In the United States, researchers estimate that between 40% and 50% of marriages end in divorce. In my 22+ years in the estate jewelry buying industry, I have purchased many engagement rings and other jewelry from divorcing clients who needed to raise funds for college, retirement, a new car or vacation, or to help pay for the divorce itself. When someone comes to me during divorce, they are often unsure of the process and what to do next.
In the midst of what can be an emotionally overwhelming situation, how do you go about selling your engagement ring, wedding bands, or the other jewelry items collected over the course of the marriage? And how do you accomplish this in the easiest way, while collecting the most money possible for your jewelry?
To begin the process, I suggest gathering the jewelry you are considering selling, and pulling together any information you may have about the pieces – including appraisals, diamond reports, and invoices. You should also take digital pictures of the front and back of the jewelry; these pictures and reports will help a reputable jeweler estimate value whether you visit them in person or contact them via their website.
I have gone through this process with thousands of clients. Deciding which company to trust with selling your engagement ring or other jewelry is an important choice that should be carefully considered. Keep in mind that a true professional should be able to discuss your jewelry intelligently and help you understand the value in the resale market. You should walk away not only feeling confident in the price you’ve received, but also with an education about the value of the pieces you have sold. While individual retail stores, pawnbrokers, and online used ring websites may seem like a convenient choice, these services cannot offer you the same options and resources as a professional jewelry marketer.
A market expert should be able to tell you what a diamond is worth instead of a price based on your expectations. You want realistic information is given to you and not “over-cooked” estimates. You want to know what you will get for your valuables.
One final word of advice: if your divorce is not yet final, talk to your lawyer before parting with valuable items that may be marital rather than your separate property. Armed with this information, you’ll know which items you can sell now, and which may have to wait until you and your spouse have an agreement regarding property division.
Andrew Fabrikant is a jewelry expert in New York City. www.Fabon5th.com.