And You Thought You Knew Gold Jewelry.
Learn about the technical aspects of the world’s most enduring investment.
Gold is associated with luxury and class, as well as financial stability. Gold IS money.
Because gold is used to back up the genuine worth of money, it is in high demand all around the world. With rising inflation and unexpected market increases and falls, gold is a solid hedge against these risks.
Knowing how to buy gold is crucial before making a purchase because there is so much at stake. We go over everything you need to know about gold in this detailed tutorial.
Know your gold's purity levels
If you've ever heard Bruno Mars' song 24-Karat Magic and wondered what he meant when he sang about '24 karat magic in the air,' it's because 24-karat gold is 100% pure. Doesn't make sense now, does it? Now, let's go on.
There are 24 units in every gold alloy that we refer to as "karats." When you buy 24 carat gold, you're getting 100 percent pure, unadulterated gold, which translates to pure, unadulterated cash in your wallet.
If 24-karat gold is 100 percent pure, 10-karat gold is 41.7 percent pure (mathematically stated as 10/24 = 41.7 percent) by virtue of proportion.
As a result, the usual rule is that gold's worth is proportional to its purity – the purer the gold, the more valuable it is.
That isn't to say that when buying gold, you should always aim for a higher purity level. Take a look at these two crucial exceptions:
What is the purpose of it?
Gold is a delicate metal that can readily damage. Choose LOW-KARAT pieces if you want to wear them every day. The karats used are 10, 12, and 14 karats. Gold and other metals are used in low-karat pieces to strengthen the alloy.
Rings and bracelets that are subjected to friction against hard surfaces should be purchased in 10 and 12-karat gold.
14 – 18 karats are ideal for necklaces and earrings that will be protected from knocks and bumps. For two reasons, HIGH-KARAT pieces ranging from 18 to 24 karats are suitable for special occasions, parties, and ceremonial events:
For starters, your gold is rarely used, and when it is, it is treated with care to avoid undue harm. Two, you get to flaunt your money and grandeur in a low-key way. That last one isn't really a cause.
Ask yourself, "Is this golden alloy "good" for me?"
Other particular instances should be considered in addition to the jewelry's purpose.
Other metals may be present in gold jewelry. Nickel is one of the most popular metals used in golden alloys. It makes the jewelry more durable, but it is a problem for persons who are allergic to nickel.
If you are allergic to nickel, jewelry with a higher percentage of gold content is preferable. For you, 18 karat purity is advised.
Not everything that glitters is gold...literally!
It's not true that just because your jewelry appears to be made of gold, it is. Only a few magnificent pieces of gold jewelry are fashioned of real 24-karat gold (100 percent pure gold). However, there is a difference between gold filled and gold plated jewelry, and if you want to buy gold, you must understand the distinction.
The term "gold filled jewelry" refers to jewelry that is filled with gold.
As previously said, an alloy is a metallic composition consisting of gold and other metals combined to make a harder metal.
For a variety of reasons, shoppers prefer gold alloys to gold-plated jewelry:
After pure 24-karat gold, this is the most precious sort of golden jewelry.
Apart from the rare requirement for cleaning, they do not tarnish, fade, chip, or change color over time - they are even dubbed "lifetime" products because they do not wear out.
The government supervises the trafficking of gold-filled jewelry in several nations, ensuring that your capital is well-protected.
Non-gold base metals are dipped in molten gold to form a golden coat on the surface of gold plated items, on the other hand. This is a more cost-effective option than gold-filled jewelry because:
Plating is often quite thin and easily wears away.
The selling of gold-plated jewelry is only weakly regulated, if at all.
They're easy to find on the market.
Vermeil plating, a type of plating that utilizes the same method but on a specific base metal, sterling silver, uses the same process. Vermeil has many of the same benefits as conventional gold-plated jewelry, but it is better for people who are allergic to nickel.
Understand your metals and colors
Pure 24-karat gold appears yellow, but because it is soft, malleable, and costly, it is not always viable to buy pure gold.
This is why, as we've seen, jewelers have devised a process for combining gold with stronger metals. Because these objects are normally made of 18-karat gold, the other metals have an impact on the yellow tint and result in an alloy of a different hue.
When it comes to gold, the color golden yellow isn't the only option. Here are some of the gold colors you should be aware of:
White gold resembles a brighter variant of silver in appearance. For engagement rings, it is just as popular as yellow gold. In goods known as two-toned, white gold is sometimes combined with yellow gold. White gold is formed of white metals that are stronger than gold (such as palladium, nickel, or manganese).
Rose gold is a gold alloy with a pinkish color that has become a craze in engagement rings. Copper is added to gold, usually 14 karats or 58.5 percent purity, to achieve the pink flush. Crown Gold is the highest karat variant of this alloy, consisting of 75 percent gold and 25 percent copper.
Green gold — A gold-silver alloy, green gold is one of the rarest types. It has a vivid greenish yellow color that looks great with green stones like emerald and peridot. Green gold is mostly created in laboratories, although it is extremely rare and expensive. Natural green gold, known as "electrum," can be mined. Only a few jewelers have access to them, so this isn't something you'd expect to see when shopping for gold.
The buying process
Consider the following guidelines when choosing a dealer:
- Make an appointment with a trusted jeweler. Going to well-known and trusted stores like Cartier, Tiffany, Graff, and others is the simplest approach to find high-quality gold. They have a great reputation as reputable vendors who provide high-quality merchandise. However, some stores charge significantly higher prices for their goods, which may deter many customers.
- If you're seeking a low-cost option, check for independent merchants who also sell high-end items. Just keep an eye on who you're dealing with. By examining their credentials and certificates, you can ensure that you are dealing with a legitimate dealer.
- Always make comparisons. With independent dealers, a piece that may be found at a specific price at one shop can almost certainly be found for a cheaper price at another outlet. Always look for and compare costs at different stores. Yes, it may seem ideal to buy jewelry on the spur of the moment, the one that speaks to you. But the truth is that you can usually find the exact same thing for a considerably lower price somewhere else.
Pricing and quality certifications
The purity of gold determines its price. But how can you tell if the piece is pure or not? Here are some suggestions:
These are one-of-a-kind markings that are usually discovered on the item's unnoticeable portions (i.e. inner circle of the ring, backs of earrings).
Some markings will include the karatage, which denotes the amount of gold in the item, while others will include the purity percentage. The most popular purity markings used around the world are included in the table below:
KARATAGE PERCENT PURE GOLD KARAT MARK EUROPEAN MARK
41.70% 41.70% 10k 417
58.30% 58.30% 14k 585
75.00% 75.00% 18k 720
99.99% 99.99% 24k 999
Look for a gold hallmark that certifies the purity of the metal. They could be able to answer crucial questions like, "Is it real?" What material is it made of? The following are the most often-used quality markers around the world:
Type of metal: GF stands for gold filled, while GP stands for gold plated.
Pd – Palladium, Pt/Plat – Platinum, SS – stainless steel, S. Silver/Silver – Sterling Silver were utilized as base metals.
Make a calculation to see if your purchase is reasonable. What is the golden rule for estimating gold prices? What are the signs that you've been duped? How do you make sure you're getting a good deal?
Keep your thinking caps on because things are about to get mathematical:
To begin, learn the price of gold bullion. This relates to the current gold market price, which fluctuates on a daily basis. Jewelers display daily bullion rates to assist customers. Non-pure karat jewelry is normally sold in grams, while 24-karat pure gold is offered in ounces.
Calculate the cost of "how much" gold you own. Is a price of $1300 for an 18K piece of gold weighing 20g, for example, a good price?
Let's see what happens. If gold is selling for $42.19 per gram, your gold will cost you $632.85: (18/24)*20*42.19 = 632.85.
However, you're paying $1300 for the thing! Is that reasonable?
Other expenses should be considered. Jewelers are likely to add prices for other metals in the alloy, as well as labor. To cover these expenditures, plus the jeweler's profit margin, you should expect to pay at least twice the price of gold. In our example, $1300 is a quite reasonable price.
If the jewelry is produced specifically for you, expect to pay considerably more. You are not just paying for the gold in this case, but also for the design.