By Anthony DeMarco
Deciding on the best time to sell your diamond involves both financial and emotional matters. Even if you’re not emotionally attached to the ring anymore, it might take some time until you feel ready to let it go. Once you feel it’s the right time, there are a few key tips to help better your chances of getting the best possible price for your gem. Whether you are ready to sell or you’re just exploring your options, you should be aware of how timing can affect how much you will get for your diamond ring.
Understanding Diamond Resale Price
One thing you need to know first is that unless the diamond in your possession is unique in some way (size, color, clarity, cut and provenance) you will not receive more than what you paid for it. Just like cars, diamond jewelry loses a big portion of its retail value the moment you walk out the store. When looking to resell a pre-owned diamond, it’s reasonable to expect around a 67% discount to the retail price originally paid for the item. Buy-back price is significantly lower than retail price because the buyer needs to compensate operating costs and other business expenses. To learn more about diamond resale price, we recommend reading the article Exploring Diamond Pricing: Recycled Diamonds.
Diamond Trading Seasonality
Like most products except a handful of goods like food, diamonds have seasonal buying trends. Diamond jewelry demand is directly tied to life cycle or milestone events, such as weddings, births, anniversaries, graduations and religious events. But at the same time, jewelry sales in the United States are driven by calendar events.
Some months are busier than others for diamond trading. Knowing the seasonality of diamond jewelry sales helps in obtaining the best price. There are three main events in the calendar that drive jewelry sales: the Holidays season, Valentine’s Day and Mother’s Day. Unsurprisingly, November to Christmas is the busiest season for the diamond trade. There’s also a spike prior to Valentine’s Day.
Why does diamond buying seasonality matter when selling a diamond? Industry professionals that might be interested in buying pre-owned items will be more likely to pay a premium for diamonds prior to these main calendar events. For example, if you sell your diamond during the September-October run-up to the Holiday season, you’ll be more likely to get a better price than in June or July.
Keeping an Eye on the Market Trends
While calendar events stay the same, general trends for polished diamonds price may experience fluctuations over the years. It’s advisable to keep track of the diamond market price and be on the lookout for price drops or peaks. The last big drop in the diamonds price took place in 2015, but according to Bain & Company, the historical long-term price trend for polished diamonds stays positive.
Is My Diamond In Demand?
Diamonds might not be forever, but their attributes sure are. Diamond qualities like carats, shape, cut grade, color, and clarity, will affect the value of your stone. More importantly, if a specific attribute of your diamond has a higher demand in the market, you’re more likely to get a better price for it. Below are some diamond attributes to have in mind when figuring out if it’s a good moment to resell your diamond.
- Diamond Size
- Diamond Shape
- Diamond Cut
- Fancy Colored Diamonds
The most noticeable thing about a diamond is its size and for most people, bigger is always better. For decades now, the most popular size has remained around 1 carat. Smaller diamonds will be harder to sell than pieces featuring a center stone that is 1 carat or over.
Having the type of diamond that is in demand also helps and this is often determined by its shape. The most popular diamond shape is by far the round brilliant cut followed way behind by princess and cushion fancy shapes. Having a round diamond should provide a good price and quick payoff. However, an unusual fancy shape may result in a great payoff. It will just take more time to find the jeweler who has a need for this. Again timing is important.
When discussing the most important attribute of a diamond consumers will likely say that size while jewelry professionals will almost unanimously say it’s the cut. The diamond cut is often confused with its shape but it is different. The cut refers to the diamond’s proportions, symmetry, and polish. The beauty of a diamond depends more on cut than any other factor. A good diamond cut enhances a diamond’s brilliance, fire, and scintillation. These are difficult terms to absorb but the most important thing to know is that a proper cut enhances the beauty of a diamond.
These diamonds are rarer than white diamonds and thus more valuable. In recent years these diamonds have been in high demand at auctions, which has trickled down to the consumer level. Pink diamonds are the most popular but yellow and blue are also favored. While more expensive than white they hold their value better than the more common diamonds on the market.
The bottom-line is that when it comes to selling your diamond timing may not be everything but it surely is a very important element to consider.
About the Author
Anthony DeMarco is a freelance writer and editor who covers the luxury jewelry and watch industry for several publications, including Forbes.com the Financial Times, Hong Kong-based JewelleryNetAsia and the Italian jewelry magazine, VO+. He also has a blog covering the jewelry and watch industry, Jewelry News Network.