When you need cash quick, raiding your jewelry box for items you don’t seem to be wearing anymore might be an easy way to get it. But keep in mind that jewelry sells at incredible markup, so you’re not going to get the appraised value—which is retail replacement cost—so you should only sell jewelry you’re not going to miss.
To get an idea of what your piece is worth, check out eBay’s completed auctions for similar items. Ebay cuts out the middleman, but if you’re going to take your jewelry to a pawn shop in Vienna, VA, add a discount that will cover the buyer’s resell profit. If you item contains precious gems—especially diamonds—it’s also a good idea to get some free evaluations from diamond buyers to give you an even better ballpark value. (Hint: appraisers are also good sources of market trend information.) Check appraiser reviews before visiting.
Next clean up your items with a safe jewelry cleaner or warm water and dish soap (if you’re unsure how to clean your jewelry, ask wherever you shop for jewelry in the DC area). If the piece needs repairs, consult a professional.
Now you’re ready to accept offers on your jewelry. Jewelers may offer a better price, but often it’s only in store credit. Consignment jewelers are another option, but that can take time and shop owners often take a big cut for commission. If you want cash now, a pawn stop in Northern Virginia is likely a better bet, even if you might not get the optimum price.
Next week: how to get the best price at a pawn shop in Vienna, VA.