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There are many reasons you might have for selling a diamond ring. Maybe you were in a relationship that ended, maybe you inherited a ring that you have no emotional attachment to, and maybe you just got lucky at a garage sale, and now you’re looking to make a little extra cash.
Regardless of your reasons, you want to make sure that you sell your ring somewhere reliable for as much money as you can. Luckily, we live in an age when there are plenty of pawn store alternatives that will make selling your diamond ring quick and painless and will net you the most money.
I’ve formed an emotional attachment to a lot of the jewelry in my collection, but there are still pieces that no longer serve me. If you’re thinning out your collection (possibly to make room for more jewelry!), you definitely want to sell your rings for as much money as you can.
If you’re thinking about selling an engagement ring or wedding ring, take your time and make sure you’re ready to let go. Only you will know for sure when you’re ready to move on, and when you are, you probably want the process to be easy and stress-free.
Whether you’re looking for fast cash or a painless way to move on, you’ll find the best pawn store alternatives for diamond rings below.
Bottom Line Up Front
If you’re looking for a pawn store alternative to sell your diamond ring, I highly recommend going with Worthy.com, an online diamond reseller.
They take care of all the hard work of cleaning, photographing, and listing your ring, and will provide you with a free GIA grading report. They’ll then sell your ring at auction to the highest bidder.
If you absolutely need same-day cash for your ring, check with your local jewelry store before heading to a pawn store.
If you’re looking for a pawn store alternative to purchase a diamond ring at a discount, I recommend Diamocycle or Circa Jewels. Both sites buy and sell pre-owned diamond rings, though Diamocycle has a larger selection for sale.
However, Circa Jewels will offer to pay you in gift cards worth more than their cash offer. If you want to sell your diamond ring and upgrade to a ring that suits you better, I would definitely look into Circa Jewels.
First Things First: How Much Can You Get For Your Diamond Ring?
Unless your diamond is extremely rare or your ring is an antique heirloom, don’t expect to turn a profit reselling your diamond ring. In fact, I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but you most likely won’t even receive the market price for your ring.
The diamond market fluctuates, and the value of diamonds does depreciate and appreciate slightly with the market, but at the end of the day, diamonds just aren’t as rare as we think they are. Between wholesalers and online diamond specialists, there are a lot of options out there competing with your ring.
Anyone interested in reselling your diamond ring is going to want to sell it for a profit, and individual consumers have a lot of options for affordable rings customized to suit their style.
You also shouldn’t expect to get much money for your setting. Most resellers are only interested in the diamond but will often offer you the scrap value of your setting. Whether or not consumers are interested in your setting will depend on their style preferences.
All told, you should expect to receive anywhere from around 25-65% of the market value for your diamond ring, maybe 70% if you’re lucky.
Now that I’ve managed your expectations regarding how much you can expect to receive for your diamond ring (again, I’m sorry if that came as a shock,) let’s look at some options for where to sell your ring.
Selling Your Ring at a Pawn Store
Pawn stores are generally not a great option for selling outright. The thing people tend to forget about pawn shops is that their primary function is to give short-term loans to people who need fast cash in exchange for collateral.
A pawn shop will hold your item in exchange for a cash loan, and you’ll typically have a period of one to several months to pay the loan back (plus interest) in order to recover your item. It is possible to sell a diamond to a pawn shop outright, but pawn shops still won’t give you the best price for your diamond.
Buyers go into a pawn store expecting to pay very low prices, and the store still needs to turn a profit on your diamond, so the amount the store can offer you is likely to be far below what other specialty diamond resellers will offer.
That being said, a pawn store will provide you with same-day cash in hand, which can be crucial depending on your circumstances.
Buying a Ring at a Pawn Store
I wouldn’t recommend pawn stores as an inexpensive place to buy diamond rings. You won’t have nearly the selection you would find at a specialty diamond or jewelry seller.
If you’re lucky, you might find one or even several diamond rings at your local pawn shop, but even then, there’s no guarantee that they’ll suit your style.
If you see something, you love and can verify that it’s authentic, go for it, but don’t walk into a pawn shop expecting to find the ring of your dreams at a discount.
Alternatives to Selling a Diamond Ring at a Pawn Store
When it comes to selling (and buying, for that matter) engagement and wedding rings, there are plenty of better alternatives to pawn stores.
All of the places on this list are reliable, reputable, and will fetch you a higher price for your ring. Let’s explore some of these alternative options.
Direct to Consumer Sites
Direct-to-consumer sites have the potential to fetch you a higher profit for your diamond ring since you’re cutting out a middle man who would be purchasing your ring with the intent to resell it (and turn a profit of their own.)
However, it can take months to make a sale on a direct-to-consumer site, and many of these sites come with a higher risk of scams than some of the other options on this list.
Be wary of any offers that seem too good to be true, make sure all payments are verified, and be on the lookout for counterfeit cash, bad checks, or scam banking transfers.
If you’re selling your diamond ring through the mail, make sure to get shipping confirmation (in case the buyer claims they never received their purchase,) and when selling in person, always meet in a public place.
Some Popular Direct-to-Consumer Sites
eBay is a popular place to buy and sell pretty much anything you can think of, and diamond rings are no exception.
Unfortunately, eBay has a ton of competition for sellers, and buyers are wary of scams. That means unless you’re an experienced seller with a proven track record and good reviews, buyers may pass you up for a seller they feel more confident in.
Just like eBay, you can sell all kinds of things on Facebook Marketplace, but unlike eBay, you have to set a fixed price for your ring (which means that there’s no chance that a bidding war might drive your price higher.) I would also be very wary of scams on Facebook Marketplace, both as a buyer and a seller.
Just like with eBay, if you can think of it, you can probably purchase it on Craigslist (for better or worse.) There are certainly people who buy and sell rings on Craigslist, but it wouldn’t be my first choice. (Or fifth, for that matter.)
The site comes with all the cons associated with eBay, and you don’t even have the appeal of an auction model to help drive your prices higher.
There are a lot of engagement rings available for purchase on Etsy, but if you’re going to sell yours, it’s worth looking into what you can and can’t sell on the marketplace. Unless you made the ring yourself or it’s at least 20 years old (Etsy’s definition of “vintage,”) you probably shouldn’t sell it on Etsy.
Online Diamond and Jewelry Resellers
Online diamond and jewelry resellers specialize in (you guessed it) diamonds and jewelry, which means that potential buyers are more likely to shop with them than waste their time browsing through a million pawn shops.
Unlike direct-to-consumer sites, however, these resellers are in the business of buying your diamond ring with the intent to sell it, which means they need to buy it at a rate that allows them to turn a profit later.
Since their buyers are unlikely to purchase a ring from them above the market price (because why would they?), the reseller will have to buy your ring from you at a rate considerably lower than market price.
Some Popular Online Diamond and Jewelry Resellers
Worthy is an online auction house. Their system works a little differently than some of their competitors since they don’t buy your diamond ring outright. Rather, they take care of cleaning, grading, and photographing your ring and create a listing in their online marketplace.
The ring is then sold at auction to Worthy’s network of professional buyers. The entire process takes about two weeks, with very little effort on your part.
It’s worth noting that while Worthy lets you set a minimum price you’re willing to sell your ring for, you shouldn’t expect to receive anywhere near the market price for your ring. If you’re a qualified, professional buyer, you can also purchase rings through Worthy, but you need to be approved by the company first.
Cash for Gold USA buys pretty much anything containing diamonds, gold, silver, platinum, or palladium. Seriously, anything — they’ll even buy broken jewelry or dental crowns, as long as they’re made from one of the metals mentioned above.
You ship them your items, and they’ll make you an offer based on the scrap or melt value of your jewelry (or…teeth?) It’s a great way to get rid of broken jewelry and return a quick profit, but I wouldn’t necessarily recommend it for selling a diamond ring.
You’re more likely to fetch a higher price elsewhere. You also can’t make purchases through Cash for Gold USA.
Circa Jewels is an online marketplace where you can buy and sell pre-owned jewelry. They will evaluate your ring and send you an offer.
If you accept their offer, they’ll send you cash almost immediately. You can also choose to receive payment in the form of a gift card to Blue Nile worth 110% of their cash offer, or the Circa Jewels Store worth 120% of the cash offer.
This is a great option if you’re trying to sell your diamond ring because you want to upgrade it to something that better suits you.
Diamocycle is another online marketplace, one that specializes in pre-owned diamond jewelry. You create a listing for your ring on Diamocycle’s site, and once the ring sells, you first send it to Diamocycle.
They then verify that all of the information you provided was accurate before sending it to the buyer (and taking a commission, of course.) You can also browse and purchase diamond rings and loose diamonds on their marketplace, though you need to create an account to do so.
Professional Auction Houses
Professional auction houses such as Sotheby’s and Christie’s are accustomed to dealing with fine jewelry such as diamond rings. They’ll often appraise your ring for free (or a small fee) and then sell it at auction, taking a commission, of course.
I would recommend using one of these professional auction houses only if your diamond ring is very large or very rare. They most likely will have little interest in smaller rings, to begin with, and they take a larger cut of the profits than some of the resellers listed above.
Local Brick and Mortar Shops
Buying pre-owned diamond rings from your local shops is a great way to support the local economy, though you won’t find the same selection you’ll find online.
The overhead of maintaining a brick and mortar may also mean you’ll pay higher prices than you would through an online retailer. That being said, shopping local is never a bad idea, even if you’re just browsing.
Selling your diamond ring at a local shop is a whole different ball game. Whether or not you’ll receive an offer you like, or even receive an offer at all, really depends on each individual shop. If you’ve got a local store that you like, it’s worth inquiring about selling your ring.
Local Brick and Mortar Shops Include
Your Local Jeweler
If your local jeweler is a small business and is used to dealing in pre-owned jewelry, it might be worth selling to them, especially if you already have a relationship with the store.
Most local jewelers, however, are used to purchasing their products through wholesalers, who can offer low prices and with whom forming a solid relationship can be critical for the jeweler. If your jeweler does make you an offer on your ring, expect it to be lower than market price.
After all, why would they buy from you when they can purchase a similar ring through a wholesaler? If you do sell to a jeweler, you’ll most likely receive same-day cash in hand, so it’s not the worst option if you’re looking to make a quick buck off your ring.
Consignment shops have the potential to net you more cash than many of the other options on this list, depending on the shop. However, you should be prepared to wait months, or potentially even years, before you see any of that money.
Consignment shops’ sales are limited to local buyers who enter the shop, so it could be a very long time before someone who wants your ring even comes across it.
If you’ve got the time and are planning on selling your ring through a consignment shop, make sure you know exactly what percentage of the sale price the shop takes — some consignment shops take more than 50%!
Answer: Generally speaking, it’s better to sell jewelry at a jewelry store than a pawn shop. You’re more likely to receive more money for your ring through someone that specializes in jewelry. That being said, online jewelry resellers and direct-to-consumer marketplaces are some of the best places to sell your jewelry.
Answer: Diamond resale value is low because when you attempt to resell a diamond that you paid market price for, you’ll have to compete with wholesalers.
Jewelry shops and diamond resellers aren’t interested in paying market price for your pre-owned ring when they can purchase a new ring at wholesale prices.
Answer: On average, you should expect to receive around 25-60% of the market price of your diamond when you resell it. That means you can resell a one-carat diamond for anywhere from $1,000 to 10,000, depending on other factors, such as the cut, clarity, and color of your diamond.
Answer: Unless your diamond is extremely rare, such as a fancy colored diamond, it will most likely lose value slightly over time.
It is possible for diamonds, in general, to appreciate in price. Still, most people interested in purchasing a pre-owned diamond are doing so because they want to purchase a diamond at a discount, either for themselves or to resell.
I think that an online jewelry reseller is the best and easiest alternative to a pawn store when it comes to selling a diamond ring. If I were to choose one, I would definitely use Worthy.com.
Worthy may not get you quite as much money for your ring as you may want, but they’ll get you as much as they can, and they’ll do it quickly and with almost no effort on your part.
If I wanted to sell my ring for the most money possible, I would probably attempt to list it myself on a direct-to-consumer site like eBay and just wait it out.
If you’re looking for a pawn store alternative to purchase a diamond ring, sites like Circa Jewels and Diamocycle sell pre-owned rings at a discount.
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