Did you know: more diamonds are sold before Valentine’s Day than any other time of the year? February might be a popular month to buy jewellery, but shopping for a loved one in preparation for Valentine’s Day can be stressful. Understanding your partner’s tastes, learning about how gemstones are graded, and finding reputable jewellery stores could be a daunting experience. It could also end up costing you much more than you bargained for.
If you’re planning to buy jewellery for someone special this Valentine’s Day, BBB offers the following tips:
Do Your Research. Give yourself time to figure out how much you want to spend, and to carefully review limited-time Valentine’s Day deals. Consult bbb.org to find reputable jewellers with verifiable marketplace histories. Review complaints and customer reviews to see how they treat their customers and to get a better understanding of their business practices.
Educate Yourself. Before you shop, consult multiple resources to help you understand key industry terminology – such as the four C’s of diamond quality – and ensure you have a practical knowledge of how gemstones are graded.
Request a Purity Check. Before buying gold jewellery, don’t be afraid to request a purity check. Most reputable jewellers will offer to provide this service for you, before you finalize your purchase. Some might even have a purity machine installed in their store. Walk away if the quality of the gold you’re looking at can’t be verified.
Review the Warranty and Store Policies. A majority of jewellers will offer warranties or return policies of some kind. Ensure you know and understand all the retailer’s policies and warranty information before you make your purchase. Warranties might add to the cost of a piece, but if it’s expensive or made of highly pure gold, you have some protection in the event that any damages occur. In addition, find out the jeweller’s return or exchange policies. If you had to return a piece, would you receive a refund or store credit?
Take Precautions Against Fraud. Be cautious about any store offering discounts of more than 50 percent. You might find that the discounted price is actually the average retail price elsewhere. When it comes to diamonds, insist that your stones be accompanied by an independent grading report from a respected lab.
Consider Synthetic Diamonds. Are you looking for something sparkly, but want to avoid gems from conflict free zones? Do you dislike the look of simulated diamonds like cubic zirconia or moissanite? Consider looking at synthetic or lab-produced diamonds. Man-made diamonds are approximately 20 to 40 percent less expensive, but are chemically the same as mined diamonds. While a gemologist may not be able to share with you the difference between mined and synthetic diamonds, a jeweller is required to inform prospective buyers of their diamond’s origin.