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Jewelry, like other products sold retail have a high mark up for good reasons. Of course there is the cost of the precious metals, gemstones and labor used plus the labor for each piece. But like any store, a jewelry store, has many expenses like rent, utilities, insurance, employees, furniture, advertising and of course their profit. All these costs must be factored into each piece of jewelry. The good thing about jewelry is that it does retain the value of the precious metals and gemstones used. Precious metal prices and gemstones historically have gone up in value, which is good news. But how much is a $10,000 ring worth? There is no easy answer as it depends on many factors, but using this guide there is a way to “estimate the Cash Value”.
First let’s talk about the precious metals… gold or platinum. At this time gold is high, even worth much more than platinum which is uncommon. Today, pure (24K) gold is worth about $1,350 per ounce, there are 31.103 grams per ounce, so about $43 per gram. But that is for pure gold. 14 karat gold is only 58.5% gold and 18 karat gold is 75% gold. “Solid” 14 karat gold is worth about $25 per gram. But often jewelry is constructed using lower karat gold solder which has less pure gold. Also, used jewelry must be processed into pure gold, which costs money and some gold is lost in the process. So that means the Cash Value of used 14K gold is in the $15 – $25 per gram range. The cash value of 18K gold is in the $25 – $35 per gram range.
Platinum is currently worth less than gold (which is indeed rare), only $800 per pure ounce. Unlike gold, most platinum jewelry is 90% or 95% pure but platinum costs more to process than gold. So you can estimate that platinum jewelry is currently worth about the same as 14K gold, about $18 – $25 per gram range. Special or signed jewelry will be worth significantly more than the following prices.
Approximate Precious Metal Cash Value
|10K Gold||$11 – $17 per gram|
|14K Gold||$15 – $25 per gram|
|18K Gold||$25 – $35 per gram|
|21K Gold||$30 – $38 per gram|
|24K Gold||$35 – $43 per gram|
$18 – $25 per gram
NOTE: Precious metal prices fluctuate daily, prices always adjusted to current metal prices.
Silver jewelry typically has a very low Cash Market Value in the $0.50 to $5 per piece unless it is made and signed by a famous maker. Sterling silverware, tea sets, coins may have a significant value. Silver items are covered later in the guide, please see the “Other” section.
That brings us to gemstones. The most used gemstone is a diamond and the method for calculating the Cash Value is quite complex. However, you can estimate the Cash Value with the following information. First let me remind you that this guide is just a reference and it is best to have a GIA Graduate Gemologist Appraiser examine any jewelry or watch item to get an accurate current Cash Value. Small side diamonds (under 0.20 carat) are referred to as “melee”. These small diamonds are divided into numerous cutting styles and most have the same 58 facets as a modern round brilliant cut main diamonds. The Cash Value of melee diamonds is based on weight and quality but because they are small, their weight is low and so is the Cash Value. Whether round, square or other, melee diamonds do have a value which is in the $25 – $500 per carat range. A typical melee diamond (or accent diamond) may weigh 0.02ct which would give a value between $0.50 and $10 each. Of course larger fine melee diamonds are worth considerably more. Colored melee gemstones like ruby, sapphire or emerald have a lower value plus they are very difficult to remove without breaking.
I could write a book about center stones. Diamond, ruby, sapphire, emerald, pearl, alexandrite, tanzanite, amethyst, garnet, topaz and the list goes on and on. For this guide let’s divide these into three groups: Diamonds, Fine Colored Gemstones and Colored Gemstones.
Jewelry Cash Value: We have covered precious metals, diamonds and gemstones but what is that $10,000 ring worth? A diamond is forever but styles change and jewelry wears out. The fact is that most used jewelry will be disassembled and recycled into current styles. The Cash Market Value of any piece of jewelry does not depend on the appraisal price. The value of any jewelry it depends on the metal weight, the stone sizes and the stone qualities. Jewelry made by very well-known companies like Cartier, Van Cleef & Arpels and Tiffany enjoy much higher cash market values as do other famous makers.
Use the guides above to get a ballpark idea and if you are ready, email Mr. Benowitz, Lou@Gemwin.com president of www.gemwin.com to get Cash Market Value.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]