Documentation and Return Policies
If you’re buying something that’s an authentic gem, it should come with documentation. Real jewelers aren’t going to sell you something that isn’t proven to be what it is. If you’re attempting to buy something and the vendor isn’t offering a certificate of authenticity or any documented background of the item, be skeptical.
Similarly, any legitimate vendor will offer you a time period to return the item. This shows that the vendor is confident enough that you’ll be satisfied with your purchase, and also indicates their confidence in the authenticity of the product. Anyone who doesn’t offer a return policy of at least two weeks should be suspect.
The Gold Test
Fortunately, it’s quite easy to tell if a gold product is actually gold. First of all, gold is not magnetic. If you purchase an item purported to be gold and it sticks to a magnet, you’ve been duped. Gold is also highly malleable, meaning that it’s easy to make a small dent in it. Try lightly biting into a small segment, and if it leaves an outline of a tooth, it’s likely that it’s actually gold. Furthermore, many gold items come with a stamp verifying authenticity and karat level. If an item doesn’t have this, that doesn’t mean it’s not gold, though. Finally, running the item across a ceramic plate will reveal whether or not it’s gold. If it leaves a black streak, it’s fake.
Many people want to believe they’re getting a good deal on something, but the reality is that jewelry holds its value really well. As such, it’s almost never sold below market value. If you’re being offered something at a price much lower than seems accurate, it’s a huge tell that the item isn’t what they’re claiming it is.
Jewelers in Michigan have seen varieties of scams over the years, and it’s best to follow these simple steps, or to check with an appraiser to see if your jewelry is legitimate.