Posts Tagged 'selling my diamond ring'

Diamond Déjà-vu

Written by Anne Johnson, 
Managing Director at MJ Gabel

Three times last week I felt like I was having déjà-vu. That feeling like you have already been somewhere before, or had a similar conversation but you cannot place it. I quickly realized that it was not déjà-vu but rather I actually was having the same conversation multiple times. They all went something like this:

Anne – “Can you give me an idea of the amount you would like to see out of your diamond?”

Client – “ I did not have an exact figure in mind, but I know what the diamond is worth because of what I paid for it, and it was appraised for even more than that.”

This seems to be one of the most common conversations I have with clients and where I happily began to give all three clients an insight into the diamond market.

If you were to sell your current vehicle, what would you do to determine what price to ask for it? Would you just go by what you paid for it, take 50% off that price and hope for the best? Or would you do some research into what a realistic number would be to be competitive in the market?

Most would use the prices of other cars for sale locally as a guide as well as looking at the Kelly Blue Book value to find an estimate.  The problem with re-selling a diamond is that while there is a similar reference guide to the Kelly Blue Book for diamonds, it is not available to the public. This leaves only two numbers that consumers know about their pieces; the price they paid for it, and how much the piece was appraised for.

The problem with both of those numbers is that they are retail values. An appraisal value is only reflective of what the diamond is worth in a retail environment and NOT representative of what an individual could assume to sell the piece for. Moreover, as discussed in previous posts, the retail value of a diamond includes all of the jewelers mark-ups, and profit but when you go to sell that diamond, you are only working with the value of the stone itself.

So how is someone supposed to know what a realistic asking price for his or her diamond would be? The simple answer is to call MJ Gabel and speak to one of our representatives who will happily consult with you FREE OF CHARGE!

In order to get a feel for what similar pieces are currently priced and and to start to become familiar with the resale marketplace; here are some observations.

Number one: Go to Bluenile.com and find a diamond similar to the one you own by using their diamond search. Blue Nile is the largest e-retailer of certified diamonds. Their price points are lower than any brick and mortar jeweler, and only slightly higher than wholesale prices. This would be the equivalent of finding out what car dealers are asking for your car.

A good starting asking price for your diamond would be about 30% below the BlueNile price. This is because although BlueNile prices are less than those of your local jeweler, they are still retail prices.

Number two: Look at what other people are trying to sell their similar diamonds for on places like Craigslist – Check out your competition!

I speak with many clients who have already gone to a local jeweler only to find that the jeweler is uninterested in purchasing the diamond, will only give the client a trade value towards new jewelry or whose cash offer is insultingly low. On the other hand, on more than one occasion I have had this conversation:

Client: “My jeweler told me my diamond was worth XYZ”

Anne: “Is XYZ what the jeweler offered to purchase the diamond from you for?”

Client: “No, they do not buy back diamonds.”

As discussed in previous Blogs, the reason why many jewelers choose not to buy diamonds back from the public is because they would have to disclose their own mark-ups. Consider this in light of the numbers jewelers throw around; they are in the business of selling jewelry and are the ones who made between 200-400% profit on the original sale of your diamond. Therefore, unless the price they quote you is what they will actually purchase the diamond for, it is irrelevant. Always make sure they are specific, that the price is a cash offer and that it is:

NOT what they think you can sell the diamond for

NOT what they would sell the diamond for

NOT what they would appraise the diamond for

Diamonds are forever may be true; regardless of what the jeweler may lead you to believe, diamonds are not a good investment. Unfortunately you may never be able to recoup the full amount you paid for the diamond. In order to get the most back from your diamond, do your research. Know not only what you have, but also what a realistic amount to expect is going to be. Consultations and answers to questions are ALWAYS available at MJ Gabel.  It will only cost you the time it takes for a phone conversation, or to type an email to obtain information that could mean the difference of thousands of dollars in your pocket. MJ Gabel is always available to help clients navigate the diamond industry, and to recoup the maximum amount from the sale of their diamond.

If you are unaware of what your diamonds characteristics are, contact MJ Gabel and take advantage of a free diamond evaluation.

www.MJGabel.com

800-804-1980

 

Louis Vuitton vs Target

Louis Vuitton vs Target..

Successful brand names can help create an allure and the idea of high quality. A woman may choose to pay more for a leather handbag because it carries the name “Louis Vuitton” or she may choose to purchase a specific line of hair care products because she’s “worth it”.  Branding can help to distinguish products from their competitors while also creating the idea of consumer confidence. This is also a good way to increase profits as often times consumers are often willing to pay more for a name they know, recognize, and equate with high value or status.

Diamonds are no different. Is a “Leo” diamond better than a “Hearts on Fire”? And is either better than a GIA graded diamond with an Excellent cut, but no brand name? The idea of marketing a “brand-name” diamond is not a new concept, and is centered on simply a specific combination of proportions that were used to cut the diamond. When light interacts with a diamond, every angle, proportion and facet affects what is returned to the viewer’s eye – this is what gives a diamond a face-up appearance.

As shown above, these basic parts all have a relationship with each other, and their basic proportions in combination to the precision of the diamond’s facets are contributing to the interaction between the diamond and light. The bottom line is this, that every facet, every angle and their relationship to each other affect amount of light returned or lost in a diamond.

The majority of diamond brands focus on and promote the idea of an “ideal” cut diamond.  The claim is that their specific proportions create the maximum amount of fire (flashes of color seen within a diamond) and brilliance (reflections of white light).  For example, the “Leo” diamond is one that has 66 facets rather than the standard 57-58 of a Round Brilliant, while the “Hearts on Fire” diamond has “hearts and arrows” that can be seen in the table down position. Do the extra facets create a more brilliant diamond? What is more likely to create the most brilliance is a diamond with proportions that fall within certain limits, and all well cut diamonds will display “hearts and arrows,” not just the ones that are branded as such.

Modern diamond cutters have made an attempt to derive the “best” table size, pavilion angle, and crown angle for a Round Brilliant. They argue that the values of these three proportions will produce the most fire and brilliance in a diamond. While there are agreed upon standards for a well cut diamond, there is no positive proof that any one set of proportions will produce an “ideal” cut stone.

GIA (the Gemological Institute of America) does not recognize an “ideal” cut, but rather has created a standard cut grading system. This system assigns a cut grade as determined by that specific diamond’s proportions and the amount of fire, brilliance and scintillation or pattern the diamond displays: Excellent (Ex), Very Good (VG), Good (G), Fair (F), and Poor (P).

In addition to a cut grade, GIA also assigns a grade to the diamond’s overall finish. That grade describes its polish and symmetry as a reflection of the craftsmanship that went into the stone. Using the same scale from Excellent to Poor. These two grades combined reflect how much fire and brilliance a diamond displays.

Keep in mind that like the rest of the retail market, a brand name diamond may be more expensive even thought is the same grade as all the others on the shelf. What is important to understand is that not all diamonds are created equal and how well a diamond is cut has a large impact on its beauty. Remember, a diamond that is GIA certified as having an Excellent cut will shine, fire, and sparkle just as much as one that carries a brand name.

Every diamond is cut with extreme care and craftsmanship. Every facet in a well-cut diamond acts as a tiny mirror that interacts with the light to help create the stone’s face-up appearance. Two 1.00 carat diamonds with equal clarity and color characteristics set side by side both with Excellent cut grades will both display equal amounts of light. The only difference may be that one may have a brand name, and carry a higher price tag.

 

 

Be sure to check out www.mjgabel.com

If you are  selling a loose or mounted diamond get in touch with us and take advantage of our free consulting.

MJ Gabel Diamond Ring Buyers: 800-804-1980

 

References

“About the 4Cs.” About the 4Cs. Gemological Institute of America, 2012. Web. 02 Aug. 2012. <http://www.gia.edu/lab-reports-services/about-the-4cs/index.html>.

“Features.” Unsurpassed Diamond Brilliance. Leo Schachter Diamonds, LLC, 2012. Web. 02 Aug. 2012. <http://www.theleodiamond.com/theleodiamond/unsurpassedbrilliance.aspx>.

“The Cut Of Our Diamonds.” Diamond Story. N.p., 2012. Web. 02 Aug. 2012. <http://www.heartsonfire.com/learn-about-our-diamonds/the-story/the-cut.aspx>.

When a Diamond Isn’t Forever

MJ Gabel specializes in personal attention. We are a family owned and operated business that specializes in appraising, purchasing, and evaluating loose or mounted diamonds. MJ Gabel believes in the importance of being simple, the beauty of uniqueness, and the details of the process.

Our diamond obsession has shed light on two other additional, yet equally important crushes;
1) working with clients so they understand the process of selling their diamond and 
2) the personal connection involved in the process, and the customer feeling valued

In a world full of big-box, all the glitters, and fast cash promotions, MJ Gabel dares to hold true to a slower, simpler pace of doing business. This pace values the importance of educating the consumer and the human connection involved in your diamond.

Our company provides a service that can be brought directly to you, in the comfort of your own home, one of our offices, or by securely sending us your diamond. We offer the opportunity to help make you an informed decision when it comes to selling your diamond.

We understand the value of your pieces, and respect the importance of feeling valued as a customer. It can be intimidating to bring valued family heirlooms, treasures rings, or anything of significance to a commercial location to have someone behind a counter discuss their worth. When working with MJ Gabel, the consumer is educated every step of the way and each diamond is looked at with great care, and evaluated for its highest value.

If you are looking for an inclusive experience when selling a diamond, you have come to the right place. Let us show you that you can sell with confidence without leaving wondering, “Did I do the right thing?”

Fancy Cut Diamonds: Beauty is in the eye of the beholder

Fancy Cut Diamonds: Beauty is in the eye of the beholder

Written by Anne Johnson, Managing Director at MJ Gabel

It seems that everywhere one turns there are new colors your supposed to wear this summer, the hottest shoes seen in store everywhere, right down to the newest engagement ring design Angelina Jolie is sporting. When it comes down to it though, these products only carry value if someone finds them appealing. The same bright orange shirt that looks amazing on one person may make another look like a pumpkin.

The same game applies to Fancy cut diamonds, or “fancies”. A fancy cut diamond is any shape other than a round brilliant and includes popular cuts like princess, marquise, emerald, radiant ect,. Many times jewelers will use Fancy shapes as an alternative to a round brilliant if the buyer is looking for something less traditional. Fancy cuts have their own unique beauty, and often carry eye-catching appeal to many. However, the same individual who prefers a pear shaped diamond may not like the look of a radiant cut. This is where fancies start to get tricky.

Since round brilliant cut diamonds have traditionally been the most sought after, recognized, and methodically cut they hold a much higher value than fancies. There are specific industry standards, and agreements in regards to what measurements, angles, and proportions produce the most brilliant rounds. Factors used to evaluate and assess round brilliants are quite precise, however with fancy cuts there are many more variations to keep in mind.

When someone grades a fancy cut they look at the same types of things they do for rounds- color, clarity, symmetry ect. However, unlike rounds there is no universal agreement about what makes a specific fancy cut beautiful: it is a matter of personal taste. For example, an emerald cut that is an elongated rectangle may appear too narrow and long for one individual, but elegant and slender to another.

The beautiful individuality that is associated with fancy cuts is also what can make them a challenge to sell. The ever changing past and present trends of the jewelry industry can also pose a challenge to a seller of a fancy cut. For example, marquise cut diamonds became quite popular in the 1970’s and while still available, their popularity and demand has declined, impacting their re-sale value.

If you have a fancy cut you are trying to sell, it is important to keep in mind that while the beauty of the fancy cut diamond is obvious to you, there may be difficulty in finding someone who feels the same; pricing the diamond appropriately can help. This can also lead to a long waiting game, which ultimately could never result in a sale. Often times our clients find it better to re-circulate their fancy cut stones directly back into the market rather than waiting for the perfect private buyer to come along.

While Angelina Jolie may adore the emerald cut diamond that now adorns her finger, others may look at it with distaste. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, and nothing is more apparent than with fancy cut diamonds. Trends within the diamond industry will continue to change with the times; the only trend that has and will not receded is the beauty, elegance, sophistication, and desire of a diamond.

MJ Gabel

www.mjgabel.com

800-804-1980

Selling a Fancy Cut Diamond

The reveal of a Diamond Appraisal…

The reveal of a Diamond Appraisal…

Written by Anne Johnson, Managing Director at MJ Gabel

Many diamonds today come with handy paperwork known as an appraisal. It is explained to many that the dollar amount on the appraisal is the “value” of your diamond. It is important to understand fully what an appraisal is for, and what the value of the appraisal represents when it comes time to sell your diamond.

An appraisal of a diamond is like any other appraisal done on a piece that carries value and may be covered under ones insurance. The appraised amount of a diamond is one that has been assigned to the piece in the event that it needs to be replaced.  In other words it is a slightly inflated reflection of the retail value of the piece.  If the diamond was lost, stolen, damaged and it was covered under one’s insurance, the appraisal amount is what would be covered. Consumers must keep in mind that the appraisal amount of their diamond is really only beneficial under these circumstances.

The resale and liquidation values are more important to keep in mind when selling a diamond. A resale value is one that a consumer could expect to receive from a private buyer. This is an individual who is looking for a diamond that you may have. This person understands how much they would expect to pay for the diamond in a retail setting, and therefore is willing to pay below the retail price, but above the liquidation price of a diamond.

A liquidation value of a diamond is one that represents what the polished diamond is actually worth within the diamond marketplace. As discussed in previous articles, diamonds go through various phases before reaching the retail counter. These are the mining, production, sorting, cutting/polishing, distribution/wholesale, and retail phases. The diamond’s value increases as it climbs through each step. The liquidation value refers to the diamond’s worth at the cutting/polishing phase. This is the typical amount one could expect to receive from a jeweler or pawn shop for their diamond.

At MJ Gabel, we have the ability to give amounts to our customers that are reflective of the distribution/wholesale phase of the diamond pipeline. This is why our amounts are higher than a jeweler. Our ability to give a more competitive amount is directly related to our belief that the consumer should get as mush as the market will command for their diamond.

Keep in mind that between the phases of distribution and retail is where the majority of profit is made on a diamond, which goes directly to the jewelers. This is a rough breakdown reflected in billions of dollars of the diamond pipeline.

( “The Conflict-Free Diamond Council,” 2009)

It is clear to see that the highest potential for profit remains in the retail sales portion of the pipeline. When you go to sell your diamond, unfortunately you cannot ask the new buyer to pay for the profits you originally paid the jeweler.

Most individuals recognize that while diamonds may never be worth exactly what they paid for them, often times they rely of the values and amounts they are told their diamond is worth at the time of purchase per their appraisal paperwork. It can be difficult to walk straight in a hazy cloud of retail values, appraisal values, liquidation values and everything in between. This is why at MJ Gabel we do our best to educate the consumer the entire way through the process, and help to obtain the highest amounts possible for our client’s diamonds.

References

O’Neill, Sean. “Clicks & STONES.” Kiplinger’s Personal Finance 60.2 (2006): 102-105. Academic Search Alumni Edition. Web. 28 Feb. 2012.

“The Conflict-Free Diamond Council.” The Conflict-Free Diamond Council. 2004-2009. Web. 03 Apr. 2012. <http://www.conflictfreediamonds.org/home.html&gt;.

MJ Gabel

www.mjgabel.com

800-804-1980

Taking a Step Back


Written by Anne Johnson, Managing Director at MJ Gabel

In our previous blog posts, I have written mostly about the process and mechanics behind the diamond industry. Truths about the actual value of diamonds, as well as how they reach their price tag value by the time they reach a woman’s finger. While our website sheds light onto our massive crush on diamonds and personal interaction with clients, I thought I would take the time to explain why we are different than other companies. Let’s spell it out.;

I often use a car analogy when speaking of diamonds because it is often the easiest for most people to relate to, so humor me once again. If you are in the market for a new car, you go to a car dealership and someone who specialized in selling cars- they do not make the cars, or for that matter buy them back (unless it’s a trade), sells one to you. Many times consumers will do LOADS of research on the right car for them, and how and where to get the best price.

Jump a few years, and it’s time to upgrade or your just ready for a change. You may opt not to take the car to the dealer because you know they a) will not buy it back with cash and b) if you trade it in, you will take a massive hit. Your choice becomes selling it on your own, or trading it and taking less for it than both you and them know its worth.

Most people do not do nearly as much research on how to sell their used car, as what they put into finding the best price when purchasing it. If we were in the car business, this is where we would come in! Even though our love is diamonds, we can still apply this same scenario to the diamond marketplace.

The majority of individuals do not to nearly as much research on diamonds as they do with cars before they buy. In fact, the majority of customers know very little about their diamond when they buy it, and only when it comes time to sell it does the research begin. Like a car, consumers know what they paid for their diamond. This becomes usually one of two pieces of weaponry in their knowledge arsenal. The second piece is an appraisal that has been done on their diamond. With these two numbers in mind, most consumers believe that they must be able to get at least half or more of these two values.

In contrast to selling a car, the jeweler is often the first place a consumer might stop to sell their diamond back. Like a car dealer however, the jeweler really only sells diamonds, and their offers tend to be similar to a trade in value since they will need to make a profit again if they buy the diamond back. Thus, individuals tend to travel around looking for what different sources will offer them for their pieces. They hear a low number, and move on to the next stop.

This is precisely where we differ from others. Instead of just giving you a number, we walk you through exactly how we came up with that number. We take the time to illustrate for our customers how every aspect of their diamond has played a role in the price we have calculated. In addition, instead of just shooting a low offer out, we are happy to give you alternatives if we believe we can help you get more for the piece. The value of the stone is nothing compared to the consumer feeling valued as a client and that their best interest is our priority.

In the car market, consumers utilize Kelley Blue Book, or Edmunds as a resource to tell them what their car’s value is and what they can expect to get for it. We are to diamonds what those companies are to cars! The only difference is, we value the connection you have to the piece, how much you spent on it, the importance of educating the consumer, and the basic human interaction involved in selling it. The other difference is, unlike Edmunds or KBB, with MJ Gabel we will pay you the price we acknowledge your piece to be worth, or happily broker a transaction that will.

MJ Gabel / Diamond Buyers

www.mjgabel.com

800-804-1980

Diamonds Are Forever, But is their Value?

Diamonds Are Forever, but is their Value?

            Written by Anne Johnson, Managing Director of MJ Gabel

 

Diamonds; they are the quintessential representation of value, wealth, luxury, strength, sparkle, and beauty. According to De Beers Consolidated Mines Company of South Africa, “A Diamond is Forever”(De Beers, 2011). These four words seem to have capsulated the retail diamond industry and are responsible for planting a misconceived idea of a diamond’s value.

Diamonds are one of the hardest natural materials found on earth, which makes them unique in their own right. Not to mention a rough diamond can be cut, faceted, and polished to give extraordinary light reflection that is difficult to match. Diamonds do in fact take millions of years to create, and thus a diamond really is forever.

During the 1940’s The DeBeers Company (the near-monopoly sized company who still dominates and controls the majority of the diamond market) cleverly linked the longevity and strength of a diamond as the never-ending symbol of love with its slogan “a diamond is forever” (Cockburn, 2002). The company was able to intertwine the product with an emotion, and create the ultimate idea of ever-lasting love and eternal value. This phrase intends the consumer to believe that a diamond will always hold its worth. What DeBeers and other diamond companies fail to mention is that while a diamond will never be worth nothing, it will also never be worth what you originally paid for it.

Diamonds do not come out of the mine looking as beautiful as they do in the jewelry store, and a lot of sweat goes into creating the sparkle defined in the stone. All of the costs that go into the mining, creation, distribution, marketing, transporting, and selling of these stones gets transferred onto the consumer. Take this as an example:

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