Getting An Appraisal For Your Diamond Ring: Do Your Homework

Whether it’s an engagement ring, a Valentine’s Day gift, or an anniversary present, you should have that diamond ring appraised as soon as you get it. You may be fortunate to buy your jewelry from somewhere that gives an appraisal with the purchase. If not, take the time to get the ring appraised by an accredited appraiser.
One of the most important reasons to get an appraisal is so that you can immediately go, and have it insured. It is recommended that you get a new appraisal every five years because of the fluctuating prices of stones and the precious metals in which they are set in.
Before you get an appraisal, make sure that you understand the process, what it means, and the importance of having one. This article is going to aid you in understanding the process and why they are so important to have for your diamond jewelry.

An Appraisal: What is it?

***Before going into this explanation, it needs to be understood that an appraisal is not going to be a reflection of the true value of the ring. For example, a ring that is appraised for $9,164, is likely going to sell for about $4,582. Do not confuse an appraisal for the selling price or resale value of the ring. It is commonplace, within this industry, for an appraisal to be twice of what the retail value of the piece would be.
An appraisal is an official document that explains the allocated worth of your diamond ring. Incorporated within the appraisal are the diamond(s), their settings, and any other stones in the piece. Appraisals are given by, both, jewelers and professional appraisers alike.
Because of the inflated rates that are given in an appraisal, insurance companies are able to ask higher insurance rates for the diamond ring. It is also a way for jewelers to market their diamond rings at an advertised great deal. This is why you, as an owner, need to understand these appraisals so that you are able to be realistic about the price in which you will receive if you ever decide to resell or trade-in your diamond ring.
An appraisal is far more for insurance rate purposes than it is for resale value prices.

An Appraisal: Why You Need One?

There are two major reasons that you are going to want to get an official appraisal for your diamond ring:
The first one is so that you are able to get an insurance policy for it. You will be able to take out an insurance policy just for the ring itself, or you can add on a rider to your homeowner’s insurance. Whatever you decide, you are going to be able to fully cover the ring if it ever happens to be damaged, stolen, or lost. Like when looking into insurance for anything, you will want to shop around for the best rates and the best coverage.
The other reason is strictly for the owner. It allows you to know, in an official capacity, the value of the ring. It gives you a certain peace of mind if you are to ever sell the ring or trade it in for a new one.

An Appraisal: Who Can Do Them?

There are a couple of different ways that you can get an appraisal. There are some diamond sellers whose diamond rings will already come with an appraisal. You can also go to an independent appraiser to get one on a ring that didn’t come with one.
Diamond Sellers
Some high-end, highly reputable diamond dealers are going to make sure that their diamonds already come with an appraisal. This is one of the best options because of all of the time and money that it is going to save you in the appraisal process.
This is so helpful because you are not going to have to do extensive research in order to find a reputable appraiser. The appraisals are going to be comparable to the current market values and you will be able to take that appraisal right to the insurance company, so they can get your policy started.
Unfortunately, not all diamond sellers are not going to sell their diamond rings with an appraisal.
Independent Appraisers
If you have to go out and find an appraiser, there are a few things that you are going to want to look for and do before you take the ring to just anyone.

  • First and foremost, you have to find an appraiser that has the proper professional credentials. An appraiser needs to have the proper education and experience in gemology so that their appraisal is the best for the price.
  • Secondly, find an appraiser that will take the time to appraise the ring right in front of you. Unfortunately, like in any business, there are those who may not be so honest. They may switch the ring to another one and thus, your appraisal is not going to be accurate, or true. This face-to-face process also allows you (as the owner of the piece) to understand your diamond ring on a deeper level. You will know everything about the ring, positive and negative.
  • Lastly, let the appraiser know that the ring has already been paid for and it is not going to be returned. This statement takes away any incentive for them to over-scrutinize the ring or be overly harsh on the appraisal.

Some appraisers may do this if they think that they could convince you to buy something from them because they can make a lot more money in selling you a ring than they would from just an appraisal. Also, they may have a standing financial deal in place with a particular diamond dealer if they refer you to that dealer. Tell them the ring is bought and paid for and this takes away this possibility.

An Appraisal: When You Should Get One

If the ring doesn’t come with an appraisal, you should go and get one as soon as you leave the store. This will allow you to get it insured as soon as possible. This is one of the reasons why it is a great idea to buy your diamond from a dealer who’s going to include an appraisal in the purchase.
The price of diamond rings rises over the course of time, which is why it is necessary to get a new appraisal every 5 years or so. If you were to try and sell a diamond ring with a ten-year-old appraisal, you are not going to get anywhere near the value that you would if you were to stay up-to-date on your appraisals.
This is one of the situations that you really want to avoid because a dealer is not going to do a fresh appraisal in order to get you more money because they are in the business to make a profit.

An Appraisal: The Cost

There are different factors that are going to determine the fee in which you are going to pay for your appraisal. These factors include a gemologists years of experience and where they are located. This fee is going to be anywhere from $45 to $155. You will not pay anything extra if you received one at the time the diamond ring was purchased.
There are a couple of different warning signs that you are going to want to watch out for when you are looking for someone to appraise your ring. The person or company doing the appraisal should be able to give you a flat rate before you ever decide to do business with them, or they are going to charge by the hour or per piece.
Warning signs should arise if they are charging you a rate that is incredibly cheap or a fee that is a percentage of the value that they determine the ring to be worth.

Know The Difference Between A Certificate and An Appraisal

Certificates are based on a grading system for your ring. These certificates are commonly handed down by the GIA or the AGS. The grades that are given in the certificate are given based on carat, cut, clarity, and color and there is no dollar value attached to it. These grades are given after in-depth examinations of a diamond in a laboratory setting with sophisticated equipment. These labs have particular guidelines to follow and they are uniform across the industry.
Appraisers work independently and do not have the equipment that they have in the laboratories. The value they give your diamond ring is not going to be as uniform across the industry as the grading system certificates are. There is a big difference between the two.