Investing In Gold And Silver For Capital Preservation And Appreciation

Valuing Your Scrap Gold A Step-By-Step Guide

You have likely seen the commercials. You have probably seen the ads. There are many companies that will buy your scrap gold pieces, including jewelry, dental crowns, and even coins. With the price per troy ounce near historic highs, the temptation to convert broken or useless scrap gold into cash is irresistible. The problem is, many people who own such items are unaware of their value. Even worse, they don't know how to calculate it.


You have likely seen the commercials. You have probably seen the ads. There are many companies that will buy your scrap gold pieces, including jewelry, dental crowns, and even coins. With the price per troy ounce near historic highs, the temptation to convert broken or useless scrap gold into cash is irresistible. The problem is, many people who own such items are unaware of their value. Even worse, they don\’t know how to calculate it.

Before you approach a buyer, make certain you know how much your scrap gold is worth based on current market prices. Otherwise, you\’ll leave yourself vulnerable to buyers who extend unreasonably low offers. We\’ll explain how to determine the value of your gold pieces below. The following steps may appear daunting, but the process is deceptively simple.

Step 1 – Categorize Your Pieces By Karats

On bracelets, necklaces, rings, and other pieces of gold jewelry, you\’ll find hallmarks. These are markings that reflect the gold content in the pieces. For example, you might see 14K (or 14kt) imprinted on a ring. Or, you may see 18K stamped on a watch. The \”K\” represents karats. You won\’t find these markings on most non-jewelry items. You\’ll need to have a jeweler test them for karatage.

Once you have determined the karatage of each piece, separate them into groups categorized accordingly. Place the 14K items in one pile, the 18K pieces in another, and so forth.

Step 2 – Weigh Each Group

Determine the weight of each group in grams. You can buy a small jeweler\’s scale for under $20 that will do this easily. If you own a scale that measures ounces, and prefer to avoid purchasing another scale, you can conduct a simple conversion from ounces to grams. A single ounce equals approximately 28.35 grams. So, if one group of scrap gold weighs 2.5 ounces, it weighs 70.875 grams. Do this for each group.

Step 3 – Find The Current Market Rate

You can find the market price of gold listed in the newspaper or online. Rates are listed per troy ounce, with a single troy ounce equaling approximately 31.103 grams.

One word of caution: avoid pulling the market price from a gold buyer\’s website, unless you are certain the buyer is trustworthy. Some companies will list a lower price, causing sellers to miscalculate the value of their scrap gold. Be wary.

Step 4 – Determine The Rate Per Gram

Convert the listed rate into a price per gram. This is done by dividing the price per troy ounce by 31.103. For example, if gold is currently selling at $1,200 per ounce, divide this rate by 31.103. In this case, the price per gram would be $38.58. If gold is selling for $1,300 per ounce, the price per gram would be $41.80.

Step 5 – Calculate The Aggregate Value Of Your Gold

To determine the total value of your scrap gold, you\’ll need to multiply the values of each group by the fineness of its gold. Fineness is dictated by karatage as follows:

24K = 1.000 fineness
22K = 0.917
20K = 0.833
18K = 0.750
16K = 0.667
14K = 0.583
10K = 0.417
8K = 0.333

As an example, suppose your group of 18K scrap gold items weighs 7 grams. Further suppose the price per troy ounce is $1,200. To find the value of the group, multiply the rate per gram ($38.58 from earlier) by the fineness of 18K gold (0.750). The value per gram for this group is $28.94. Next, multiply $28.94 by the group\’s 7 grams to arrive at $202.58. This is the value of the 18K group.

Perform the same calculation for each group, and add the values together to arrive at a total.

Determining the value of your scrap gold is relatively simple, though the process may seem intimidating. Use the step-by-step guide above to evaluate your collection before approaching a buyer.

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