We really did go shopping: We went to Sam's Club, Office Depot and Office Max in search of a good deal on a laptop. We did find one at Office Max, but ended up not buying it after all. There went almost 3 hours--after all, you can't expect us to just spend 5 minutes at Sam's Club: so many food samples, so little time!
At the risk of sounding like a paid advertisement, the next hour was the key to the "came home with more money than we left with". We went to visit the Gold Guys at Ward Center,* armed with their full page ad. We actually went first to the Wedding Ring Shoppe, but left because there was too long a wait and the atmosphere made us feel like we might end up spending instead of making money. At the Gold Guys, however, there were several tables of appraisers with customers and hey, we were offered cookies while we waited. "I'm home!"
We were finally called to a table and my mom promptly asked our appraiser if he was one of the Gold Guys (eye-rolling on my part since he looked nothing like those guys). Turns out the Gold Guys don't even live in Hawaii. Never mind, just so their money is here!
The appraisal process is very drawn out, especially since there were two of us--my mom and I--each with our own jewelry junk pile:
1) The appraiser first goes through the pieces with a magnet and rejects anything that the magnet sticks to.
2) Next he used a jeweler's loupe to check for markings such as "925" for silver, or "14kt", etc., segregating the jewelry into little piles. This step took very long for some reason--I think he checked and rechecked every piece!
|Chemically testing for gold content|
|I was offered $39 for a 1 gram ingot and|
I later learned they go for about $60
|The gold I sold was a much smaller |
amount than this.
My mother was pleased to get about $150 for some old silver earrings and two class rings (again, weighed with stones). At one point, as the appraiser scrutinized her old pearl ring and a pair of silver anthurium earrings stamped "Ming's", I told her she should keep them. She said "Nah, why? I have no use for them." He weighed them and said he'd give her $7 for the two. "What!? No way, I'LL give her $7!" and woohoo, I scored the two "antiques" for $7!
And so we left the store after about an hour and a half, turned right into the Brookstone Store and bought Jordan her beautiful $10 light ball. For us, it really was a "black"--rather than "red"--Friday...and I didn't have to sell a single appliqued tshirt!!
*[UPDATE: One of my friends called me today to tell me that after hearing my story, her daughter took their jewelry to The Gold Guys in Ward Center and got over $500. The buyer asked who referred her and she gave my name. I didn't realize they have a referral program! So please give my name (Colleen M. Toyama, in case you didn't know) if you sell your gold there also (first visit only). Thanks!]