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Do you really believe this?  Many of these establishments base their selling philosophy on the premise that most people that buy these diamonds will not have them appraised thereafter. Some may do so only to find out to their dismay that they are not worth twice the price.  They usually will do nothing about it except never return for additional purchases. Others—a small percentage—will take them back, and the vendor will give them a refund if they wish.  That small percentage will have little effect on the overall scheme of misrepresentation. The purchaser may receive a value commensurate with the purchase price, but this is hardly the “twice the value” bargain price it was purported to be.  More times than not, the merchandise is also of inferior quality and misrepresented in that realm as well.


We sometimes fear having an important diamond switched by some unscrupulous jeweler. Many times, sentiment about an engagement ring or family heirloom can be as important as market value. Most jewelers are honest and ethical merchants. Some may charge more than others (sometimes a lot more!), but switching doesn’t happen very often—still, it can happen.

To safeguard you from this experience, find a reputable appraiser who can give you a definitive description of your diamonds. This should include the shape, millimeter dimensions, carat weight, color, clarity and cutting grades. The critical element is to have a plotted diagram—a blueprint of the diamond. This will show the internal and external characteristics of the stone—inclusions (size, configuration and location), blemishes, damage and any peculiarities. Having all of this will preclude anyone from possibly substituting your diamond with another.

In addition, if the diamond is ever stolen and recovered by an enforcement agency, you will be able to claim your diamond with this absolute identification; otherwise, it will be auctioned off at their next sale. If you choose not to obtain an appraisal, at least take a close-up photo of all of your valuables.

An American Gem Society Certified Gemologist or Certified Gemologist Appraiser is capable of handling this for you.