Saturday, 2 April 2016

Recycle your Jewellery, but be careful.

scrap gold

What do you do with old jewellery you no longer wear?

Maybe you have an old gold chain necklace that has broken and it sits at the bottom of your drawer gathering dust.

Why not consider selling it as scrap and use the money to buy something new? (or pay down your credit card)

This seems like a good idea, as even broken jewellery has a value for the precious metals it contains.

Jewellery that is in good condition may well be worth more than the scrap value if you can find a buyer.

Do I sell or scrap?

No matter the condition of your jewellery, the lowest price you should get is the scrap value of the piece.

With broken jewellery, the scrap value is the best price you will be able to achieve.

If your jewellery is in good condition, consider selling it as is. You should achieve a price above the scrap value, but if it doesn’t sell you can always decide to scrap it later.

There are many places you can sell your jewellery on-line including eBay, Gumtree and the Trading Post. If you have a Facebook account, you could consider letting your friends know you have jewellery for sale too.

How can I tell what the scrap value is?

In the case of a piece of solid gold jewellery, there are a couple of factors.

  • How much does it weigh?

  • What is the carat of the gold?

The weight for scrap is the weight of the gold components in the jewellery. You need to remove any stones and the spring steel in the clasps for an accurate weight.

The carat of the gold should be stamped into the piece. It will be written as a carat – i.e. 9ct,  14ct, 18ct or as a number 375, 583, 750.

The actual value of the gold in the jewellery is

  • the weight in grams x the carat / 24 x the current price per gram for gold.

  • the weight in grams x the number / 1000 x the current price per gram of gold.

The current price for gold can be found here.

How much will I get paid?

The best place to sell your scrap is to a bullion dealer (or precious metal refiner). They will give you the best price, which is normally around 90 to 95% of the gold value. They will not pay for any other precious metals in the jewellery. So a 9ct chain will have some silver and copper as well as the gold, but you will only be paid for the gold content.

Pawn shops will normally offer you about 30 to 50% of the gold value even if your jewellery can be sold as is. They are not the best place to sell your jewellery unless you are prepared to take a low price but get paid straight away. They are in business to make a profit and if they can’t sell your jewellery quickly, will turn it into scrap, so they must have a margin between the scrap price and what they pay you (even if it is huge!)

Gold buyers in shopping malls will normally offer a very low amount, similar to pawn shops, so avoid these too unless you need the money right now.

There has been a surge in the number of businesses that buy your gold on-line. Typically they will send you a ‘kit’ in the post which has some information and an envelope to put your jewellery into and post to them. Most of these places don’t show the current price they are paying and have been known to pay well under the prices you could expect from a bullion dealer. Proceed very carefully.

Other Options

If you have other things to sell, you might consider having a garage sale, a market stall or a car boot sale. Make sure you know what the scrap value is, and never sell for less than this amount.

You could also take your jewellery to a jeweller and have them use the gold to make you something new. That way you should only be paying them for their labour and creativity.




Recycle your Jewellery, but be careful.

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