What is My Ruby Jewelry Worth and How To Sell It?
Understanding Ruby Jewelry
Rubies are among the most sought-after gemstones in the world, prized for their vibrant red color and exceptional hardness. Rubies are a variety of the mineral corundum, which is composed primarily of aluminum oxide. Their red hue is caused by the presence of chromium in the crystal lattice. The hardness of rubies, measured at 9 on the Mohs scale, makes them incredibly durable and ideal for use in jewelry.
Factors Affecting Ruby Value
There are several factors that determine the value of a ruby. More in-depth information can be found at the GIA website. The most important factors include:
Color: The most valuable rubies have a deep, vivid red color, often referred to as "pigeon blood" red.
Clarity: Rubies with fewer inclusions (internal flaws) are more valuable.
Cut: A well-cut ruby will showcase its color and brilliance to the best effect.
Carat Weight: Larger rubies are rarer and more valuable.
Treatment: Untreated rubies are worth more than treated ones.
Provenance: Rubies that have an interesting or important backstory can be worth more
How to Determine the Value of Your Ruby Jewelry
An appraisal is a professional assessment of the value of your ruby jewelry. Appraisers are trained to examine gemstones and jewelry and provide an estimated value based on current market conditions. An appraisal can be useful for insurance purposes or for determining a resale value. You can find out more about the difference in appraisal values and market values here.
Professional Gemologist Evaluation
Another way to determine the value of your ruby jewelry is to have it evaluated by a professional gemologist. Gemologists are experts in gemstone identification and evaluation, and they can provide you with an accurate assessment of your ruby's quality and value.
While professional appraisals and gemologist evaluations are the most accurate ways to determine the value of your ruby jewelry, you can also conduct research on similar items sold online or at auction can also help you get a general idea of your ruby's worth.
Selling Ruby Jewelry
Preparing Your Jewelry for Sale
Before selling your ruby jewelry, it's essential to clean and inspect it. You'll want to remove any dirt, dust, or grime and ensure that the jewelry is in good condition. This will help to attract buyers and ensure you get the best price possible.
There are several ways to sell your ruby jewelry, including:
Online platforms like eBay, Etsy, and Poshmark allow you to reach a wide audience and sell your ruby jewelry from the comfort of your home. Be sure to include clear, high-quality photos and an accurate description of your piece in your listing to attract potential buyers. Keep in mind that selling on these platforms may require you to pay fees, and shipping costs should be considered as well.
Specialist Online Buyers
There are specialist jewelry buyers like White Pine that work predominantly online and have national and international connections in the second hand jewelry market. They will make you a direct offer to buy your ruby jewelry without the need for listing your items for sale. It's important to include clear, high-quality photos in your inquiry and submit any paperwork you have such as jewelry appraisals or certificates. This method of selling will require you to send your items via an insured shipping service for an expert valuation. It's worth noting that this option is by far the simplest way to get access to great prices with a simple selling process.
Selling your ruby jewelry through an auction house can potentially fetch a higher price, especially if your piece is particularly rare or valuable. Reputable auction houses have knowledgeable staff who can help you determine an appropriate starting price and market your jewelry to interested collectors. Be aware that auction houses typically charge a commission for their services.
Local Jewelry Stores
Local jewelry stores may be interested in purchasing your ruby jewelry, particularly if they specialize in estate jewelry or have a clientele for high-quality gemstones. This option offers the advantage of a quick sale, but you may receive a lower price as the store will need to make a profit when reselling your piece and may only use local pricing.
Private buyers, such as collectors or gem enthusiasts, may be interested in purchasing your ruby jewelry. You can advertise your piece in online forums, social media groups, or through word-of-mouth. Private sales can yield a higher price, as there are no middlemen involved, but they may take longer to find the right buyer.
Most Notable Ruby Sales
The Sunrise Ruby (25.59-carat Burmese ruby)
In May 2015, the Sunrise Ruby, a stunning 25.59-carat Burmese ruby, fetched an astonishing $30.42 million at a Sotheby's auction in Geneva. This extraordinary sale set a world record price for a ruby, as well as the highest price-per-carat for a colored gemstone at the time, reaching over $1.18 million per carat. The exceptional stone, named after a poem by the 13th-century Persian poet Rumi, was set in a Cartier ring and is known for its rarity, given its size, color, and quality.
The Hope Ruby (32.08-carat Burmese ruby)
Another noteworthy ruby sale is that of the Hope Ruby, a remarkable 32.08-carat Burmese gem. In 2012, this impressive stone was sold at a Christie's auction in Geneva for $6.74 million, which equated to roughly $210,000 per carat. The Hope Ruby was formerly part of the collection of the renowned American gem collector and philanthropist Henry Philip Hope, after whom the famous Hope Diamond is also named. This extraordinary gemstone is celebrated for its deep, pigeon blood-red hue, which is highly sought after in the world of gemstones.
Determining the worth of your ruby jewelry and finding the right way to sell it can be a daunting task. By understanding the factors that contribute to ruby value, seeking professional advice when needed, and exploring the various selling options available, you can maximize your jewelry's value and find the best approach for your unique situation.
You can make an inquiry to sell your item with White Pine here.
How can I be sure that my ruby is genuine?
To ensure your ruby is genuine, have it evaluated by a professional gemologist or seek an appraisal from a reputable source. They can help you determine whether your ruby is natural, synthetic, or an imitation.
What is the difference between treated and untreated rubies?
Treated rubies have undergone processes, such as heat treatment or fracture filling, to enhance their color or clarity. Untreated rubies have not undergone any treatments and are typically more valuable than treated rubies.
How do I choose the right selling option for my ruby jewelry?
Consider factors such as the value of your ruby, the time you're willing to invest in the selling process, and your desired level of involvement. Online platforms are convenient and reach a wide audience, while auction houses can potentially fetch higher prices for valuable pieces. Local jewelry stores offer a quick sale, and private buyers may yield a higher price but may take longer to find.
Should I have my ruby jewelry appraised before selling?
Having your ruby jewelry appraised can provide you with an accurate assessment of its value and help you determine a fair asking price. It can also be useful for insurance purposes.
Is it better to sell my ruby jewelry as a whole piece or as individual components (e.g., gemstones and metal separately)?
Selling your ruby jewelry as a whole piece typically yields a higher price, as the craftsmanship and design add value. However, if your ruby is particularly valuable and the setting is not, selling the gemstone separately may be worth considering.
Tips For Selling Your Ruby Jewelry
Be Transparent About Your Ruby's Characteristics
Be honest about its characteristics, including any treatments it may have undergone, its size, and its overall condition. This transparency will build trust with potential buyers and reduce the chances of disputes or returns.
Set A Target Price Appropriately
Research similar ruby jewelry pieces that have sold recently, considering factors like color, clarity, size, and treatments. This information will help you establish a fair and competitive asking price for your piece.
Provide Clear, High-Quality Photos
When selling your ruby jewelry online or via an auction house, clear and high-quality photos are essential. Take photos in natural light and from multiple angles, highlighting the unique features of your piece. This will help potential buyers appreciate the beauty and value of your ruby jewelry.
Be Patient and Persistent
Selling ruby jewelry can take time, especially if you're looking for the best possible price. Be patient and persistent in your efforts, and don't be afraid to explore multiple selling options to find the one that works best for you.
Consider Selling Your Ruby Jewelry to a Reputable Dealer
If you prefer a quick and hassle-free selling experience, consider selling your ruby jewelry to a reputable dealer like White Pine. They may offer you a lower price compared to selling directly to a private buyer or through an auction, but the convenience and speed of the transaction might be worth the trade-off.
Tips For Protecting Yourself During the Selling Process
When selling your ruby jewelry, it's essential to take precautions to protect yourself and your valuable piece. Here are some tips to ensure a smooth and secure transaction:
Document the Entire Process
Keep records of all communications with potential buyers, including emails, messages, and phone calls. This documentation can help protect you in case of disputes or issues that may arise during the selling process.
Verify the Buyer's Identity and Reputation
Always check the reputation of the buyer you are working with and verify their identity and reputation. Check for references or feedback from previous transactions, and be cautious of buyers who seem too eager or pushy.
Insure and Track Your Shipment
If you're shipping your ruby jewelry to a buyer, be sure to insure the package and use a shipping method that provides tracking information (most reuputable buyers will provide this to you free of charge). This will protect you in case the package is lost, damaged, or stolen during transit.