Affordability is one of the main reasons why people choose to purchase second-hand jewellery but finding quality pieces at the right price can sometimes be tricky, especially if you’ve never purchased second-hand jewellery before.
How to Ensure You’re Buying Genuine Second-Hand Jewellery
It’s important to keep an open mind when purchasing pre-loved jewellery. Knowing what to look out for will ensure you are buying a genuine piece and getting your money’s worth. Here are a few things to keep in mind and look out for when you’re shopping around:
- Hallmarks and Stamps
One of the best ways to find out exactly what you’re about to buy is to look out for hallmarks and stamps. These stamps and hallmarks state the carat rating of gold jewellery, so you would see something like 9ct(375), 14ct(585) or 18ct. These stamps can usually be found on the inside of a ring or the back of a necklace or watch.
- Certificate of Authenticity
Genuine second-hand jewellery will generally always come with a certificate of authenticity. There are a number of organisations that certify jewellery and gems in the United Kingdom, including the National Association of Jewellers.
- Use a Magnet to Test the Metal
If you want to test whether metal is genuine, you can use the magnet test. Naturally, you won’t be able to test gold using a magnet but most other metals will respond to one. Gold can be tested using more scientific methods but this is not something you can do as an everyday buyer, which is when certificates of authenticity come in handy.
- Watch Out for Forged Documents
Unfortunately, there are a lot of second-hand jewellery dealers who forge documents. Before you go ahead and purchase a pre-loved piece, check the documents for spelling mistakes or blurring printing.
- Research the Dealer
Another way that you can tell whether a second-hand jeweller is authentic is to turn to Google. After a quick search, you should be able to find out more about whether or not they can be trusted. There are a number of review sites, including social media, so it’s not difficult to find out more about who you’re dealing with.
Along with stepping into a physical store, there’s also the option of buying second-hand jewellery on auction. Fortunately, most of today’s top auctioneers are reputable, which means their jewellery will be genuine too. Just be prepared to go up against bigger buyers if you decide to go this route. You will also need to know what you’re looking for and how much you’re willing to and should be paying.