As the impact of lockdown continues, some people are looking to raise cash by selling off their scrap gold or precious metals for sale - yet it may be at a high price.
Gold values are at an all-time high with an ounce of pure gold worth £1,310 'spot' price, the price that the dealer can sell for on a specific day and at a specific time.
South West gold dealer Phil Williams* said buyers need to do their research so that they are not short-changed by less than scrupulous people dealing in gold online or door to door.
"This is proving to be a busy time for us at the moment," Phil, of Gold Traders UK Ltd, said. "For a couple of reasons, people are worried about money and are searching their homes for gold jewellery, coins or other items that they no longer need or want. The second reason is that the dealing can be done online and via post so there are very limited infection risks around it.
"The downside is it’s easy to become a victim of unscrupulous dealers who will not pay you a fair price for your gold especially if you are doing this for the first time. There has also been at least one out-of-down dealer going door to door offering to buy gold - at a price which I believe to be unfair. Once your gold is gone, it's gone."
Phil has an established gold-dealing business which was created 13 years ago and he deals mainly online. He buys a range of items from nine-carat gold jewellery and currently pays around £14.40 per gram (at time of writing). Once a client has submitted items, he offers them a price and then pays promptly.
"I’ve always prided myself on treating clients fairly. I offer them more than 90 per cent of the spot value on any one day - in the past, I’ve seen traders offer as little as 40 per cent of that value. The latest door-to-door dealer was offering a low percentage. If you don't know the right questions to ask, how will you know if you are getting a good deal?"
His advice to anyone who is thinking of selling their scrap precious metal is:
- Ask the right questions eg. what’s the spot value today?
- Ask what percentage of that value you will receive?
- Check the answers by doing your own research online before you commit.
- Read reviews of the dealers you are interested in to get a feel for their customer service.
- Get a couple of estimates from different dealers to see who is offering you the best deal.
- Check there are no hidden charges which become apparent later eg postage and packaging.
- Don’t go ahead if you get no answers in a timely manner.
"I just want people to know that there are risks if you just panic and send your scrap gold off to the first dealer you see online. By taking a little more time and perhaps asking around your contacts for a recommendation, you may get a much better outcome," Phil said.
* Please be aware for reasons of security Phil Williams is a pseudonym.
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