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Why can't you just tell me what it's worth?

Lesley Skinner FGA DGA FJVA

Ever wondered why a jewellery valuer cannot give you a valuation figure ‘on the spot’, after all that is how it appears to work on the TV!

The reality is, it’s not as simple as this, a wealth of knowledge and expertise, combined with market research and experience have all contributed to the value conclusion.

When a member of the Jewellery Valuers Association® undertakes a Valuation there are a number of factors that need to be recorded, assessed and researched before a value can be determined that can be justified and able to withstand scrutiny if the valuer's report is ever called into question.

There are many variables to be taken into consideration; from the item’s overall dimensions and gross weight, metal colour, purity and hallmark, to the quality of manufacture and workmanship, setting techniques and the skill level involved.

Valuer looking through microscope

Each and every gemstone and diamond must be measured, their weights estimated using specific formulae, their origin must be determined, for instance.. are they natural, if so, have they been treated, are they man-made or are they composites made by cleverly combining a small piece of natural to a larger piece of manmade gemstone, often created to deceive.

Then the quality and colour of each gemstone and diamond must be assessed in detail using international standards and described in such a way that a replacement stone would be a good and fair match if any were to go missing.

All of this is essential before costs can be researched for each component, then market data such a bullion and exchange rates are recorded, market conditions are also taken into consideration, the item's age, style, desirability and rarity.

If this sounds like a lengthy process, that’s because it is and your JVA Registered Valuer® will take great care at every stage to ensure your Valuation Report is ‘Fit for Purpose’. In the event of an item being lost or stolen this will also help your insurer help you source a replacement on a ‘like for like’ basis.

Turquoise brooch

About the author:

Lesley Skinner BA (Hons) FGA DGA is one of Scotland’s longest established jewellery valuers, based at Jan Allan Jewellers in Bothwell, just outside Glasgow, providing jewellery valuations for insurance and Confirmation of Will to members of the public, solicitors, insurance companies, and local authorities.