Most brides-to-be look at their engagement ring as one of the most precious and valuable thing they own. And this is not only because a diamond or more (you, lucky girl!) adorn their engagement ring, but because the ring is enriched with sentimental value, dreams, hopes and expectations.
Busy with planning their engagement party, wedding, finding the perfect dress and the right shoes to match the dress, many brides forget to seek their engagement ring appraisal. Yes, we all know that there’s no time now for practical thoughts, and you may even feel a little weird about trying to find the real value of your engagement ring, but trust us: there’s no better time like the present.
You need to search for your diamond ring appraisal because if you were to lose it or something would happen to it, you will regret deeply not doing your ring appraisal sooner. No one will take into account the sentimental value of your ring (although in a perfect world they should), so you need to have a document that proves your engagement ring appraisal.
What Is an Engagement Ring Appraisal?
First of all, you need to know that an appraisal is a piece of paper that attests the facts about your engagement ring and its value. It’s important to keep in mind that a diamond ring appraisal is not the same thing with the diamond grading report you usually receive from your jeweler. The report will tell the buyers everything they need to know about their diamond features. Ring appraisals attest the value of the entire jewelry, taking into consideration more than just the diamond (features like other stones, the metal etc.).
Ring appraisals and any other jewelry appraisals, as a matter of fact, must be performed exclusively by certified and accredited appraisers. This means that you need to find an appraiser that has an impressive reputation and great reviews, but most important, an appraiser who has a graduate degree in gemology and is member of a national appraisal society. For example, for a diamond ring appraisal NYC, you need to work with an appraisal company such as the New York Accredited Gemological Institute.
Why Should I Get One?
There are many reasons for which you should consider getting an engagement ring appraisal, besides finding out how much your fiancée has spent for your beautiful ring. This also is a good idea for those who buy the engagement ring and want to think of everything beforehand. Here are the main reasons you should get an appraisal of your ring:
Assesses the real value of your engagement ring – you really need to know this because it will help you insure your ring properly; this is important especially for antique or vintage rings.
Insures your ring for a correct amount of money - this would be the first reason why someone might want to get a diamond engagement ring appraisal; if anything where to happen to your ring (it gets lost, stolen, damaged etc.), the insurance (based on the appraisal) will save you from any regrets.
Provides proof to use in case your ring is stolen and recovered – the appraisal will prove that the ring the police found is yours.
Adds a rider (extension) to cover your ring – this is useful in case you have homeowners’ or renters’ insurance; the rider will cover your ring specifically based on your ring appraisal.
Helps with selling your ring – in case you want to sell your engagement ring, a diamond engagement ring appraisal is a must.
Helps you with the customs process – in case you want to travel in another country, the appraisal will come in handy.
When Do I Need One?
We recommend getting ring appraisals as soon as you buy or receive them. It’s important to have their value assessed at once, so you can benefit from insurance protection and all the other benefits that come with diamond ring appraisals.
We don’t suggest going to a diamond ring appraisal NYC as soon as your fiancée ends his proposal, but you can be sure that going next day to a certified appraiser is a move that can be considered “politically correct”. With so much wedding preparation coming your way and so many opportunities to lose your ring (if not worst) because of all the frenzy, you don’t want to take any chances.
Please note! If the engagement ring is worth less than $500 (auch!), you don’t need a ring appraisal.
How Does It Work?
Getting diamond ring appraisals is quite easy. The most important part is to trust your appraisal in the hands of a certified, accredited, reputable appraiser. Appraisers need to be members of national appraisal societies recognized by the Gemological Institute of America.
The appraisal process implies for the assessment to be done in front of you to make sure that your stone is not switched and the appraisal is accurate. Although you might think it’s a good thing to have the value of your ring inflated, it’s not. You could end up losing money on long term (your insurance company may buy another ring if your own it’s stolen and, even if you insured it for $3000, they will pay the actual price for it).
You should ask to see and make yourself familiar with a plot diagram, which usually includes details such the measurements of the stone and internal features. You could also try to agree on a value before you actually give the ring for appraisal (to have an insurance while the ring is in the hands of the appraiser). When you return to pick your ring, don’t forget to check and see if the stone matches the details on the diagram.
How Much Does It Cost?
As expected, this service doesn’t come free. The ring appraisal cost differs depending on the expertise of the appraiser, the time that he or she is going to dedicate to the process and also the complexity of their work. A diamond engagement ring appraisal may cost from $50 to $150 per hour.
It’s a good idea to ask about the minimum fee the appraiser takes for this type of service. However, we recommend stay away if the ring appraisal cost is too low considering the market, or if the fee is based on the percentage of your ring’s appraisal value. Reputable appraisers usually charge a flat rate, by the piece or by the hour.
Be Careful of Engagement Ring Appraisal and Insurance
It’s important to know that engagement ring appraisal and engagement ring insurance are two different things. Some appraisal agents may also offer insurance policies, but it is recommended to choose to insure your ring to an independent insurer. There’s no chance of bias there, so you will pay a proper amount of money for the insurance. An independent insurer will also guarantee you the best coverage for your ring.
There are different types of insurance policies such as:
Replacement policy – in case your ring will be lost, damaged or stolen, the insurance company guarantees a payment that will allow you to buy an identical ring (considering the current market values).
Actual cash value policy – the most common ring insurance option, this policy allows for your ring to be replaced at its current market value but minus any depreciation that might have occurred.
Valued-at policy – it allows you to receive the actual insurance amount, even if your ring has been appraised at a higher value than it is actually worth (such as an extra amount for the sentimental value).
How to Value Your Engagement Ring
Besides treasuring it for its immense sentimental value, you need to make sure you value your engagement ring according to official standards. If the ring has a diamond center stone, you will most certainly receive a diamond certificate or grading report from the jeweler.
For diamond ring appraisal NYC you should find an independent gemological laboratory such as New York Accredited Gemological Institute that claims that it founded the 4C criteria for diamond appraisal. 4C stands for color, cut, clarity and carat weight (size). These four characteristics will help the appraiser determine the value of your diamond.
Important! Never give any details regarding your ring when you take it to an independent appraiser. The lack of information will help you find out if their appraisal is accurate and if it’s based on their inspection and expertise.
How to Choose Professional Independent Jewelry Appraiser
Carefully! You need to always work with a certified, accredited appraisal company that has a team of professional inspectors. Check the company’s reputation and reviews and don’t believe everything they say on their website without doing some research first. The appraisers, although independent, need to have a degree and be a member of a national appraiser society.
Accredited Gemological Institute meets all these requirements and provides flawless engagement ring and other pieces of jewelry appraisal. Their gemologists have an outstanding education and always assess accurately the magical 4C of a diamond by using last generation equipment.
Appraise your engagement ring now at AGI! Find out more about the appraisal process and fees here by contacting us!