It’s not an easy thing to do, emotionally at least. Here are your options…
Selling an engagement ring is never fun, no matter what the reason behind it. Maybe you’re upgrading your ring and want to get the best value possible, or maybe your reasons are not so joyful. Either way, there’s no reason to feel ashamed about what you’re doing. And the good news is you’re definitely not the first person to be in this situation. Re-selling engagement rings is becoming more and more commonplace, which means there are a number of options available to anyone who wishes to part with theirs. You will have to take a few steps first, however…
Be Sure of Your Decision
Whatever your reasons for wanting to sell your engagement ring, be sure they’re the right ones. If you’re doing it out of spite, anger, sadness or another negative emotion, or if it’s a spur of the moment kind of thing, stop and think. It may not seem likely now, but you could end up regretting your decision in the future. Wait until you’ve made peace with whatever the background situation is, and if you still feel like you want to sell then go for it. It has to be a rational decision, not an emotional one.
Get the Paperwork in Order
Still want to part with your bling? Before you even think about taking it to a dealer or posting it online, you’ll need to get your paperwork in order. Did your diamond come with a certificate? Do you have the jeweller’s receipt? Do you have an appraisal report? You’ll need as much authentic paperwork as possible to prove the quality of your ring and to get the best price for it. It goes without saying that if your engagement ring has suffered some damage while you wore it, some of the paperwork may no longer be valid and you may have to start from scratch.
Get it Cleaned
Nobody will want to buy a dirty, grimy engagement ring! Get it professionally cleaned, even if it already looks nice and shiny. If you’ve worn your ring regularly there will be oil residue from your fingers and tiny bits of dust and grime trapped in all those nooks and crannies (no matter how hygienic you are). Most jewellers will clean it while you wait or will at least offer a 24 hour turnaround. Once it’s all polished up, keep it in its box so it stays that way. Also keep in mind that if your band is white gold, rhodium or some other metals, it may be worth re-plating it before selling.
Get an Appraisal
So your paperwork is in order and your engagement ring is in top condition. Surely you’re ready to sell now? Not quite. You need to know how much your ring is actually worth in order to get the best price for it. If you think you’ll be able to sell it for more than the original price, you’re sadly mistaken (sorry). Take your ring to an appraiser to get an honest, unbiased opinion. Or better yet, get two or three appraisals. As well as telling you how much your ring is realistically worth, they’ll offer advice on selling and pricing strategies.
The Industry Route
Now it’s finally time to sell! There are two paths you could go down – selling your engagement ring back into the industry or selling it to a member of the public. Industry options include jewellers, diamond buyers, or pawn brokers. The good news is there’ll be minimum fuss and minimum delay. The bad news is they’ll only buy a piece of jewellery if they can make a profit from re-selling, so you probably won’t make as much cash as you’d hoped for. You’ll also have no idea who your engagement ring will end up with or if it will stay as an engagement ring; most buyers will be more interested in the gems and will likely melt down the metal.
The Public Route
If giving your engagement ring to a good home is important to you, then public selling is the way to go. You have full control over who you sell to and where you sell. Since members of the public don’t have the same insider knowledge as industry experts and are buying from a more emotional/aesthetic standpoint, you can also expect to get a little more bang for your buck. Try the big sites like eBay or Craigslist if you want lots of potential buyers to choose from (but beware of scams). ‘I Do Now I Don’t’ is an online marketplace dedicated to re-selling jewellery. It may not have the same reach as the others but is much more specialised.
The Hard Truth
If you’re hoping to make a profit from re-selling your engagement ring, you won’t. Unless you’re famous. The fact that you’re selling an engagement ring, a symbol of eternal love and commitment, will taint it in the public’s eyes and make it less valuable. As far as the jewellery industry is concerned, the price of your metal is set by the market and subject to fluctuation. And your diamonds, unless they are huge (i.e. several carats) and of near flawless quality, are worth very little when second hand. It’s sad, but true – diamonds, especially the average engagement ring sized ones – aren’t rare at all. So don’t expect to rake in cash, but do strive to get a fair price either way.