How to Sell Damaged Gold Jewelry for Cash

By Kent Ninomiya

  • Overview

    Selling damaged gold jewelry for cash has become an popular way to make money. There is a huge quantity of old, out-of-style and broken gold jewelry gathering dust in drawers and closets around the world. Meanwhile, gold prices are high and there are more gold refiners than ever offering top dollar to melt it down to reclaim the gold inside.
    • Step 1

      Gather as much damaged gold jewelry as you can find. The more you have, the greater your bargaining power when you go to sell it. Remember, it doesn't matter if it is broken. It is going to be melted down anyway. Look through your own belongings and ask friends and relatives for their damaged gold jewelry. Visit garage sales and estate auctions. Offer to buy the damaged gold jewelry as a "lot" for a single low price. The key is to pay as little as possible to keep your profit margin high. As you work through these steps you will get a feel for how much you should pay for a "lot" of damaged gold jewelry.
    • Step 2

      Categorize the damaged gold jewelry by karat type. Use a magnifying glass to find the karats of each piece of damaged gold jewelry. This is usually stamped on the clasp or a small tag nearby. It is indicated by a number and the letter "K." Most gold jewelry is made in 10K, 14K, 18K or 22K gold. The higher the number, the greater the gold purity.


    • Step 3

      Find out how much each category of damaged gold jewelry weighs. If possible, use a jewelry scale. If you don't have access to one you can use a coin scale or postal scale. You can even use the one at the post office. It has to be sensitive enough to detect very slight changes in weight. Find out how much all your damaged 10K gold jewelry weighs, then your 14K, 18K and 22K. Write down each weight in ounces. If your scale only reads in grams, divide by 28.35 to get the ounces. If it only reads in pennyweight, divide by 18.23 to get ounces.
    • Step 4

      Calculate how much gold you have in each category. For the 10K category, multiply the weight in ounces by 0.417 to find the actual gold content. For 14K, multiply by 0.583. For 18K, multiply by 0.750. For 22K, multiply by 0.917. Add up the gold content for all the categories and you have your total gold content for the damaged gold jewelry lot.
    • Step 5

      Look up the spot price of gold. This is what gold is valued on a particular day. See Resources for a link to the spot price of gold. Many financial websites have this information. Multiply the spot price of gold in dollars per ounce by your total gold content in ounces. The total is the spot value of your damaged gold jewelry lot.
    • Step 6

      Shop around your damaged gold jewelry lot with gold refiners. The larger your lot, the more they will compete for your business. Gold refiners are all over the Internet. Only deal with those who clearly outline their fees and prices in writing. They will want you to send your damaged gold jewelry for inspection. This is safe, as long as you document and insure your package. The gold refiner will then make you an offer. Anything between 90 and 95 percent of the spot value price after fees is considered standard. If you are selling a lot of gold, hold out for more. If you don't like the offer, they will send back your shipment and you can try again with another company.
    • Skill: Moderately Easy
    • Ingredients:
    • Damaged gold jewelry
    • Magnifying glass
    • Jewelry scale

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