In the first part of our series on cashing in your gold, we looked at how the exchange process works. But with even the corner store now offering to buy your unwanted jewelry, how do you find the right buyer? NY1's Tara Lynn Wagner filed the following Money Matters report.
The signs are everywhere -- websites, windows, sandwich boards, even the corner bodega -- all displaying those three little words: "We Buy Gold."
"With gold prices over $1,300 an ounce, everyone's a gold buyer now," says Kenneth Conn of Gem Pawnbrokers.
So how do you find the right buyer for your unwanted baubles? You can start by getting an assessment from a neutral appraiser.
"Someone who is independent, who is not seriously looking to buy what you have and tell you want the prices are. It may cost you a few dollars to do that but it may save you hundreds of dollars in value," says Gemological Appraisal Labs of America Owner Kenneth Lejman.
Next, you should decide if your piece has resale value -- like an heirloom or designer piece -- or if it's destined for the scrap heap, which by no means tarnishes its worth.
"We take broken gold, scrap gold, missing items, one earring. It doesn't matter. It's all gold. It all has a value," says Conn.
Ultimately, it all gets melted together -- first into a crude looking lump and finally a refined shiny gold bar. Even though you're selling and buying, you still need to shop around. Visit a few gold buyers or pawn shops to compare offers or call for a quote.
"People want to know what their items are really worth and how much they can get paid for it and what's the highest amount they're gonna get and from what organization," says U.S. Gold Buyers Spokesman Jose Caba.
In addition to their walk-in window, Caba says USGoldBuyers.com offers a mail in service, an option being advertised by a growing number of companies looking to capitalize on the gold rush. However, some experts caution against this type of deal.
"That to me would be a risk, because if you don't know what it is you have, you're expecting somebody that you've never seen, evaluate this piece for you," says Lejman.
Regardless of who you choose to sell to, experts say check their credentials and use a little a common sense, especially when it comes to that bodega.
"Why would you go to a bodega to sell gold? That's not the business they're in. They're sitting there making sandwiches. What knowledge do they have about buying gold for you and giving you a fair price," says Conn.
Finally, gold prices may have pulled back a bit since peaking before the new year, but if you have a piece or two you're looking to sell, buyers say the scales are still tipped in your favor.