least receive full compensation of its value. Feel free to get your jewelry appraised wherever you can find an authorized jewelry appraiser. 

And if you’re asking if a jewelry appraisal is needed to get jewelry insurance, the answer is yes. Most jewelry insurance companies consider a jewelry appraisal document as essential when it comes to providing the owner with an insurance quote for a jewelry policy. If they don’t require a jewelry appraisal document, keep in mind that you will be left exposed to inconvenient insurance quotes if it happens to make a claim. 

What should a jewelry appraisal include?

Your jewelry appraisal process must be documented. This document includes all the details that are of utmost importance when it comes to proving an accurate value. If you have never encountered a jewelry appraisal document before, notice that they include these important details: Category, Type, Style, Size

Total Weight, Metal Type and Metal Grade.

If your jewelry piece includes precious gemstones, like diamonds, rubies, emeralds, or sapphires, other details will be included within the appraisal document. Including here: Carats, Source, Shape, Color, Clarity, Cut, Setting, Polish, Symmetry, and Length, Width, and Height. 

Other details include the insurance replacement value, the owner’s information (Full Name, Address, and Contact Details). Clear photos, a small item description, and additional notes are also included. 

How much does a jewelry appraisal cost? 

Depending on the appraiser you have decided to continue with, you will be charged anything from $50 up to $150. Most jewelry appraisers will charge a flat rate fee per piece, while others will offer a sweet deal if you have more than one piece of jewelry that needs to be appraised. In addition, jewelry appraisers that charge an hourly rate are also common. However, not knowing upfront the cost of your jewelry appraisal can lead to unexpected fees.  

Where can I get my jewelry appraised? 

Where you get your jewelry appraised is important. It does matter. For one, the appraiser should be trusted and also have the necessary skills and technical know-how to properly evaluate your jewelry. After having that sorted, feel free to contact or pay a visit to your local jeweler, or trusted pawn shop. And if you are a regular customer, the best thing is many of them will provide a jewelry appraisal for free. 

Keep in mind, however, that you want the exact value of your jewelry on the appraisal document. See, an inflated jewelry appraisal will start issues with the insurance company, or not be that useful for tax purposes. You don’t want to spend much either, especially if your piece is not worth that much. See a jewelry appraisal is not a one-time-thing. The price of the precious metals and gemstones your jewelry is made of, fluctuate significantly. Within 5 years, for example, your jewelry might cost less or more. The latter has more chances to happen as the price of precious gems and precious metals is always on the rise. 

The Legal Guidelines of Jewelry Appraisal

Currently, there is no regulation that requires jewelry appraisals to have a certification or other educational standard that allows them to practice this trade. Industry standards for appraising are what serve as unwritten rules. If you are looking for the best jewelry appraisal, opt for on-site appraisers, or expert gemologists. These professionals can not only appraise your jewelry, but also answer questions that you might have about what to do with it.
In addition, it is illegal to intentionally over-value a piece of jewelry. The appraiser should evaluate the piece with caution and determine its exact worth. For a trustworthy jewelry appraiser, head over to The National Association of Jewelry Appraisers. You can either apply to become a member, or find an appraiser for fine gems, jewelry, and timepieces.