For many people, buying a loose diamond is a huge monetary investment and a good jeweler can make or break the purchase. I know you had probably heard this for the millionth time about the need to be smart when working out a deal and that’s what I’m going to show you here.
Regardless of whether you choose to work with a local jeweler or an online vendor, here are some tips that will help you make the most out of your purchase.
Whether you are buying diamonds for aesthetic or financial reasons, the minimum requisite is that you need to have a basic knowledge of how diamonds are graded and described. I encourage you to read up on the four main characteristics: “color“, “carat“, “cut“, and “clarity” in the corresponding section of our website.
Once all these factors become clear to you, you will be in a better position to make better choices when browsing through the inventory any vendor. The benefits of pre-education are two-fold. Instead of listening to erroneous sales pitches in local stores, you would also have an easier time with selecting the best diamond suited to your own needs.
Even though diamonds are often associated with enhancing the wearer’s beauty and accentuating social statuses, they aren’t only bought for the sake of wearing them. Did you know that diamonds have one of the most stable prices and can be considered a better investment than other types of jewelry or real estate?
If you do not intend to wear them and you only treat them as an alternative to cash, buying loose diamonds might be a viable idea over buying a mounted diamond. What you need to be aware is that buying for investment purposes would require a different thought process compared to buying one for consumer needs.
For example, small diamonds (< 1 carat) are really bad investment choices as they don’t increase in value as much as the larger diamonds do overtime.
We all share a natural skepticism when we have to exchange money for goods virtually. In the case of jewelry, this skepticism becomes rather intense since we are speaking of transactions worth thousands of dollars.
Let me put the undue worries to rest and offer an analogy to explain this.
I’m sure you won’t walk into any roadside stalls to make a diamond purchase. Likewise, you shouldn’t make any purchase online haphazardly because it is basic common sense. Checking for the usual ratings on BBB, policies, secure servers (https) or reading other consumer reviews are good steps to take when selecting a reliable vendor.
If you want to save yourself time and the effort of vetting a vendor, work with the list of online diamond vendors we recommend. They have been in business for more than a decade and have worked with hundreds of thousands of customers. In order to make it to our list, we had hand-picked them based on their service standards as well as competitive pricing.
• Ask the jeweler whether the diamond comes with a report from one a trusted grading lab like GIA or AGS. I need to highlight this point that you should only consider diamonds with an accompanying report. This is because a reliable report gives a true, independent evaluation of the diamond you are buying.
• Ask them what kind of jewelry they specialize in – whether it’s loose diamond, gemstones, metal rings, etc.
• How long has the jeweler been in the business, particularly in the diamond selling business? You will want to think twice before buying from someone who has been in business for just 3 months.
• Also ask them whether they offer a written money back guarantee and what the specific terms are. Typically, most companies have a minimum of 10 days inspection period (better companies offer longer periods like 30-60 days) so that you can have sufficient time to look at the diamond in person. This money back guarantee period also gives you the time to have the diamond evaluated by an independent gemologist of your choice should you need a professional’s opinion.
• Advertisements that market loose diamonds for sale are rarely to be of high quality. In the jewelry industry, paying more doesn’t necessarily guarantee better quality. However, you can be assured of garbage quality with prices that are too good to be true.
The general guidelines for purchasing online are also applicable when it comes to buying in a brick and mortar store. Here are some additional pointers that would help you out.
• Inquire whether the jeweler has a microscope and ask if you can view the stone under magnification tools. Rather than using a loupe, a binocular microscope is easier to use and less straining on your eyes.
• Check whether the store has an in-house certified gemologist that can readily address your concerns.
• Can they prove the color grading that is stated in a report?
• Does the store offer other lighting environments aside from the usual blinding display lights for you to view their jewelry?
• Finally, shop around and visit at least 3 stores. Pick the one that best answers all these questions and make sure you compare prices between different vendors. Chances are, when you know what the different vendors are offering on the table, you will be in a better position to make any negotiations.
Diamonds are the hardest and most durable material on Earth but they aren’t indestructible. Ask your jeweler what are the best methods to maintain and handle the specific piece or jewelry. Alternatively, you might want to spend some time reading this section of our website for more insights on jewelry care. This way, it will allow your jewelry to maintain its luster and keep it sparkly for years to come.