You’d be familiar with the concept of buying art or furniture at auction, but have you ever considered bidding for jewellery? It’s the perfect way to find rare or unique secondhand or vintage pieces you’d never come across at a retail jeweller. Even better, it’s easier to snag a bargain in the process.
Secondhand and vintage pieces from estates are great examples of jewellery you’ll find at a good online auction site like ALLBIDS.com.au.
While the auction process isn’t instant like a retail purchase, a buyer who does their research online can make the process far more convenient than heading to your local shopping centre. If you spend the time online, you’ll be rewarded with an eclectic mix of jewellery from the 1900s all the way through to custom-made contemporary gems at bargain prices.
Here are a few tips to help you find the best jewellery via online auctions.
Do your research and read the description and condition reports thoroughly
It is obvious (yet amazing) how many people skim through important details online and miss key descriptors like the size of a ring or diameter of a brooch. Online photos can’t always capture the size of the piece, but good sites should provide great shots and the essential details you need.
If you can, ask to inspect the item before buying. Even if you can’t make it to the showroom or auction premises, simply knowing an item is available for inspection tells you that the auction house is transparent about their descriptions.
The more research you do on similar pieces online will give you a great idea of what your maximum bid should be and give you confidence when you decide to place your bid.
Check the certification carefully
Always check the credentials of the certifier, especially when it comes to diamonds. If you’re unsure, ask the auction house about certification.
Valuations and certification of jewellery are often overpriced, so reputable jewellery valuers do not value items highly and then try to retail them on that basis. The more transparent and independent a valuer is the better. Certified diamonds can be formally assessed by a gemological body such as the Gemmological Institute of America (GIA) for their colour, cut and clarity grades. And remember, it’s always worth asking whether the diamond is synthetic.
Engagement rings are a huge purchase for a young couple, but buying an engagement ring through an online auction is a smart way to save thousands of dollars. Buying a diamond at auction will be far cheaper than buying a diamond at wholesale or retail prices from a dealer or jeweller. But for peace of mind, ask a jeweller or a wholesale diamond merchant for the price of an equivalent diamond before you bid.
Set your limit
If you do your research on a few pieces or a diamond ring, set an auction limit and make sure you calculate the buyer’s premium into the purchase. Good online auction sits should provide a proxy bid service. This is a great tool that will make sure you don’t overpay if you get caught up in the auction excitement.
Check the GST status of the item as well. Most online auctions will sell GST inclusively and add 22 to 25% buyer’s premium to the knockdown price.
Selling your jewellery
ALLBIDS is more than a great place to buy jewellery, it’s a great place to sell it, too.
Following these simple tips will help you get the most from selling your jewellery at ALLBIDS. Having your pieces assessed by an accredited jewellery appraiser can provide you with a realistic estimated price range for your items. The estimate will take into account the age and design of the piece, the beauty and rarity of the gemstones, and the weight and quality of the gold, silver or platinum used.
ALLBIDS can also take professional photos and provide you with expert descriptions of the items, ensuring prospective buyers have all the information they need.
By getting an expert opinion from ALLBIDS prior to selling your items online, you’ll also have a better idea of whether it’s going to be better to run a short auction advertising to ALLBIDS‘ existing database of buyers (generally suitable for lower-value items), or running a slightly longer auction with a tailored PR campaign to get a premium price for your high-value pieces.
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