How to sell silver for cash in 2021

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Silver is a naturally occurring white (or, well, silver) metal that is used to create jewelry, coins, and tableware or flatware. It’s also used extensively in electronics, due to its conductivity, and in pharmaceuticals, due to silver’s natural properties as an antibiotic.

What is the best way to get cash for silver?

Online silver buyers make it easy to get a quick quote for your silver jewelry, scrap, silverware, flatware or coins.

Top online silver buyers:

Silver prices are reaching record highs, much like gold. A reputable place to sell your silver jewelry, silverware, coins and silver scrap is CashforSilver, the sister site of CashforGoldUSA, which has an A+ Better Business Bureau rating, pays within 24 hours and guarantees the highest price, or will return your item with no questions, free of charge. 

Learn about other silver buyers.

How to sell your silver in 3 easy steps

Just as you might sell gold or platinum, you can sell silver in a number of ways. The most common of these is to bring your silver to a pawn shop, a silver exchange, a consignment shop, a local jeweler, or by using an online website. 

1. Check the markings on your silver to understand its quality.

Before selling your silver to anyone, though, it’s important that you understand the current going price for the metal so that you will not be ripped off. Typically, you’ll never get the exact spot price (the buyer needs to be able to make money reselling it, after all), but you can shop around to find the buyer who is willing to give you as much as possible for your metal.

Learn more about silver markings. Note that silver buyers typically only buy sterling, not plated silver items.

2. Check Kitco's silver price.

Kitco's exchanges provide a widely accepted market spot price for precious metals, including silver prices.

3. Seek a reputable buyer.

And read why we recommend using an online silver buyer.

What to expect when selling silver

How to sell silver flatware

Similar to selling jewelry (above), you can sell your silver flatware by either bringing it to a pawn shop, silver exchange, or leveraging an online buyer. Each of these buyers will pay you based on the purity and weight of the silver that you are exchanging; the purer and heavier your items, the more you will receive.

Silver flatware is often 90% silver, though that percentage can vary substantially. Silver-plated flatware will contain much less silver.

Again, though, it is worth noting that antique or collectible items may hold more value due to their craftsmanship or history. An appraiser or antique shop may be able to offer you guidance on this worth and may even purchase the items from you.

How and where to sell silver bullion

Silver bullion can be sold in the same places as silver jewelry, flatware, or coins. Pawn shops, silver exchanges, and online silver buyers like CashforGoldUSA will give you cash for your silver bullion.

Silver bullion is typically 99.9% pure silver.

CashforSilverUSA recently paid $4,290 for these fine silver bars:

CashforSilverUSA recently paid $4,290 for these fine silver bars.

How to sell silver coins

Silver coins can also be sold to pawn shops, silver exchanges, and online silver buyers, each of which will give you cash in exchange for your coins (based on the weight of the coin) and then proceed to melt them down. 

Most silver coins contain 90% silver.

Learn more about selling an inherited coin collection

CashforSilverUSA recently paid $300 for these silver American Eagles:

CashforSilverUSA recently paid $300 for these silver American Eagles.

This collection of Kennedy silver half dollar coins sold to CashforSilverUSA for $1,956:

This collection of Kennedy silver half dollar coins sold to CashforSilverUSA for $1,956,

How to sell sterling silver

Sterling silver consists of 92.5% silver, with the remaining 7.5% coming from another metal or metals. With this in mind, virtually all venues that buy pure silver would also be interested in purchasing your sterling silver. This includes pawn shops, metal exchanges, and online silver buyers such as our recommended choice, CashforSilverUSA.

How to sell silver jewelry

To sell your silver jewelry, you should start by following the same steps that you would for selling any silver:

  1. Check your silver jewelry for markings and weigh your item to determine how much silver it contains.
  2. Check current silver prices.
  3. Find a reputable buyer.

Who you sell your silver jewelry to will depend on a few factors. If the jewelry is by a famous designer, is an antique, or is truly unique, then it might have value as a collector's item. In these cases, a jewelry store or antique dealer can help you understand the value of your item and may even be willing to purchase it from you directly.

If your silver jewelry is mass-produced or simply does not have value outside of the silver it contains, then you will want to find a silver buyer. While you can go to a pawn shop or metal exchange, online silver buyers tend to offer the best prices. Our recommendation is CashforSilverUSA, which regularly outbids its competition and pays quickly.

How to sell jewelry — what you need to know to value your item.

How much is silver worth?

Silver is worth however much a buyer is willing to pay for it. This price typically varies from day to day, week to week, and month to month as the demand for silver increases or decreases. When demand is up, silver melt value goes up; when demand is down, silver is worth less.

Items that contain a large amount of silver will be worth much more than items that contain less silver. Silver that is stamped with the markings 950, 925, 900, 800, Sterling, or Coin all contain high amounts of silver and will be worth the most. Items marked Plate will be worth the least, as these items are not pure silver and only have a thin coat of silver on their outer layer.

This video goes into more detail about how to value silver:

Value of silver today—check the price of silver

August 10, 2021, Kitco silver prices closed at $23.33 per ounce, or roughly $0.75 per gram. This represents a 10.6% decrease in price over the course of the last 30 days, and a 19.6% drop in price over the last year.

Silver frequently asked questions

Below are some frequently asked questions about silver that can help you better understand whether you can and should sell your silver.

How much does silver sell for? What is the melt value of silver?

As with platinum and other precious metals, the price of silver can fluctuate widely. This is due to the fact that silver has two primary uses: As both a store of value and as an industrial commodity. While silver often trades in line with gold, silver melt value can be sensitive to industrial demand, rising during times of economic prosperity and falling when consumer demand falls. 

What silver is worth money?

All silver is worth money, but that doesn't mean you'll get a lot of money for any silver item. The purer your silver, the more you'll get for it. The markings that your silver is stamped with will tell you how much silver it contains. The most valuable silver will be stamped with one of the following markings:

  • 950: 95% silver
  • 925: 92.5% silver
  • Sterling: 92.5% silver
  • 900: 90% silver
  • COIN: 90% silver
  • 800: 80% silver

Silver plated items, on the other hand, do not contain a lot of silver and merely have a thin coat of the metal on top. These items are commonly marked with the stamp “PLATE” and are not worth much money.

What are 90% silver coins worth?

It's pretty easy to find out how much your 90% silver coin is worth. All you need to do is:

  1. Weigh your coin (in grams).
  2. Multiply that weight by .9 (since only 90% of the weight is silver). This number is how much silver, in grams, your coin contains.
  3. Find the spot price for a gram of silver.
  4. Multiply the number from Step 2 by the number in Step 3 and you'll have the value of your silver coin.

Dimes, quarters, half dollars, and dollars minted in the US in 1964 or before will contain 90% silver by weight, with the remaining 10% coming from copper. These coins are also known as “constitutional silver” or “junk silver.” Those same coins minted later do not contain 90% silver.

That being said, if your silver coin is rare, old, or otherwise has value as a collector's item, it may be worth more than you would get simply by melting it down for its silver content. There are many numismatic (coin collecting) websites where you can search for the value of your coin to determine if it has any collector's value.

Learn more about selling silver coins

How much is silver bullion worth?

Silver bullion is silver that is in the form of either coins, bars, ingots, or rounds. Like all other silver, its value or price is determined by its weight. 

How much is silver worth per gram?

As of August 10, 2021, Kitco silver prices closed at $0.75 per gram. This represents a 10.6% drop in price over the course of the last 30 days, and a 19.6% decrease in price over the last year.

How much is silver worth per ounce?

August 10, 2021, Kitco silver prices closed at $23.33 per ounce. This represents a 10.6% decrease in price over the course of the last 30 days, and a 19.6% drop in price over the last year.

Pricing silver today via a price for silver calculator

Do you currently own silver, whether in the form of jewelry, silverware, coins, or something else? So long as you know the weight (typically in ounces or grams) and the purity, you can use a silver price calculator that includes Kitco’s price for silver to determine the melt value of your silver. 

How to tell if silver is real

You can quickly determine if silver is real using a number of tests:

  • Does it have a hallmark or stamp? Commercially sold silver is legally required to carry these marks in most countries.
  • Is the item magnetic? Silver is a non-magnetic metal, so if your magnet sticks then the item is likely not made from silver.
  • Does it smell? Silver is an odorless metal, compared to others (like copper or iron) which can have a sometimes potent scent.
  • Is it rusted? While silver will tarnish, it will not rust.

What are silver markings?

Silver markings, called stamps or hallmarks are small marks left in silver objects by the silversmith who created the item. They are typically required by law for commercially sold silver goods. These marks indicate how much silver is in the metal (for example, 925 for sterling silver and 900 for coin silver). Sometimes, the markings may also indicate the region or country of origin.

How many grams are in an ounce of silver?

Silver is typically measured in something called a troy ounce, which is slightly heavier than a standard ounce (imperial ounce) used to measure a substance. This means that there are 31.10 grams of silver in a troy ounce, compared to 28.35 grams of silver in an imperial ounce.

Can you make money selling silver?

No matter the price of silver, you are almost guaranteed to always be able to find a buyer who will be interested in giving you cash for your metal. This means that yes, you can always make money by selling your silver — though the actual profits depend on how much you paid for your silver, and what the current market price is. 

When should I sell my silver?

In choosing when to sell your silver, timing is everything. 

Silver prices rise when there is increased demand for the metal, either because investors are fleeing riskier investments (such as stocks) and seeking safer investments, or because consumers are purchasing more items that require silver components. Silver prices typically fall, on the other hand, when investors seek growth, or when consumers are purchasing fewer items made out of silver. 

To get the most money for your silver, you should sell it when demand, and prices, are at their highest.

That said, if you have silver jewelry or flatware that you do not use or enjoy, selling it now for cash is better than those items cluttering your drawers. Money in hand now can be used to pay bills, invest, or otherwise enjoy. 

Get a free quote for your silver from CashforSilverUSA now >>

Frequently asked questions about selling sterling silver

Is it worth it to sell sterling silver? 

Yes! Sterling silver consists of 92.5% silver and 7.5% some other metal (often copper). As such, your sterling silver items can still be worth quite a bit of money, and are certainly worth selling. What’s the alternative—holding onto it and letting it clutter up your house? 

How much does sterling silver sell for? 

Sterling silver is worth 92.5% as much as pure silver, since that is how much pure silver sterling silver contains. To find out how much your sterling silver is worth, you will need to do a simple calculation:

  1. Find the weight of your sterling silver in ounces
  2. Multiply that weight by .925 to determine how much pure silver you have
  3. Multiply that number by the current price of pure silver (in ounces)

Note that in a flatware set, the knives' blades are typically stainless steel, while the handles may be solid sterling silver — so any payout will reflect that weight differential.

Similarly, candlesticks and other solid silver items will likely be silver plated around cork, clay or plaster, so that weight will be deducted from any silver weight.

How much do pawn shops pay for sterling silver?

As a rule of thumb, pawn shops will usually pay around 50% of the resale value of an item. That means that if you had $100 worth of sterling silver, you’d likely get around $50 for it from a pawn shop. While this can get you cash fast, you will usually find much better deals through online silver buyers, who often pay within a few days. 

Where can I sell my sterling silver Pandora bracelet?

Currently, Pandora does not have a buyback program. If you have an old silver Pandora bracelet or charms that you no longer want, you can sell them in the same ways that you might sell any other silver. Pawn shops, jewelry stores, and online silver buyers will all accept your Pandora items. 

Learn more about selling bracelets

Is it a good time to sell silver or sterling silver?

The price of silver peaked at $49.45 per ounce back in 1980 and came close to that number again during the Great Recession of 2007-2009, but that doesn’t mean that now isn’t a good time to sell your silver. The price of silver is currently higher than it has been throughout most of its history, even if it is not at its peak.

It’s important to remember that timing the exact top or bottom of any market is difficult, if not impossible. That means that there’s always the possibility that you could sell your silver today, only for the price to spike tomorrow. At the same time, you could sell it today only for the price to drop tomorrow. If you’re thinking about selling your silver, you have to accept this uncertainty as a part of life or you’ll go crazy. 

Bottom line: Should I sell my silver?

The answer to this question is a personal one. 

If the silver is in the form of a family heirloom, such as an antique or piece of jewelry, that you love and treasure and one day hope to pass on to your child, then you may want to think twice before selling it for cash. There are other ways that you can raise cash in a pinch if you need it.

If, on the other hand, the silver is in the form of broken jewelry, jewelry that you no longer wear or enjoy, or table/flatware that never sees the light of day, selling it can be a great way of removing clutter from your life and giving you cash that you can use to pay down your debt, put towards a home or your kids’ college fund.

Learn more about CashforSilver's parent company, CashforGoldUSA in this user review.

Wealthysinglemommy.com founder Emma Johnson is an award-winning business journalist, activist, author and expert. A former Associated Press reporter and MSN Money columnist, Emma has appeared on CNBC, New York Times, Wall Street Journal, NPR, TIME, The Doctors, Elle, 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. As an expert on divorce and gender, Emma presented at the United Nations Summit for Gender Equality and multiple state legislature hearings. More about Emma's credentials.

4 Comments

I have a service for 12 with numerous extra pieces of Old Master Towle silverware. I’m not sure what it’s worth and if it’s a good time to sell. It’s in excellent condition. I’d like advice on how to sell this, what the value of this silverware could be, and how to get the best price. Thank you

My mother left me silver bars when she passed. I don’t know where to begin to get top dollar for them or how long I should keep them.

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