How to sell diamonds

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Before you sell your diamond, educate yourself about its value, the 4Cs, what to expect in terms of retail vs. resale price, where you can sell it safely to a reputable jewelry buyer, and where to get your diamond appraised.

Our No. 1 recommendation for selling your diamond is online site Worthy.com, which has an A+ Better Business Bureau rating, insures your item up t $100,000, and will give you an immediate estimate using its interactive tool.

What you need to know:

What is the best way to sell a diamond?

If you already know the answers to these questions, or are otherwise ready to sell your diamond jewelry or loose diamonds, our top places to sell are:

  • If your diamond is worth at least $1,000, or a .5 carat center stone, consider sending your jewelry to Worthy.com, which has an A+ Better Business Bureau rating, insures your item up t $100,000, and will give you an immediate estimate using its interactive tool.
  • If your item is worth less than $1,000, CashforDiamondsUSA will send door-to-door FedEx shipping, pay within 24 hours and gives a 10% bonus when you send in your diamond or jewelry within 7 days. CashforDiamondsUSA also has an A+ BBB rating and will match any other quotes you may receive from a diamond exchange, pawnshop or other online diamond or jewelry buyer.

Keep reading to learn about your diamond and what it is worth.

Is it a good time to sell diamonds?

While diamonds have historically held their value, in 2020, diamond prices did decline at both the wholesale and retail level. On one hand, you may choose to hold on to your diamond and sell in the event prices return, or you may choose to sell your diamond now before prices drop further.

On the other hand, there is the emotional aspect of jewelry that suggests that letting go of items that remind you of unhappy relationships makes it always a good time to sell your diamond jewelry. And you can always invest the money you earn in another investment that has a high return.

Read about my experience selling my engagement ring, including how I decided to sell, and what I used the money for >>

Is it easy to sell diamonds?

While diamonds sales can be intimidating and stressful, you can always walk into your local jeweler and see if he or she will buy your jewelry or loose diamond for cash. That is easy!

Selling a diamond engagement ring or other diamond online is just as easy since some of the top buyers send a FedEx mailer to your door for free, and overnight your item to their offices for evaluation, appraisal and quick payment. Also easy!

How can I sell my diamond for cash?

Traditionally, people interested in selling a diamond ring or jewelry went to a local, trusted jeweler, perhaps gathered a few quotes around town, and went with the best offer.

Today, you can still do that, but there are easier ways to ensure you get the highest price for your loose diamond or diamond ring, including to reputable online diamond and jewelry buyers like Worthy.com, which will give you an immediate estimate. CashforDiamondsUSA is also rated A+ with the Better Business Bureau and pays within 24 hours of receipt of your item.

Where can I sell a diamond near me?

Many people start their diamond-selling journey with local businesses near you. These might include:

  • A local jewelry store
  • Pawn shop or consignment shop
  • Diamond and gold exchange

If you want to start selling a diamond with a quote from a local, check out Yelp, ask friends, and search the Better Business Bureau for diamond buyers in your area. Bring all documentation for your item (like a GIA report), and never commit to a sale without a second opinion.

This post explains why you should sell your wedding ring, and how. This post will help you understand our recommendations for the best online diamond buyers.

Antiques from family are tricky, and there are a lot of factors to consider as you decide whether or not you should sell your heirloom and estate jewelry.

If you find yourself ready (like I did) to sell your diamond but wondering where to sell diamonds for the best price, this post is for you.

How do I sell my diamond near me for cash?

The quickest way to sell your diamond for the highest price is with CashforDiamondsUSA, which will send a mailer to your home, offer you a quote by email, and pay within 24 hours. CashforDiamonds will buy other items in your jewelry box (including a ring’s setting).

If you have a diamond you expect will sell for $1,000 or more, Worthy is also a great place to sell your diamond, pays within 24 hours and also has an A+ Better Business Bureau rating.

Do jewelers buy diamonds?

Yes, jewelers often buy loose diamonds, diamond rings and other jewelry — as well as provide insurance-replacement appraisals.

Do pawn shops buy diamonds?

Yes, pawn shops often buy diamond jewelry and loose diamonds, though typically for far below what a jeweler or online diamond buyer will pay.

How much can you sell a diamond for?

Typically, you will receive 50% or less for your diamond than you paid for it in the store at retail price. Below are some examples of recent diamond sales, compared with the retail price for similar stones.

Do diamonds have resale value?

In other words, Is a diamond a good investment?

In terms of money, the short answer is: No. You are not likely to see your diamond jewelry appreciate in value over time.

In fact, expect that the diamond resale price you receive at auction or from even a very reputable diamond buyer will be substantially lower than what you paid for it.

The reasons include:

  • Diamond buyers are really only interested in the center stone, which they can repurpose into other, more contemporary pieces of jewelry, or custom items for their clients.
  • The retail price you paid includes the design, smaller side stones, and the retail experience. A diamond wholesale buyer or diamond exchange will melt the metal down to scrap.

This video does a good job explaining why diamond resale value is lower than the price you paid for it:

That said, diamonds do have a vibrant resale market, and old jewelry, an engagement ring from a divorced marriage, or inherited estate jewelry can bring much-needed cash when sold to a reputable diamond buyer.

Learn about our top 5 diamond buyers here >>

How much my diamond is worth?

Ultimately, a single diamond is worth what someone is willing to pay you for it. In addition to getting your diamond appraised or reviewed by a laboratory. searching for similar, recent sales on eBay or other auction sites, you can get a sense of how much your diamond is worth by educating yourself about your gemstone and the current marketplace.

How much is a 2 carat diamond worth?

Again, diamond resale values are based on the size and quality of the center stone, not total carat weight of all the diamonds in the piece. 

Here are a few recent Worthy sales of rings with single center stones of approximately 2 carats:

2.02 carats cushion-cut solitaire ring, I color, SI2 clarity, sold at auction for $6,754

2.54 carats cushion-cut bridal set, J color, SI1 clarity, sold at auction for $8,827

2.01 carats round-cut, F color, SI1 clarity, sold at auction for $14,820

How much is a single 1-carat diamond worth?

The price you will receive for any diamond, no matter where you sell it, depends on many factors, including the size, clarity and cut of your diamond — as well as the market demand for your gemstone, as well as the honesty and integrity of the buyer!

It is also very important to keep in mind that the resale value of a diamond (or any fine jewelry) will be much less than what you paid for it, retail.

Typically, only the center stone of your ring or necklace will hold any significant resale value, and the surrounding gold or platinum, and small side stones are considered scrap, and will collect only the value of melting it.

Here is a recent retail diamond value chart for a single 1-carat, brilliant (round) loose diamond on BlueNile. Note the range for all qualities of 1-carat stones range from $2,473 to $12,317 for a perfect, colorless 1-carat diamond.

How much can I get for a 1 carat diamond? What is the price of a 1 carat diamond? Diamond value chart.

Note these are retail prices for loose, 1-carat diamonds. Resale prices will be much lower.

By comparison, here are some recent resale prices from online auction site Worthy.com:

How much you can get to resell 1 carat diamond online.

How much is a .5-carat diamond worth?

According to the same listing on BlueNile, half-carat loose diamond retail prices range from $634 to $2,746. If you sell via CashforGoldUSA, expect to get a few hundred dollars or less.

How much is a .25-carat diamond worth?

A high-quality quarter-carat diamond may retail between $500 and $1,000, but resale value will be about a third of those numbers.

Melee diamonds value: How much are tiny or small diamonds worth?

Resale diamond prices for a half-carat are much less, and often are sold based on their weight for hundreds of dollars or less. Sellers often find that the gold or platinum setting of a diamond ring is worth as much or more than the actual diamond.

What is a melee diamond? What size are melee diamonds?

Melee gemstones are very tiny diamonds that are commonly used as accents, or in pavé, halo and channel settings. Eternity bands often use melee diamonds.

The Gemological Institute of America (GIA) defines melee diamonds as those that are smaller than 0.2 carats. While this is the biggest melee diamonds get, though some can be as small as 0.001 carats.

Melee diamonds are usually cut the same way as larger brilliant cut diamonds with 57-58 facets — also known as a full cut. A single-cut melee diamond has just 17 cuts, but is not very common.

What are melee diamonds worth?

A full carat’s worth of melee diamonds is worth between $200 and $1,000, depending on the size and quality.

Diamond accents: Are diamond accents worth anything?

What is an accent stone?

Accent stones on an engagement ring or other piece of fine jewelry are simply the smaller side stones complimenting the larger center stone. Accent stones are often melee diamonds, but not always. They

Are accent stones fake?

There certainly are fake accent stones, but a reputable jeweler will be transparent about the materials of any jewelry she sells you.

How much is a chipped diamond worth?

If your diamond is small — less than .5 carats — a chipped diamond is not worth much. However, larger diamonds, especially those that are high-quality, may be of interest to a diamond buyer who believes they can recut the diamond into a gem they can sell for a profit. However, the price they will offer you will be less than if the diamond is not chipped, of course.

Understand what your diamond is worth before you sell

Grading and valuing a diamond is a complex process, one that requires a professional expert and benefits from sophisticated laboratory technology.  That said, there are some basic tools and terms that anyone can use to make sure they understand any price quoted for their diamonds, and help you understand what your diamond is worth.

Diamond value calculator?

While there are accurate online calculators for gold, silver and other precious metals, there is no such thing as an accurate diamond value calculator, because there is no diamond exchange — or central location where diamonds are bought and sold.

If you are interested in selling a diamond, the price of diamonds is best understood through measurements of the 4 C’s, and by being evaluated by a respected laboratory, such as GIA, which uses both industry-specific equipment, and recent sales data, to estimate a sales price range for your item. A runner-up would be a GIA-certified jeweler who can inspect and offer a price.

Diamond value estimator

Worthy’s interactive estimating tool will give you a very good idea of how much you might sell your diamond for.

How to get diamonds valued

If you have a GIA or other lab report, that is a huge first step in valuing your diamond since you know the 4 C’s of your gemstone, and can look up recent sales on Worthy.com, or eBay.

If not, you can take your diamond to a jeweler for an appraisal, send it to a lab for a report yourself, or get an estimate at Worthy for free.

Keep reading to learn:

  • Tricks to tell if a diamond is real
  • About the 4 C’s of diamonds
  • Steps to get your diamond appraised

What’s the difference between real and fake diamonds? How to tell if a diamond is real

While a microscope can definitively determine whether a diamond is real, here are a few tricks to know whether you have a fake diamond:

  • Drop the stone into a glass of water. If it floats, it is fake. A real diamond will sink.
  • Use the fog test: Blow a warm breath on the stone. If it fogs for a few seconds, it is a fake, as a real diamond will disperse the fog quickly.
  • Heat the stone with a lighter, then drop into a glass of cold water. A fake diamond will shatter, while a real diamond — one of the strongest materials on Earth — will resist very extreme temperatures.
  • Check the setting. If your diamond is set in a piece of jewelry, the materials of that ring, earrings or bracelet are probably high-quality, including gold, white gold, or platinum.

Do you have gold jewelry to sell? What you need to know to get the most price for gold coins, jewelry and scrap.

Moissanite diamond: Is moissanite worth anything?

Moissanite is a naturally occurring material, though almost all of what you see in the marketplace is made in a laboratory.

Moissanites are often cut exactly as you would cut a diamond and set in rings and other jewelry settings. They are far less expensive, and the retail price of a 1-carat moissanite is typically $100, with the buyback value far less.

Is a moissanite diamond a real diamond?

The difference between moissanite and diamond is that a moissanite is not a real diamond. Moissanites, like diamonds, are brilliant and beautiful, and extremely hard (though not as hard as a diamond), though a skilled eye can tell the difference between the two.

However, there are diamonds that are grown in a laboratory — those are worth far more than a moissanite, but less than a real diamond of similar quality and size.

Does the cut (shape) of diamond affect price?

4 C’s of diamonds

The 4 C’s are a well-recognized foundation for measuring the quality and value of your diamond. A diamond value chart is helpful.

Color

The color of gem-quality diamonds occurs in colors ranging from completely colorless (the rarest of diamonds), to shades of yellow (also called “canary diamonds) and brown (“cognac diamonds”).  Colorless diamonds are the rarest. Rare, “fancy” diamonds that are naturally blue, red, and pink are graded on their own, separate scale.

Clarity

Diamonds usually have internal flaws called inclusions, or external characteristics known as blemishes. Diamonds without inclusions or blemishes are rare; however, most characteristics can only be seen with magnification. This is the diamond clarity scale from the American Gem Society:

4 Cs diamond clarity

Carat

The carat is the diamond’s physical weight measured in metric carats. One carat equals 1/5 gram and is subdivided into 100 points. Carat weight is the most objective grade of the 4Cs.

Cut

Cut is simply the way the cutter cut the diamond, and the skill and precision of the cutter’s work. The more precise the cut, the more beautiful the diamond is to look at.

In the 4 C’s, cut refers to the precision with which a stone is faceted by the diamond cutter. However, the cut also denotes to the shape of the diamond — and some shapes are more popular, and more valuable than others.

Here is a chart of shapes and prices for different, popular diamond shapes with similar characteristics, from BlueNile. It will help you understand the value and worth of round/brilliant diamonds, princess (square), emerald (rectangle), and marquis diamonds, and other cuts.

Which diamond cut holds its value?
- How much is a round diamond worth?
- How much is a princess diamond worth?
- How much is an emerald diamond worth?
- How much is a round diamond worth?
- How much is a baguette diamond worth?
- How much is a trillion cut diamond worth?

Many often also want to know how much a baguette, or trillion cut diamond is worth?

A baguette diamond is a long, 14-facet diamond typically used as an accent or side stone on a solitaire ring, or as part of an eternity band, while a trillion is a triangle-shape used as a side-stone in a piece of fine jewelry. Each of these shapes are typically not worth more than a few hundred dollars, though a larger trillion of high quality can be worth more.

How to get a diamond appraised

Appraisers use the 4 C’s, and the age and resale value of estate or antique jewelry. The National Association of Jewelry Appraisers can recommend members in your area, so you can make an appointment to have your diamonds appraised.

Some jewelers will do this for free, but you may also be charged a flat fee, an hourly rate (expect $50 to $150 per hour), or possibly a portion of the appraised value. Some pawn shops and diamond exchanges also offer jewelry appraisals.

“Appraising” is not the same thing as “grading,” which involves a laboratory report from the GIA or the IGI.

These are internationally known, independent laboratories, equipped with expert gemologists and the latest technology with which they measure, grade and offer a market price range based on recent sales. Gemological laboratories are the most trusted lab reports in the world, and will cost you around $200 for a 1-carat diamond ring, with the price going up based on diamond size.

Learn more about jewelry appraisals.

The online diamond buyer Worthy works with the GIA and IGI to offer lab reports. Read my review of Worthy, including my experience using the online jewelry auction.

For another reputable online jewelry buyer, read my WP Diamond review.

Wealthysinglemommy.com founder Emma Johnson is an award-winning business journalist, activist and author. A former Associated Press reporter and MSN Money columnist, Emma has appeared on CNBC, New York Times, Wall Street Journal, NPR, TIME, The Doctors, MONEY, O, The Oprah Magazine. Winner of Parents magazine’s “Best of the Web” and a New York Observer “Most Eligible New Yorker," her #1 bestseller, The Kickass Single Mom (Penguin), was a New York Post Must Read. A popular speaker, Emma presented at the United Nations Summit for Gender Equality. Emma's Top Single Mom Resources.

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