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by Jesus Zabala - 4 min read

Where to Get Jewelry Appraised for Free?

Where to get jewelry appraised for free is a question that often arises for individuals who are looking to sell or insure their precious pieces. While professional jewelry appraisers charge a fee for their services, there are still a few places where you can get your jewelry appraised for free.

  • A jewelry appraisal is a statement of value that spells out the worth of your item.
  • The person doing the appraisal does a thorough inspection of your jewelry to determine the value.
  • However, many people misuse the term jewelry appraisal and apply it to other, related documents.
  • For example, there is a big difference between a certified jewelry appraisal and a jewelry grading, also known as a lab report or jewelry certification.
Where to Get Jewelry Appraised for Free
Source: shutterstock.com / Photo Contributor: New Africa

What Are the Different Types of Jewelry Appraisals?

A one-page jewelry evaluation from a local jeweler, for example, may be useful as a pricing guideline, and is commonly used to determine insurance replacement value, or help you create an estate or tax plan, but is not useful in understanding exactly the quality, specifications and other attributes inherent to your item.

  • A jewelry evaluation is also not a legally substantial document.
  • A jeweler or pawn shop, however, can easily weigh and measure your gold, silver, or common gemstones.
  • For scrap value and produce a one-page evaluation of what you own, along with an estimated resale value.

However, this is not a certified appraisal, but typically a one-page jewelry evaluation that is not legally helpful if you find yourself in a dispute about the value of your item.

A Jewelry Evaluation, However, Can Be Had at These Locations:

  • A local jeweler near you.
  • A jewelry laboratory, such as GIA or IGI
  • Worthy.com provides each item mailed in a copy of a lab report with an estimated resale price range from GIA or IGI for free.

An appraisal will help you understand the market value of your item, but a lab report will tell you exactly the qualities of your item, narrowing down a more definitive range of prices you can expect.

  • If your goal is to have a general idea of your jewelry’s value, consider working with worthy to get an estimate and then a lab report from a gemologist.
  • At the same time, always remember: Your jewelry piece is only worth the amount someone else is willing to pay.
Jewelry Evaluation
Source: shutterstock.com / Photo Contributor: New Africa

Jewelry Appraisal vs Selling Price: How Do Appraisal Prices Compare With Actual Selling Prices?

It is a common mistake to confuse jewelry appraisal price and the selling price. However, a value given for insurance lists the retail replacement cost, which is very different from what you’d get in the resale market.

  • Expect in general to receive about 50% or less of what you paid for your jewelry should you sell it at an online jewelry buyer or even less at a pawn shop.
  • If you’re curious about the value of unique men's rings, sometimes local jewelry appraisers give you an evaluation for free, which may serve as a good benchmark, but this won’t match what you’d earn if you sell your valuable — whether to a local jeweler, an online jewelry buyer, pawnshop, gold exchange, diamond exchange, eBay or another source.
  • Unlike a detailed and stamped jewelry appraisal from a certified appraiser, an evaluation is not legally binding if there is a dispute over the value of your item.
  • Keep in mind that the most valuable — by far! — part of a ring is the center stone.

If your jewelry is highly designed with many smaller stones, the retail price will be disproportionately higher than the resale price, as nearly all buyers will only resell the center stone — and the metal and smaller stones are considered scrap.

How to Appraise Jewelry

A common concern among jewelry owners is how jewelry appraisal works. You might wonder how to appraise jewelry yourself, but the process requires in-depth, scientific knowledge of gemstones and metals.

  • The main way most people understand the value of their jewelry is through a local jeweler, who can give you a decent estimate of how much your item would get at retail value.
  • Retail value is how much that jeweler could sell your ring, gold, diamond or earrings for in his or her store.
  • This price is different from the price the jeweler will pay you today for your valuables which will be far less than the retail value.
  • A jewelry appraisal is useful for insurance purposes, estate planning, and other legal matters, as well as to satisfy your curiosity.
How to Appraise Jewelry
Source: shutterstock.com / Photo Contributor: LanKS

Are Jewelry Appraisals Accurate?

Insurance appraisals may serve the purpose of buying coverage for your jewelry collection, but when selling your valuables, we recommend taking extra steps to get the most detailed report about the specifications of your item.

  • This gives you the confidence that you are getting the highest price for your diamond, gold, or other jewelry as well as providing true value for whoever buys your jewelry.
  • As a general rule, updating your appraisal every two to three years is a good idea, as the price of gold, platinum, and silver fluctuates daily, and the market value for all jewelry ebbs and flows.
  • Often, you can get a free appraisal from a local jeweler, gold or diamond exchange, or pawn shop near you given you are a regular customer.

Also, bear in mind that an appraisal is often inflated above what you might pay for the same item at a jewelry store, but can be useful for insurance or tax purposes.

Jesús  is the founder and designer of JewelryLab. He is the Head of Design and also oversees production, quality control, and precious metal sourcing.