SELLING YOUR GOLD 101 - Your Top 5 Questions Answered
1) What is old gold?

It's simply manufactured karat gold jewellery that’s either broken or one of those items that have been sitting in a drawer and not worn for years. It could be just one earring, a broken gold chain or a ring an old boyfriend bought you years ago, as long as its karat gold we will buy it no matter how little or how much you may have. Gold coins should not be considered at old gold because they may can have a rarity value that will exceed the gold content of the coin. I would first check ebay for current pricing then call a reputable coin dealer. Coin dealers will often have clients who will purchase these coins right away and may only charge as little as 5%.

2) How can I tell if my articles are actually karat gold?

KARAT GOLD - Examine your articles closely, a magnifying glass will certainly help. All manufactured karat gold jewellery in Canada and USA should have a “karat stamp” marked right on the article. Karat stamps may be, 9k 10k 14k 18k 22k or pure gold which is 24k. Many other countries stamp their gold with a number rather than a karat stamp, both mean the same thing. For example 10k = 10/24 = 41.6% pure gold and these items are marked with the number “416” therefore 18k = 18/24 = 75% pure gold and these items would be marked “750”. These two factors represent the gold purity or fineness, this is very important because 14k gold is worth 40% more than 10k gold and 18k gold is worth 80% more than 10k gold. If you’re not sure what your gold is, than it's very important you find a reputable buyer.

COSTUME GOLD – Many articles are made to look like real gold but are not solid karat gold. Gold filled jewellery has a thin layer of actual karat gold attached to a base metal (usually brass or copper) and the actual gold weight must be 1/20thof the total weight of the item. Often used in pocket watches, bracelets and chains amongst other things, gold filled items contain much more gold than plated items but still not enough to be acceptable items for purchase. In Europe they call this rolled gold. Watch for markings like “1/20 14k gold filled” or 10k G.F.
Gold plated jewellery is created using an electro-chemical process whereas an extremely thin layer of gold is applied onto a base metal. This plating solution can be comprised of any karat gold, you can get 14k gold plated even 24k gold plated. Markings to look for include , 10k G.E. meaning 10k gold electroplate or 14k RGP which means rolled gold plate or 18k HGE meaning hard gold electroplate, these articles are not acceptable for purchase. Gold plated articles will often show areas of wear, usually these are the areas of an item that are susceptible to contact with other surfaces and the base metal starts to show.
Vermeil is actual sterling silver that has been gold plated, the value of these articles is determined by the price of silver. Since refining charges are so high for silver, it makes little sense to the sell any silver products when the silver price is below $30.00 per ounce, presently Jay Johnston Jewellers is NOT PURCHASING SILVER.

NO STAMP – Most likely if there is no stamp at all, the article is not karat gold, the one exception can often be rings, where the karat stamp has been removed because of sizing.

OTHER CLUES – If any of your articles are set with rhinestones (stones that have a foil backing attached to the stone) your piece isn’t karat gold and if there are any stones that are set with glue (no metal covering any of the top of the stone) than your piece is not karat gold.

MAGNETS – any article (excluding chain clasps) that attracts a magnet is not karat gold.
F) NOT SURE? - we will test your gold at no charge, explain the process to you, and you can see the results right in front of your eyes, this can be very entertaining and you will know exactly what you have.

3) Where's the best place to sell my gold?

ABC news stated that one of the most important factors you should consider when selling your gold is to know who you are selling to. They advise you to check out only those buyers who are listed with the Better Business Bureau (BBB). The reason is that the BBB can tell you if a particular buyer has had complaints lodged against them and also if those complaints have been resolved, Jay Johnston Jewellers has a A+ rating from the BBB which is their highest rating.
JEWELLER vs GOLD BUYER - Many gold buyers come and go in a relatively short period of time. Some gold buyers set up shop in a town just for a few days, these types of buyers don't worry too much about their reputation. I actually visited one buyer like this who set up shop in a hotel here in London Ontario one weekend, after finding out how much they were paying for scrap gold the manager gave me his business card, which stated his name as "Diamond Dave" , how professional is that? Also, do you remember that guy on TV asking you to mail off your gold to him? He was a paid actor for a company called "Dollars4Gold". They claimed to offer the highest price for gold in the country, in fact they said if you find a higher price they would double it, all you had to do is slip your gold into an envelope and mail it off to them. Well that just didn't sit right with me, knowing that if they doubled my payouts they would be in a serious minus situation! So in January 2010 I sent them an assortment of 10k and 14k scrap gold just to see what dollar amount they would offer . I had a person witness this procedure and I told her that I would pay her $187.00 if she sold this amount of gold to me that day. So we put the gold in an envelope and mailed it away. Two weeks later I received their cheque in the mail in the amount of just $51.93 Thankfully most of these types of gold buyers no longer exist but there still are a few. Very few gold buyers have been in business for more than 10 years whereas the Johnston family has been in the jewellery business in London for over 98 years and Jay Johnston for more than 36 years. The biggest reason why I would choose a jeweller is the fact that most all jewellers will want to make you into a permanent customer whereas a gold buyer knows you probably won't be back again. One of the reasons why I buy gold is to bring people into my store who would not otherwise have been there. Over the years I have realized return business from hundreds of people who have sold me their gold. I treat that return business as a complement and it certainly is - always my pleasure.
HOME PARTIES - For awhile home parties were popular for people who wished to sell their gold. They indeed were profitable for the host. Often unannounced to those selling their gold, the host would receive a 10 to 15% cut of the proceeds paid out by the gold buyer. That could account for a much lower payout than what otherwise could be expected.
GEMSTONES - Most gold buyers are interested primarily in the weight of the gold, therefore items set with various gemstones are more of an annoyance than of extra value. Many gold buyers lack the expertise needed to properly assess gemstones and their value. Jewellers will often offer a higher price for an item which is still wearable and fashionable especially if these items can be resold. It is true that most items set with very small diamonds are not considered higher in value, unless the items can be resold. Small diamonds can be removed by our goldsmith and returned back to you, the cost to remove diamonds is $5.00 per stone, items that contain larger stones which are claw set, can usually be removed and returned to you while you wait and at no charge. Most gold buyers do not offer this service.

4) Who will give me the best price?

Firstly, all buyers are going to make money from your transaction, they have to in order to stay in business. Most all old gold will eventually end up at a refinery where the refiner melts and separates all the metals from your gold. This is a fairly costly procedure but the refiner not only gets the gold, he gets the other metals that are alloyed with the gold like copper, silver, nickel and zinc. The cost of this refining process obviously has to be passed on to the seller.
Most people believe that the buyer paying the highest price per gram is the one to sell to, so they call different buyers to find out what their paying per gram. I have found this to be the minor part of the equation, the most important factor is correctly assessing the proper karats of your gold, remember earlier when I said that 14k gold is worth 40% more than 10K and 18k is worth almost 80% more than 10k? Unscrupulous gold buyers can easily tell you something is 10k when it is actually 14k, that would account for a far greater difference in the overall price compared to a few cents more in their price per gram. This is why we assess your gold, right in front of you, so you can rest assured that you are getting the most monies for your gold.

OUR GUARANTEE - My advice would be for you to check out at least one buyer before you see us. We are fair, most customers have told us that we have paid up to 35% more than some of our competition but in lieu of this fact we promise to surpass our competitions price by at least 3%.

5) What do I do now?

1) Check your jewellery and try to eliminate the costume jewellery from the karat gold jewellery, but if you are unsure bring it with you and we will test it for you at no charge.

2) You have the option of calling another gold buyer and telling them that you would like to get an estimate of value for your old gold. Once you have done that you can either call Jay Johnston Jewellers at 519-660-4848 and make an appointment with Mr. Johnston or drop into the store anytime Monday through Friday 11am to 5:30pm.

3) If you're bringing in just a few items the whole process should take less than 15 minutes, after the assessment has been finished we will pay you the agreed upon price in cash. Items such as watches must have the movements removed before an assessment can be done, sometimes this cannot be done while you wait.

4) Bring your identification, we would prefer some picture identification but we will accept other ID as well, you will then be asked to sign a receipt stating that you are the sole owner of the gold and how much your were paid for your gold.

5) We have very comfortable surroundings, we are in the Citiplaza mall in downtown London, we would appreciate your business and we will try hard to entice you to be one of our regular customers.


I TRY TO MAKE YOUR EXPERIENCE A PLEASURABLE ONE. People want good advice, one thing that many customers like is when I tell them that they shouldn't sell me something, this happens all the time and there are many reasons for this.