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If you are thinking about selling unused gold jewelry, coins or other gold items for cash, what are the best (and reputable) places to get the highest price for your gold? Also, how do you find out how much you can sell your gold for? Lastly, how do you sell your gold without getting scammed?
Reasons To Sell Your Gold
Here are some common reasons why you are thinking about selling your gold:
- You need some cash urgently, especially when they lose their jobs suddenly or have an emergency
- You have some gold items that you inherited and want to turn them into cash
- You want to take profit on their gold investments when the gold price is high (e.g. gold coins)
Should You Sell Gold Right Now?
Right now, gold price stands at $1635 per ounce.
Is it a good time to sell your gold now?
Let’s look at the historical chart of gold price:
From its low of $1050/ounce in 2016, it has already gone up by about 60%.
Will it go up even more?
But, will its price start to go down soon?
It’s also possible.
If the price goes up after you’ve sold your gold, you will probably regret that you have sold it a bit early.
But what if the price starts to go down all the way right after you have sold your gold, you will probably feel lucky that you sold it at the right time.
You see, no one can predict the direction of gold price. ( Just like no one can predict the direction of the stock market)
So, it’s impossible for anyone to time the market accurately.
In other words, it’s not possible for you to pick the absolute high of the gold price to sell your gold.
So, the right question to ask yourself is, “Am I okay with selling my gold at this current price, regardless of whether it goes up or down later on?”
If you have bought your gold at any time other than the year 2012, you should be able to make a decent profit because the gold price has gone back up to near its all-time high which is about $1889 per ounce.
Let’s say if the gold price does indeed go up to $1889 per ounce, how much do you potentially lose?
For every ounce, you are potentially giving up a possible additional profit of $256/ounce.
That’s a possibility.
But, there are always two sides to the story.
Let’s say if the gold price does go down to its most recent low of $1450 (or even lower to $1200), how much do you potentially lose while waiting for the gold price to go even higher?
For every ounce, you are potentially losing a profit of $183/ounce that you can lock in right now.
While you think about that, I want to share with you what farmers do to deal with the unpredictable crop prices.
They use a simple financial instrument called “Futures” to help them lock in the price they are comfortable with.
That means they accept the possibility that they will miss out on potential profits if the price will go up in the future.
Why do they do that?
This is because they care more about protecting their downside in case the price goes down in the future.
So, is the current price the highest it will go in the near term?
No one really knows.
But, is it a good time to sell your gold now?
Judging from how much it has gone up in the past few years, I would say it’s a good time to sell your gold now.
That brings us to the next question.
How Much Can You Sell Your Gold For?
So, how much can you sell your gold for?
You can either get a professional to appraise your gold or you can try to determine the value of your gold jewelry by yourself at home.
And I would recommend that you calculate how much your gold is worth because you will have an idea about how much you can get for your gold.
Pricing Your Gold Jewelry
So, how do you calculate the price of your gold jewelry?
It’s actually quite simple.
All you need is to follow these two easy steps:
- Find out the purity of gold jewelry
- Determine the weight of gold jewelry
So, how do you check the purity of your gold jewelry?
First, you need to understand how it is measured.
You might probably know that karat is used to measure the purity of gold with 24 karat being the purest form of gold (i.e 100% gold)
As 24 karat gold is too soft in its original form, your gold jewelry is usually a mixture of gold and other metal such as platinum.
So, you might have heard of 14K gold or 18K gold?
What does this actually mean?
Here, “K” stands for Karat.
As 24K is 100% pure gold, 18K gold is actually 75% gold which is calculated by dividing 18 by 24.
What about 14K gold?
It means it is about 58% gold which is calculated by dividing 12 by 24.
Below is the gold purity conversion chart you can use to determine the percentage of gold in your jewelry.
Now, you need to find out how many karats is your gold jewelry.
This is generally indicated by the stamp markings on it.
For example, the marking on the inside of this Tiffiny & Co wedding ring indicates that it’s 75% gold.
The letters “AU” is the symbol for gold on the periodic table.
The marking “750” means that 750 out of 1000 parts of the ring are made of pure gold. In short, it’s 75% pure gold which is considered high-grade gold alloy.
Now that you know the purity of your gold jewelry, the next step is to determine its weight.
Take note that it’s a common practice to measure the weight of gold jewelry in grams while pure gold (e.g. gold bar) is priced per ounce.
Now, how do you price gold jewelry once you get the purity percentage and its weight?
Let’s look at an example.
Let’s say that your gold ring is 6 grams and it is 18K gold (i.e. 75% gold).
So, the total weight of gold in your ring is 6 x 75% which is 4.5 grams.
The spot price for gold (i.e. current market price) is $1635 per ounce.
As it is denoted in ounce, we have to convert the price to grams.
1 ounce is approximately 28.35 grams.
So, the gold price per gram is $57.67 which is calculated by dividing $1635 by 28.35.
Price of gold jewelry = gold price per gram x weight of gold in grams
Now, the estimated value of your gold jewelry is $258.5 which is calculated by multiplying $57.67 with 4.5.
Pricing Your Gold Coins
Now, what if you want to sell your gold coins?
First, you need to know what kind of gold coins you are holding.
A gold coin is a coin that is made mostly or entirely of gold.
Some gold bullion coins such as Britannia, Canadian Maple Leaf, and American Buffalo are pure gold (i.e. 99.99% gold), while alloyed gold coins such as the American Gold Eagle and South African Krugerrand are generally 91.7% gold.
So, how do you check how much these coins are worth?
The value of gold coins depends on two things:
- the value of the gold content
- the collector’s value
The value of the gold content is determined by both the weight of gold and the prevailing market price of gold.
Let’s look at an example.
Let’s say you want to sell American Gold Eagle coins.
They are produced in various weights (1/10 oz, 1/4 oz, 1/2 oz, and 1 oz) with each carrying 22 karats of gold (i.e. 91.7% gold)
Each coin is marked by weight, which is the actual amount of gold weight in troy ounces.
For example, coins marked 1-oz contain a full troy ounce of gold content with some additional weight attributable to the silver and copper alloy metals.
1 troy ounce is equivalent to 31.1 grams.
So, 1-oz American gold eagle coin contains 31.1 grams of gold.
By the way, American gold eagle coins carry face values of $5, $10, $25, and $50, but this is NOT the true value of these coins.
Its true value should be equivalent to the melt value of the gold content in the coins.
For a 1-oz American gold eagle coin, the value can be calculated this way:
price = weight of gold in the coin x current market price of gold
Given the current market price of gold in grams is $57.67.(which we have already calculated earlier) and the weight of the gold in the coin is 31.1 grams, the value of 1-oz American gold eagle coin will be around $1793.
Now, for gold coins, there is also the numismatic value that you need to take into account to arrive at a fair price.
Generally, the rarer the gold coin, the higher the collector’s value is.
Where To Sell Gold Near You
Now that you have a rough idea about how much your gold is worth, where can you sell your gold for the best price?
Either you can find a gold buyer near you or you can find an online gold buyer where you can simply send your gold over by mail and get paid instantly.
Generally, below are all the legitimate places that buy and sell gold:
- Pawnshop near you
- Local jewelers near you
- Local precious metal dealers near you
- Online auction sites
- eBay Bullion center
- Online gold buying sites
So, which one is the best place to sell your gold?
And what should you look out for in choosing a gold buyer?
Personally, if I want to buy or sell something, I would want to know the person that I am dealing with is honest and reputable.
That’s why I always do my research and check their reviews.
If you can get a recommendation from a close friend who has dealt with them personally, then it is good too.
But, what if you cannot get any recommendation from your friends and family?
Then online reviews is the next best thing that you can rely on to make an informed decision.
Next, you want to make sure the company has been in this business for a long time.
The longer it has been around, the better it is.
Finally, you want to go to Better Business Bureau to check what is the business rating of the company that you want to trade gold with.
How To Sell Gold
So, how do you sell your gold to make sure that you get a fair price?
Step 1: Estimate the price of your gold
Whether you are selling gold jewelry, gold coin or scrap gold, the pricing method is the same.
The price of gold items depends on the value of the gold content.
And the value of the gold content is determined by both the weight of gold and the prevailing market price of gold.
If you don’t have a digital gram weighing scale at home, here is the link to getting a cheap but accurate one.
If you don’t like to do the calculations yourself, there is this online gold price calculator that you can use to check how much is your gold worth.
Step 2: Get a list of local gold buyers and online gold buyer
Next, you can use Yelp to check if there are any local pawnshops or jewelers that buy gold.
Write down their company name and contact number.
Next, you want to Google for any online gold buying websites.
Again, write down their company name and contact number.
Lastly, you want to check if there are any online auction sites that you can use to sell your gold item through auction.
Step 3: Check ratings and reviews for each
After you have a list of potential gold buyers, what you want to do next is to find out whether it is a reputable and legitimate gold buyer.
Here are some things that you want to find out:
- Business registration (i.e. is it a registered business?)
- How many years has it been in business? (the longer the better)
- Is it just a local business or a regional /national company? ( the bigger the company, the less likely it will do something unscrupulous)
- What is its rating on Better Business Bureau
- What’re its ratings on independent consumers review sites such as Trustpilot or Yelp reviews ( the greater number of the reviews, the more reliable the review is )
- Google the terms ” Name of Gold Buyer + Scam”, “Name of Gold Buyer + Lawsuits” and “Name of Gold Buyer + Reviews”
Based on the information that you have found, the next step is to shortlist the gold buyers that have good reviews and are reputable.
Step 4: Request for quotes & compare the quotes
Once you have narrowed down your list of gold buyers, you can pick up the phone and contact them for quotes.
Here are some of the questions you might want to ask:
- How will you assay my gold jewelry/gold coins? (you should ask them to explain the process in detail to you)
- What is the value of my jewelry/coins based on?
- What’s your price for buying gold?
- If you are selling gold jewelry with gemstones or diamonds, you want to ask if the value of the diamonds or gemstones included in the final price.
- Do you need to provide any information when selling your gold? ( for example, do you need to provide your IC?)
- If you are talking to an online gold dealer, you want to ask if your gold is fully insured while in transit and also ask if they pay for the shipping.
- How will you get paid? Cash, wire transfer or other methods?
- How soon will you get paid?
The very first step is always to go to your local pawnshop and jewelry dealer to get your gold valued by them.
It is easy and convenient to go down and immediately get a quote for your gold item.
Once you have a base price, you can shop around more to see which dealer offers the best price for your gold.
For online gold buyers, you might need to mail in your item to get a quote from them.
Generally they will offer to pay for the shipping and also insure your gold while in transit.
But, before you do that, you MUST read the terms and conditions carefully.
For example, what happens if you reject their offer and ask for your gold to be mailed back?
Also, what happens if they lose your gold?
Step 5: Choose the best offer for your gold
The last step is the easiest.
Based on all the quotes that you have gotten, you see which gold dealer gives you the highest price for your gold and then accept their offer.