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Noobie here looking for help and reassurance.

xnysgt

Rough_Rock
Joined
May 7, 2016
Messages
6
Hi All,

I'm brand spanking new here and admittedly don't know a lot about jewelry, but that's why I'm here.

At an auction recently, I took a leap of faith, or did something really stupid (which, I'm hoping you all can tell me) and I bought a diamond tennis bracelet for $2,390.00 with the hopes of flipping it to make a little profit. I'm hoping I didn't bite off more than I can chew considering my lack of knowledge, and I'm hoping the professionals here can give their thoughts on this.

It came with an insurance appraisal (dated February 2016) for the estimated retail replacement value of $12,000.00 from GemAssure Gemological Appraisals out of Los Angeles (I'll try posting a copy). I hope it's okay to post that, if not, moderators please accept my apologies and remove it. From what I've read, and please correct and educate me if I'm wrong, I believe the actual real world value is going to be somewhere at or below 50% of that insurance appraisal value.

Just in case the insurance appraisal doesn't post properly, or isn't easily viewable, I'll post the bracelet specifics too.

Here is the description from the appraisal:
Fourteen karat (14K) white gold round brilliant cut diamond bracelet. Round brilliant cut diamonds are prong set throughout the center of the bracelet. The bracelet is cast stamped "14K" and has a gross weight of 9.9 grams.

Diamonds:
Shape: Round Brilliant Cut (45 pcs.)
Weight: 5.00 carats (Max. Diameter-3.0mm.; Min. Diameter-2.8mm.)
Average Clarity: S12-12
Average Color: G-H
Symmetry: Very Good
Polish: Very Good

Metal(s):
Purity: 14K
Color: White
Condition: Excellent
Finish: High Polish

I understand it would be unethical, etc, to provide an actual dollar value without an in-person inspection. That said, in reading through various threads here, I've seen some various value breakdowns by members/moderators here with the caveat that markets vary and the usual variables. I've also seen opines on the fairness and accuracy of the appraisals. With all of this in mind, I was hoping for opinions of the [ballpark] real world value of this bracelet, since I do intend to sell it, and any other help and/or thoughts.

I'm prepared for the worst and have thick skin, so all thoughts and comments are welcomed and appreciated, so thank you very much in advance.

_37120.jpg
 

xnysgt

Rough_Rock
Joined
May 7, 2016
Messages
6
Okay, the fact that there have been no comments has me concerned...
 

Gypsy

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Aug 8, 2005
Messages
40,198
Yeah. If you wanted to flip it, you made a pretty poor choice. Frankly. If you picked it for yourself, it may not be such a bad option.

We would need better pictures. Clarity is a big concern.

Flipping jewelry, even for someone like me, is hit or miss. Bracelets are generally a bad investment for it.
 

xnysgt

Rough_Rock
Joined
May 7, 2016
Messages
6
Gypsy|1462662106|4028768 said:
Yeah. If you wanted to flip it, you made a pretty poor choice. Frankly. If you picked it for yourself, it may not be such a bad option.

We would need better pictures. Clarity is a big concern.

Flipping jewelry, even for someone like me, is hit or miss. Bracelets are generally a bad investment for it.
Okay thanks, I'll try to get some pics posted.
 

Dancing Fire

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Apr 3, 2004
Messages
31,507
xnysgt|1462631904|4028572 said:
Hi All,

I'm brand spanking new here and admittedly don't know a lot about jewelry, but that's why I'm here.

At an auction recently, I took a leap of faith, or did something really stupid (which, I'm hoping you all can tell me) and I bought a diamond tennis bracelet for $2,390.00 with the hopes of flipping it to make a little profit. I'm hoping I didn't bite off more than I can chew considering my lack of knowledge, and I'm hoping the professionals here can give their thoughts on this.
Most likely yes!... ::) The appraisal is a worthless piece of paper.
 

arkieb1

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
May 11, 2012
Messages
9,512
Unfortunately the majority of the stones are probably I1s and I2s even with 5 carats this means the stones themselves will not be worth much and it's set in 14K gold not 18K or platinum. Some valuations can be written by the vendors themselves, and are often misleading and are not only overly generous in the colour and clarity of the stones they grossly over estimate the value of the item. If for example the stones are all I1s and I2s the bracelet wholesale is worth around half or less than what you paid for it. If their description is accurate you paid about what resale on somewhere like ebay would be, so you might be able to make a small profit if you are lucky or you might actually lose money.

If you buy from auction sites you have to really know and understand jewellery to make money.
 

Gypsy

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Aug 8, 2005
Messages
40,198
I can walk you through what my thought process would be.

First thing is to check the appraiser. This is the place: https://www.yelp.com/biz/gemassure-gemological-appraisals-los-angeles-2 16 good yelp reviews. Seems okay. Then you read them and you notice most of the people on there are commenting on the fact that they are able to get in right away and that the guy is affable. Not a guarantee of quality. No insurance companies left reviews. Still 5 stars isn't a bad thing, even though really the people reviewing know next nothing about jewelry appraisals . Then you go to BBB. No result. Hmmm.

Then you go to their website. http://gemassure.com/about/ No accreditation. Just a GIA graduate. That's nothing. Compare that to: http://www.americangemregistry.com/ Fully accredited by the International Society of Appraisers, the American Gem Society and by the National Association of Jewelry Appraisers. This is what you want to see. That's your first flag that tells you that the appraisal is not to be trusted.

If the stones were good quality (nicely cut, true G/H color, and eyeclean Si1/Vs2) and the setting was in great shape, each stone securely and correctly set, the rhodium plating recent you could get as much as 1,000 a carat or thereabouts for it (if the seller is popular, has great pictures, the item is popular), second hand if you marketed it right on ebay. And got the right buyer. You typically see similar bracelets SELLING for 1000 a carat on ebay. (Not just listings, because a lot of people are on crack for the prices they want. You want SOLD listings to look at)

I see no evidence from that evaluation that this is going to be the case. And the appraisal even says Si2. So right away you know you are going to get less than that because of the clarity.

If the stones were 2.8 mm-3.0mm as listed and WELL CUT then they would be 10 points each. Which means there would be 50 stones. There are only 45 of them. So that means they are a little over 11 points each should each be 3.00mm, no hedging. No "2.8mm". That's the second flag. So your bracelet may not even weigh 5 carats (jewelers round up) or alternately, the there could indeed be 5 carats of them, but likely they will be poorly cut and deep, therefore not very sparkly at all. "Very good" is not a statement of quality when it comes to diamond cut. Quite the contrary. Third flag.

Most appraisals, without a lab report, are inaccurate when it comes to color and clarity. It is always best to assume that the color and clarity are one color and one clarity grade lower. Especially any time you see "Si2" that is usually I1 at best. That's just experience especially from some no name GIA grad, unaccredited, who has hung his shingle out.

That means the most you can hope is that the specs of the bracelet match this one at a minimum: http://www.bluenile.com/diamond-tennis-bracelet-14k-white-gold_32326?elem=title&track=product

Or this one: http://www.jared.com/en/jaredstore/diamonds-100259--1/diamond-bracelet-5-ct-tw-round-cut-14k-white-gold-211289208

Then there is the phrase: "Retail Replacement Value" that means what you can expect to pay for the item, if you have to replace it in the event of loss, NEW. So let's check that out. A basic google search or a simple check with Blue Nile and Jared would have given you that a decent comparable for price of 6,000-7,500 NEW instead of the VASTLY OVER-INFLATED price of 12,000 listed on the appraisal. That should have been your fourth flag. And where you cut your losses and RUN.


But you didn't do that. So you look on ebay and see what's available. And you pull up listing like this one:
http://www.ebay.com/itm/14K-White-Gold-Natural-Diamond-Tennis-Bracelet-5ctw-WOW-Safety-Clasp-Chain-/301936844758?hash=item464cd69fd6:g:vMkAAOSwgQ9V4G-X Listed at 4k. No one watching. No one buying. Seller has 400+ transactions and 100% rating. Which, you probably do not have.
And this one: http://www.ebay.com/itm/Stunning-5-00ct-Round-Cut-Diamonds-14k-White-Gold-Box-Link-Tennis-Bracelet/131641624488?_trksid=p2047675.c100009.m1982&_trkparms=aid%3D777000%26algo%3DABA.MBE%26ao%3D1%26asc%3D36462%26meid%3D64672ac947a84508991b7dab15d26991%26pid%3D100009%26rk%3D1%26rkt%3D1%26sd%3D301936844758 A LOT more metal than yours and MUCH heavier so worth MUCH more than yours since the stones are probably eyeclean. So that's your competition. So you aren't getting NEAR that price.
Then there is this one: http://www.ebay.com/itm/AMAZING-5-00-ct-LADIES-DIAMOND-TENNIS-BRACELET-YELLOW-GOLD-14K-made-in-USA/181918048009?_trksid=p2047675.c100009.m1982&_trkparms=aid%3D777000%26algo%3DABA.MBE%26ao%3D1%26asc%3D36462%26meid%3D64672ac947a84508991b7dab15d26991%26pid%3D100009%26rk%3D1%26rkt%3D1%26sd%3D301936844758 Poor seller rating. So you can't depend on any of that. BUT it is 13.3 grams and that is much heavier than yours. And metal is $$. So you are unlikely to get that much either.

So let's say, from that research you expect to get is half the retail price of that Jared bracelet, since it is second hand, so $3000 or thereabouts MAX.

What does that mean? You paid 2390. That means the MAXIMUM return you can get is 600. That's not a heck of a lot of money when you consider you would have to get REALLY REALLY lucky that someone with 3000 would pick YOUR listing over one of those above. OR a bracelet with 4 carats and better color, clarity and specs.

So, that means this it is a high risk, low return transaction that depends on a lot of luck for you to make a return. And honestly, most likely, you just won't sell it quickly (just a fact). So you have to consider the fact that you will have 2,400 tied up (opportunity cost) in something that you may NEVER be able to sell for more than you paid.

What does all that mean? Bad investment for RESALE. But probably worth what you paid (assuming it comes back at I color and I1 clarity and TRULY 5 carats and the stones aren't dead) if you want to keep it and inclusions don't bother you.

And that only took me a 1/2 hour of research. But I am experienced, and you aren't. So let's say double that time to do that. So one hour. Which is the basic amount of research you should have done before spending 2400 on something. :read:

Hope this helps.
 

Wink

Ideal_Rock
Trade
Joined
May 3, 2001
Messages
7,472
Gypsy wrote you a short book with a lot of great information in it.

Short story,

I could buy SI2 to I2 diamonds, and make that bracelet using cheap New York or LA setting houses and $2.50 per stone labor to create this piece for less than what you paid. Less than that if I was using breakout goods. I2 diamonds generally require a road map to find the clear spots and are "affectionately" referred to as frozen spit in the trade. (Please note, I said could, not would.)

Without actually seeing the bracelet, I can only guess that the diamonds do not sparkle much and that the setting work is sloppy. I could easily be wrong, but that would be my guess.

Wink
 

teobdl

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
May 8, 2013
Messages
986
Looking on eBay, you paid about what others are asking for similar pieces in the Buy It Now offerings.

I imagine you mostly just want to get rid of it without a loss. Consider selling it on eBay, craigslist, or on consignment for a price that nets you a very small profit. Maybe shop it around to jewelers in your area and see if they're willing to take a plunge on it (not likely if they're knowledgeable). If you're working in person, start at a price that leaves room for a fair negotiation that works for both parties.
 

xnysgt

Rough_Rock
Joined
May 7, 2016
Messages
6
Gypsy, et al,

Thank you for your patience, the information, education and guidance. I truly appreciate your time and collective knowledge offered to help me better understand where I stand, how to proceed from here, and how not to end up here again. At this point I'll start doing some research and if I do decide to go the eBay route, I'll hope my 100% feedback rating will be a benefit even if my history is only a couple of hundred. Since my focus now will be to recoup my money as opposed to making money, I'll start locally and branch out from there.

This is a great forum and I'm grateful to have found it, and you all.
 

heididdl

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Oct 25, 2012
Messages
2,291
You really should have come here before you bought this so sorry.
 

xnysgt

Rough_Rock
Joined
May 7, 2016
Messages
6
After all the valuable feedback I received here (and I give you my sincerest thank you for that) I set off to work on unloading this bracelet. I did get two offers that were just over what I had invested. Then I received a third offer and was able to sell it for $3,500.00. So while it wasn't a coup or huge deal, I was still able to make a little more than $1100 profit for the month my money was tied up in this purchase, so I am appreciative for everyone's help. Next time I'll be here well in advance of any purchases and my research will be exhaustive. Thanks again.
 

canuk-gal

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Apr 19, 2004
Messages
20,546
HI:

You did very well. In cases such as these, it is nice to have good "luck".

cheers--Sharon
 
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