Treasure Hunting: What to Look For On Jewelry

Have you ever been at a Garage Sale, or Yard Sale and found jewelry and didn’t know if it is valuable? Have you ever been to a thrift store, consignment shop, resale shop, or even Goodwill?

What do I look for and where do I look for markings on jewelry?

How would I get cash for it?

When you look at a necklace, for instance, look at the tag or the clasp. Look for 24k, 18k, 14k, 10k, or.925. If they show any of this, it has value.

If it has a pendant or charm, look on the back. Look on the inside of a ring or bracelet. For earrings, look on the edge or the post. Also, look for an unusual clasp or safety. Check these out real well. Ususlly if you cannot find anything significant, it probably isn’t worth anything. If you lean toward thinking it is go ahead and buy it if it is cheap. You can take it to a jeweler and see if it is worth anything.

If you look often, you will need to get a magnifier, or a loupe. The easiest kind would be the kind you hold up to your eye. Bausch and Lamb Hastings Triplet Lounge is a popular one. They are easily ordered on Amazon or other websites. just search Hastings 10x. You want to get 10x. They do sell more powerful magnifiers, but they are difficult to see because they are so magnified.

K is for gold and C is for gemstones. LOOK FOR: Valuable markings on jewelry are listed in GREEN.

* PLATINUM, (the most valuable) Plat, 950, pt950, PLAT, PT, 950 Plat, 950pt Also, 900 Platinum is 90% pure platinum. 900 Plat, Plat 900, pt900, or 900pt.

*GOLD, right now is around $1400.00 an OUNCE,(3-17-11). 24 Karat gold is PURE gold. It is soft and probably won’t find it on jewelry.

22k is 91.6%gold. 916 917

18k, or 75% gold. 750 18kp

14k or 53.8% gold. 585 or 14kp.

10k or 41.6% pure gold. 417, 16, or 10kp.

*STERLING SILVER, is 92.5% silver. 925, or.925. A silver dollar 1964 or before is usually about 90% silver. Right now silver is around $34.00 an ounce, (3-17-11) Don’t forget to look for these numbers on silverware, tea sets, platters, and other silver products. It is usually located on the bottom. A lot of silverware is plated which is not worth much. If you find something with one of these silver markings, and especially if it is heavy, you may make some money. I recently bought a spoon for.25. I took it to a jewelry exchange and he offered me $10.00 for it. I didn’t sell it to him. I want to check around a little until I find one that I will take all my treasures to. Many times coin dealers also exchange silver, gold, and platinum for cash. Call around or search internet for a place near you. Instead of driving around and using a lot of gas, be thrifty and call and get a price for the silver, gold, or platinum, you are wanting to sell. Some places give more per ounce than others. BEWARE of silver made in MEXICO. They do not have the strict regulations that we do. Many times it is not really silver. I bought a silver bracelet with.925 stamped on it from a Thrift or resale shop. I brought it to a reputable jeweler and the lady told me to watch out for Mexican sterling silver. And, it was, FAKE. Oh well, it was from a resale shop; I only paid $3.00 for it.