Jewelry can be a good investment, an elegant fit, something special to receive, a delight to wear for years. it can also be an expensive mistake. Wise consumers will follow BBB advice when they are going to buy jewelry of any kind: If you don't know the merchandise, know the merchant.
Here are some suggestions:
*Check with the local BBB for a reliability report on the seller. *Ask neighbors and friends for recommendations, and if possible, shop around before buying. *If a warranty is offered, determine what is covered and who is the warrantor. Always get this information in writing. * If buying on credit, be sure all credit terms are apelled out, including the annual percentage rate. *Determine the seller's policy on refunds, exchanges, repair or replacement. *When buying a diamond, be sure to ask for a written statement of its weight in carats, and, if possible, a statement of its quality (color, clarity and cutting). *When buying a gemstone, ask if the original color has been altered or the stone treated. Is it permanent? *Be sure to read any tags and markings of gold and silver items for their content, e.g. 14K gold, sterling, silver-plated, etc., and for the manufacturer's trademark. *Ask the jeweler for care and cleaning instructions for any jewelry you purchase. *The Federal Trade Commission administers guides for the jewelry industry.
A copy may be obtained by writing the FTC, Washington, DC 20580.