When it comes time to sell your engagement ring, as much as I hate to say it, be prepared to be disappointed in the resale value. I don’t say this to be mean, just honest. Someone needs to tell you the reality of the situation and I’m that guy. I prefer to give you the cold hard truth, so you won’t be shocked when you meet with me.
Keep in mind the estimates written below are just general guidelines that are usually accurate based on the hundreds of engagement rings I purchase each year. This info is just written as a courtesy to you to have an understanding o f the resale market on diamond engagement rings.
IF YOU BOUGHT YOUR RING AT A BIG NAME JEWELRY STORE
In general, your ring will be worth around 20% of the retail purchase price, depending on where it was purchased. If you bought your ring at a large retail jewelry store like Jared, Zales, Kay Jewelers, J.B. Robinson, Michael Hill, Rogers & Hollands, or even Macys, Bloomingdales, Nordstrom, or Saks Fifth Ave, expect around 20% of the original purchase price. Rings from Zales and Jared specifically tend to only bring around 10% to 15% of the purchase price historically.
If your ring was purchased from a private jeweler or at a wholesale dealer’s private office, you most likely got a better deal originally and will likely get around 30% to 40% for your ring assuming it is a higher quality item, with a nice certified center diamond.
IF YOUR DIAMOND ENGAGEMENT RING IS A TOP DESIGNER BRAND
If your ring was made by a well know designer such as Tiffany & Co., Cartier, Neil Lane, Jeff Cooper, Harry Winston, Bulgari, David Yurman, Tacori, Verragio, Ritani, Simon G., Scott K., or another very high end designer, it will be worth MUCH MORE. Depending on the size of the center stone, and desirability of the design, your ring could be worth from 40% to 80% of the retail value! Please feel free to contact me with more information about your high end designer diamond engagement ring.
CERTIFIED CENTER DIAMOND RING
If your diamond ring has a center stone that is certified by GIA, you can call or email me the report number, and I can give you almost an exact price quote without even seeing the stone. This is because GIA (Gemological Institute of America) is the only accurate trusted grading company in the industry. Jewelers trust a GIA report, but all other certificate companies are not very accurate, and tend to over-grade color and clarity by as many as 3 to 4 levels!
If you have a certificate, it is still useful to give me more information about your diamond’s quality and I know to expect a couple levels lower than what the certificate says. These companies include IGI, EGL, EGL USA, AIG, and GSI just to name a few. Please feel free to send me a photo of your certificate and I will come up with a rough price estimate for you!
ROUND DIAMONDS ARE MUCH MORE VALUABLE THEN OTHER SHAPES
Did you know there is an entirely different price sheet for round diamonds verses all the other shapes? The price guide for diamonds that almost all reputable jewelers and diamond buyers refer to is called Rapaport Diamond Report. When you sell me your diamond, I will grade your stone visually, decide the color, clarity, and cut grade, and then consult “Rap sheet” to come up with my offer.
Round diamonds command around 25% more money than any other shape diamond, in the same carat weight and quality! Some shapes are in very low demand, and are heavily discounted. Marquise cut (football shape), Trilliant cut (triangle shape) and Heart cut (heart shape) in particular are the least desirable stones, and will be worth the least amount of money.
CLUSTER RINGS WITH MANY SMALL STONES ARE WORTH MUCH LESS
In general, the larger the center stone, the more value your ring has. So if your ring has a group of smaller stones in the center (sometimes referred to as a cluster or invisible setting) to give the appearance of a larger stone, your ring will have a much lower value. If you bought a ring with a high carat weight like 2, 3 or 4 carats TOTAL WEIGHT but there is not one main center stone, the value will be around 10% to 20% of the purchase price. The quality of the stones on these “LARGE LOOK” rings also tends to be lower, which also lowers the resale value.
Did you know that around 25% of the diamonds I come across have been enhanced or treated in some way to improve the look of the stone? While it may seem like a good idea to make the diamond look better, some of these enhancements can nearly eliminate all the resale value of the diamond!
There are several enhancement techniques that are done to diamonds including laser drilling (actually drilling into the stone and burning away a flaw), fracture filling, irradiation, coating, and HPHT (high pressure High temperature). I can detect these treatments while visually inspecting your diamond, but usually you will not have any documentation disclosing that your diamond has been treated.
Unfortunately, if I give you a quote over the phone, or email, and I discover a treatment to your diamond, the price that I can pay will drop dramatically. If I do discover that your stone has been treated, I will make my best effort to show you with magnification the indications of treatment, and help you understand your stone’s value.
In conclusion, your ring is most likely worth around 20% of the original retail purchase price, and will be more valuable if it has a larger round center diamond, preferable certified by GIA. High end designer rings are the most desirable and will command the most resale value. Cluster rings with large looks, but no large center stone will be worth much less at wholesale level, and any unnatural enhancement to a diamond dramatically reduces its value.
Hopefully this guide has helped you get a feel for what your diamond engagement ring might be worth. Please feel free to call, text (773) 490-9828, or email me with information about your ring, and I will work with you to come up with a ballpark estimate of value on your ring, before we set up a meeting.
Cook County Buyer, Inc.
Chicago Diamond Buyer