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Posted: 8/19/2002 7:01:39 AM EDT
I’m going to be buying my fiance’ a new engagement ring soon and am hoping you guys could clear a few things up for me. I’ve been told that there is about 50% markup on most jewelry (especially diamond rings). Is this true? If so, what’s considered to be a fair price and what’s the best way to get a better deal than what is listed as the retail price. Will most places negotiate if you just walk in and tell them you will give them $3,000 for their $5,000 ring? How about places that sell rings online? Would you every buy one this way? Are the appraisals they show with the color, clarity and appraised value legit or is it a scam in most cases? Thanks for the info.
Link Posted: 8/19/2002 7:09:49 AM EDT
I give the stuff I like a real good look over, find something I like And offer 20% less. They say I'll have to ask the manager. Everytime has come back and said ok!
Link Posted: 8/19/2002 7:27:30 AM EDT
I have found that buying the diamond loose and then having it set is a good way to go. I found mine online and got a much lower price than I could have by buying it retail. The diamond certification will give you the ratings of the cut, weight (carat), clarity and color and is very important. A jewelry appraisal is less important except for insurance purposes. There are a number of online diamond merchants that allow you to search for a diamond by entering how much you want to spend and the specifications of the diamond you want. Shape, clarity, color etc. I used Van-Daaz and was very happy with them. [url]http://www.vandaaz.com/dmenu.htm [/url] Good luck.
Link Posted: 8/19/2002 1:23:49 PM EDT
hmmmm, taking advice on buying jewelry from a guy named [b]Fingers[/b], hmmmm. Along with a link...how convenient.[;D] He does make a valid point though. ByteTheBullet (-:
Link Posted: 8/19/2002 1:29:36 PM EDT
I'll never buy a diamond retail. The diamond racket is the biggest legal ripoff I can think of. Sorry I dont have any useful info, as I'm not savvy about jewelry buying. All I know is that the supply of diamonds is tightly controlled by the DeBeers cartel, and that they get marked up at least 100% from middleman to middleman.
Link Posted: 8/19/2002 2:28:02 PM EDT
If microsoft had the monopoly that debeers has on diamonds, we'd still be using windows 3.1 and paying $500.00 a copy for it. Believe it TXLEWIS BTW, same goes for intel. W/O AMD, we'd still be using the 486
Link Posted: 8/19/2002 2:51:57 PM EDT
I find something in my price range an I like offer half of the listed price and then dicker until I pay for whatever it is a ring, earrings,necklace. I then take the product and start hunting. I keep it in my pocket and go from store to store. I have narrowed this down to 5 stores. I compare the size and color and just how does it LOOK. You can pay for color,clarity and size it's all a compromise bigger is better than color and the right setting can hide a lot of flaws. Pull the gift out and compare with what they have. Don't tell them the price! It is the only way I can judge , SIDE BY SIDE. You may find one with better color for the same price etc.. When you have done all your shopping go back and dicker on the price if you cant get it down to what you got the first one for walk and be happy with the first purchase or go back to the 2nd choice. If you purchase from another store just bring the first one back. I have never had a problem with a return (At least 5 times) I have had to bring back to 3 different stores .
Link Posted: 8/19/2002 4:19:33 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 8/19/2002 4:23:52 PM EDT by Fingers]
ByteThe Bullet... I don't have any connections to the merchant I listed other than being a satisfied customer. They had the best prices when I was shopping around a couple of years ago, by a large margin and the service they provided was excellent. They are located in Montreal, Canada I think and I am in Las Vegas, NV. I needed a fair amount of hand holding buying $20K+ in diamonds over the internet and they did a very nice job and saved me thousands of dollars. I was just trying to answer his question and I happen to have a fair amount of expertise in this matter. Getting engaged has unfortunately been a bad habit of mine, I've done it about 4 times. If you were kidding, disregard all of the above.
Link Posted: 8/19/2002 4:51:36 PM EDT
I haven't bought diamonds online, but I did buy pearls and it was a great experience. They were a strand of Akoya cultured pearls AAA rated and confirmed by our appraiser, for a third the cost of B quality Mikimotos sold by the local jewelery stores. It was for our first anniversary. Wife got me a Kimber Eclipse. [:D] We are considering getting the wife a tanzanite ring and actually found some good deals on ebay at some of the ebay stores. You might want to check that route out. Just have everything appraised by an independent appraiser and remember that everything "appraises" for twice its real value. Congrats, BTW. [:)]
Link Posted: 8/19/2002 4:54:51 PM EDT
Oh, and with diamonds, cut is key. A good cut can make the diamond. Plus diamonds are priced by the tenth of the carat. a .80 and .89 carat diamond cost the same. There is a big jump between .99 and 1.0. Look to get a .x9 diamond.
Link Posted: 8/19/2002 5:11:50 PM EDT
%50 mark up you say,I'd say more like on the 100% + + side,go to a reputable pawn shop.
Link Posted: 8/19/2002 5:49:56 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 8/19/2002 5:52:25 PM EDT by faris]
I'm retired from the business now so............ The jewelry business prices by "Keystone" and "Delta" codes. Keystone is 50% markup, Delta is 100%. Most jewelry is "Delta", OR MORE. There are NO good deals unless you have a VERY close blood relative who will order at cost from a major wholesaler. If you're concerned about getting ripped off, demand a certificate of quality from the American Gemological Institute. This won't guarentee not getting ripped off on price, but it will on quality. As above, diamonds are not really rare at all, it's just that DeBeers and the diamond industry keep prices artificially high. The newer synthetic stones are getting increasingly difficult to tell from natural stones. Debeer's and the industry spend millions each year on scientific detection techniques, so they can claim "We can tell it's not a real diamond, so it's not as good". They know it's a matter of time before science is able to "grow" artificial diamonds that are indistinguishable from natural. The future big push in diamond industry advertising will be to move the public's perception to a "Our's are 100% natural, and there's a mystic to the 'real' thing". So, when science trumps them, they'll have convinced people that natural is somehow better than man-made.
Link Posted: 8/19/2002 5:53:33 PM EDT
Take a look at the LEO diamonds at Kay Jewelers... I did an immense amout of shopping around for the girlfriends engagement ring, and of every stone I looked at nothing compared to the LEO cut... the damn thing looked bigger, brighter and all around better than any other regular diamond of the same quality/size. I settled on a 1.04 carat, H color, VS1 with an ideal LEO cut... they wanted $7000 for it, and I got them down to $6100, and I feel like I did OK, since no other Jewler carries that particular cut. Fingers, what part of Vegas do you live in? We should get together at the range sometime.
Link Posted: 8/19/2002 7:23:28 PM EDT
Where are you in the US? I got a helluva deal on a ring at a shop located in WTC Dallas. You have to have a membership and spend x-thousand a year to shop there as I understand it. A family member has a membership, so I got lucky, IMO. My wife's ring kicks ass and we had it made exactly like she wanted. I agree with the buy a loose stone/stones first plan unless you see a built ring that just jumps out as perfect. I searched long and hard before making my purchase. The online places I looked into seemed reputable to me.
Link Posted: 8/19/2002 7:45:14 PM EDT
On another note... Stay away from "gimmicky" diamonds like "polar bear" and "lazar"...Both firms, and Im sure there are more, laser-etch an imprint onto the diamond with their logo and maybe a serial number. IMHO, this introduces a NEW 'flaw' into the diamond, which they try to pass-off as "unique". If you're looking for a good deal on a loose diamond, get in tight with your local synagogue...there you will find many GOA members who collect/invest etc.
Link Posted: 8/19/2002 7:46:39 PM EDT
I bought off the internet from www.moncheri.com (sorry I don't know how to parse) I got a .72ct Marquise H color VS2 in platinum with .32 of Baguettes for $2100. Moncheri promises that your ring will appraise for 2x what you pay for it. They sent me an appraisal done by them for $4600. I never go it appraised myself, but we did have the diamonds tested at Zales. I searched for months and couldn't find a better deal. hth tony
Link Posted: 8/19/2002 7:59:57 PM EDT
Link Posted: 8/19/2002 8:10:06 PM EDT
As a GIA certified Gemmologist with 30 years experience, I would give you this advice. Do your homework, and deal with a reputable diamond dealer. Most jewelry is sold to the public at triple 'key'(three times the wholesale price). So buyer beware. One of my buddies that bought a ring from a 'schmuck', and asked me to trade it in for a new one, because he was getting engaged to a good friend of mine. He told me he paid $13,500 for a 2.xx carat Marquis diamond with a platinum setting. I examined the ring and stone, and my heart sank. My friend was a medic in Vietnam and was head shot. This piece of crap ripped him for $12,000. I went to my wholesaler and told him the story, as a goodwill gesture he gave me $2000 for a trade-in for a beautiful 1.250 Ct. RB in a platinum setting. My buddy's mistake cost him $11,500. I sold him the stone and setting for my cost, $6xxx, minus the $2000 I got for the previous 'diamond' that was nearly unsellable, and he got a beauty. ORLL: educate yourself, and keep your F**KING head down when the lead is flying. GIB187th PS: This a public service announcement, I don't want your business.
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