Jewelry is very much a form of art, it can expressive, personal, and very expensive. The difference between jewelry and a painting, however, is that the canvas and materials used with jewelry are valuable, finite metals and stones. Although price is a major concern, there are some major considerations you should consider when reaching out to credit jewelers for your next statement piece. To ensure you make the right choice on that gift to a special someone or yourself, here are seven things to consider before buying jewelry.
1. Determine Your Needs
Of course, you’re looking to buy jewelry but what is it that you need? Purchasing anything on impulse can come with serious repercussions, instead, have an idea of the style, length, fit, and material that best suits the person who will wear it. Some people prefer simplistic designs that maybe only have one focal point, if you’re buying an engagement ring, it is best to get a gauge on what your partner is keen to. For all types of jewelry, size matters and if you can’t see a piece in person you’ll want to find online outlets that can provide dimensions and a scale to size it right. Ultimately, it is an accessory that has to look amazing when worn, so make sure it is making the right statement and that you’re getting the best value.
You know what you want to buy but what else should you know about that diamond-studded pendant you’re dead set on acquiring? Well for anyone in the market for diamond jewelry the term 4C’s will come up as it describes the carat, color, clarity, and cut. Knowing about diamond carat size and gold karat quality will help when determining how much the jewelry you’re buying is worth, as well as ensure you get the best value.
3. Set a Budget
Having a budget in mind when shopping online or in-person for jewelry is important, as there’s really no limit to how high the costs can get on any one item. If you’re buying with cash or using one of the many credit jewelers out there for your next purchase, stick to what you can afford. If you have done the research on diamonds then you have become aware of the price per full carat, this can vary as the quality and cut change, and this is then transferred to the setting but you’ll want to maintain your price point or just wait.
4. Find a Trustworthy Jeweler
Shopping online for jewelry can be just as nerve-wracking as shopping in-store. Regardless of where you plan on purchasing jewelry, you’ll want to check the reputation of the store by using internet reviews, word of mouth, and social media. Try to find a jeweler that is American Gem Society certified, even a good rating with the Better Business Beuarea can help as the number of retailers trying to pass off low quality and fraudulent jewelry is high in some instances. You should feel comfortable and have full transparency with the retailer you’re using, those who have been around the longest will have plenty of knowledge and point you in the right direction, even online they will provide excellent service as they understand the gravity of your purchase.
5. Check Authenticity
Unfortunately, there are retailers who try to pass fake jewelry or low-quality pieces as the real deal. When buying diamonds, a jeweler should be able to provide a full GIA or AGS report that is verified by an engraved serial number on the diamond itself. Gold and silver can often be hollow or filled with nickel to make up for overall metal weight, you’ll want a certification for these metals as well along with seeing a stamp like 585 for 14K gold which tells you the overall gold content. If shopping online, ask to see multiple pictures from different angles, and feel free to ask for close-ups of any imperfections you may discover.
6. Fine Print
Be aware of the fine print when you’re buying jewelry, this can be a benefit if you ever need alterations or have an issue with what you purchased. Some retailers offer unlimited resizing on rings while others promise to replace your gems if they fall out of their settings, but you’ll want to comb over the paperwork before finalizing your purchase. Returning jewelry is often difficult so it is important to ask about their policy, in some cases, there’s a certain time frame where this can be done while others can buy back your precious metals at a discount, or outright refuse it.
7. Arrange Payment
If you’ve landed on that special piece of jewelry then you’re ready to pay, and what is the best way to do that? With such a big purchase you may want to use a credit card, but have you considered credit jewelers who have specific lines of credit for jewelry along with perks that almost anyone can qualify for? While cash will always remain king, sometimes a down payment in cash with the rest in credit can help make that engagement dream come true or allow you to buy that future family heirloom without breaking the bank. Again, check the terms of your purchase before signing anything, and use your best judgment to stick to your budget while getting the highest value possible.