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Please Help Me Evaluate This Purchase


leslie41
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Hello,

I am new to this forum.

 

I am looking at buying a 2.01 ct. ring from a private party. The stone is EGL certified. Now, I have spent the entire morning reading this board, and I now understand that EGL certification is not the most desirable, and the the color/clarity gradings are more than likely not truly accurate. I am working on a very tight budget, and have not been able to find something within my price range, so this may be attractive, but that's where I need your advice. The seller said they purchased this ring in 2006 from Ultra Jewelry for $9,000, and they are now asking $5,000. My original budget was $8500, but at that time, I wanted around 2.30 carats. So this fits my price range.

 

Here is a link to a picture of the EGL Certificate & obline report:

http://imagehost.vendio.com/bin/viewimage....g,Appraisal.jpg

 

 

If that link doesn't work, here is the information:

 

Weight: 2.01 ct

Shape: Round Brilliant

Color: H

Clarity: I1

Measurements: 7.87 - 7.78 x 5.16mm

Depth: 65.9

Table: 57.0

Crown: 16.0

Pavilion: 44.3

Girdle: Thin to Thick faceted

Polish: Very Good

Symmetry: Good

Fluorescence: None

Culet: None

Cut Grade (This is blank)

Lot: (There is a number - is this important information?)

Comments: Girdle inscribed (Again...there is a long EGL number here)

UGS Appraisal Value $14430.00

 

 

Here is what is important to me:

The most important, is I want the stone to have bling, fire, shine, brilliance, sparkle, and I want it 2 carats or above. Since I am on a very limited budget, I realize I will have to make compromises for a large stone. I am not so concerned about seeing the inclusions, because I've never looked very close at anyone else's ring, and I don't expect anyone will look at my ring under a loop. I expect that the setting will detract some from any visible inclusions. I do not want to pay extra for value in the stone that I cannot see, unless it gives me more BLING and SPARKLE. I don't expect to be buying a stone for future resale value, but I of course don't want to buy something that is not a good value to begin with.

 

Can someone please tell me what they think about this purchase? I am grateful for any advice you can provide.

Leslie

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Leslie,

I know that size and sparkle are important to you, so with that I would say than an I1 clarity is not the best grade stone you should be looking at. Keep in mind that an I1 will likely have visible inclusions or flaws, and the color H may hide those blemishes. When purchasing such a large stone you must understand that larger is not always better. I have purchased diamonds online with a very professional jeweler who will walk you through the process over the phone or in his office. Michaeljay.com. I'm sure this website will be very helpful to you and I know that you will be able to find both the size, price,and sparkle on a GIA certified stone that will make you happy without leaving you unsure. Good Luck!

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Leslie,

 

Sorry to be the bearer of bad news but I strongly suggest you avoid this diamond.

 

A 2.00 carat round should have a spread of around 8.15 mm.

This diamond is cut so deep that it faces up at only 7.83 mm. In effect it will look like a 1.75 ct stone in a ring.

 

What's worse: It will perform poorly away from bright jewelry store lights. Those crown and pavilion percentages translate to appx 36.7/41.5 angles. GIA would give this diamond a 'Good' in cut (which is not so good) and on a scale of 0-10 (0 being the best) AGS predicts it to earn a grade of 7.

 

In short, there was a reason this diamond was not sent to a first-tier lab: A buyer seeing either of the above evaluations would never purchase it.

 

It's possible to find GIA graded I-J, SI-I1 diamonds in the range of your original budget at/near 2cts. I suggest this path would bring you better value for your money.

Edited by JohnQuixote
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I must apologize for not completely reading your post. I had neglected to see what was really important in a diamond to you . Okay the 2ct. diamond is well priced, has a good color, but is terribly flawed. The apprasial is most likely not correct due to the large amount of flawed stones that are available on the market and their lack lack of desirability by diamond admirers. However, I must state that brillance, fire, and sparkle are the result of a well cut diamond,( it has nothing to do with the color or grade) so I must insist that you find the optimal proportions of a round cut diamond in order to see if this diamond is worth the buck. A flawed diamond, color H , I1 grade, has the ability to sparkle as much or more than a VVS H that is poorly cut. It's all about the cut and how well light is dispersed through the diamond. So I stress you must do your homework and find the optimal proportions for an ideal round cut diamond. Those proportions in comparsion with your diamond will give you a definitive answer. If the proportions are within range, you've just found yourself a wonderful diamond that is within your price range and meets your requests. I hope this helps out some. B)

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Hi Leslie!

I'm going to agree with John on this one. I would stay away from this diamond at all costs.

 

It does bring up an important aspect of diamond shopping. I love cars, so let's use cars as an example.

If someone has a $20,000 budget, and they want to buy a Porsche, they're likely to be very disappointed. If, on the other hand, they shop for Toyota, or a Chevrolet, they will get a brand-new shiny car that will likely give them many years of trouble-free service.

 

Shoppers of round brilliant, colorless, well cut two carat diamonds with a budget under $10,000 are likely to be disappointed in the quality of the diamonds they see.

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Wow, what great information you have all given me. I did go look at this two carat H/I1 stone that I am asking about, and in the end, I walked away from it. Under a loop, tons of black spots, which didn't bother me so much (again, thinking about my budget). John, I especially appreciated your remarks about the stone appearing in a ring like a 1.75 diamond because of the cut, which I would have never recognized. You recognized what was important to me, size and sparkle, and your advice was ringing in my mind. And Tamorga's advice that even a flawed diamond would sparkle brilliantly if it were well cut, also remained with me, since it's the sparkle, and not the lack of flaws, that is most important to me.

 

I am talking to a diamond wholesaler here who's family is quite large in this business, but he himself is just starting out. He says that the diamond market is bad right now, there are no buyers because of the economy, and sellers have lots of inventory, so he tells me that this is a great time to find what I am looking for. While I certainly do agree with Lauren's Porsche analogy, and that I am a Champagne shopper on a beer budget, this wholesaler is telling me that diamond buying is more like the failing real estate market here in Florida: Tons of inventory of multimillion dollar houses being dumped at unbelieveably low prices just to find a buyer. He is young and motivated, and has been spending a lot of time with me, giving me good information that echos much of what I have read on these boards, so he seems to be reliable and honest, and genuinely trying to earn my business.

 

He seems to understand what I am looking for, and is not trying to "upsell" me out of my budget. He is going to show me a few stones this weekend. I am still hoping to find that "mansion in foreclosure" that fits both my desires and my budget, and John indicated in his post that I should be able to find something in my price range if I looked hard enough. I am going to e-mail this board again for your expert advice once I have seen the stones.

 

Leslie

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Many red flags here.

 

The biggest is that I flatly disagree with his premise that inventories are high and dealers are dumping. Good stones are damn hard to find and, with the falling dollar, dealers are simply selling to customers overseas. The market in India is booming. Diamonds aren’t perishable and they’re easy to ship around. The people who are going out of business aren’t the ones holding diamond inventory and I see no fire sales by those that are.

 

The other one is the repeated use of the word ‘wholesaler’. Back when I went to business school, selling things one at a time to the end consumer was called retailing. Last I checked this hadn’t changed. Not that there’s anything wrong with retailing but telling you something else is starting out with a lie. If he is in the business of selling things to stores who then resell them to customers, which is what wholesalers do, and he’s offering a direct discount sale in competition to them, he’s lying to his other customers who, by the way, are presumably bigger customers for him than you. If he’ll lie to them, why do you think he won’t lie to you? If he’s not in that business, what in the world do they mean by ‘wholesaler’?

 

You’re setting yourself up for trouble here. Go back and reread John and David’s excellent advice. If you still insist on hoping for a mispriced bargain from either an ignorant or desperate seller, insist on having it graded and appraised by an INDEPENDENT appraiser who is working for you and not the seller.

 

Neil

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Great point Neil!

 

Although it might seem common sense for that a weak US economy would make diamond prices fall, the opposite is true. Diamond prices are at record levels, and supply is more difficult than I can ever remember before.

 

 

Also a great point about the term wholesale. If someone is buying one diamond for their love (or fiancé), wholesale just doesn't work. You need service, you need someone to stand behind the product. You need someone who can make a great ring.

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Geesh, you guys are being a little hard on me here. Perhaps I used the wrong term by saying "wholesaler." He does not have a freestanding retail store. He is part of an "outlet" type establishment, where there are many diamond dealers. His family has an established business and reputation in our area for 20 years. He himself, is just starting out. They go overseas and pick out the diamonds themselves and bring them back, some get certified, some don't, and they sell to retail stores and consumers alike. Again, his family has an established business and following for 20 years, and is well known in this area.

 

He seems very eager to earn my business, and I have been impressed with the time he has spent with me educating me. The information he has given me echoes exactly what I have been reading on this board, more so than any other retailer I've experienced. He has spent more time with me than any retail store I've been in. He is the only one who has respected my budget, as challenging as it is, and not tried to upsell me, or get me to spend more money. I've asked him to try to find something that fits my needs, in my price range, and he's been working at trying to come up with something that will make me happy. Other sellers have said, "sorry, I can't help you."

 

Finally, I am buying just the diamond from him, not the ring. I have a friend who is a jewelry designer who is custom making the mounting/ring for me as a gift.

 

When I get the specifications on what I am being shown, I will come back here and post them for your advice again before I make any decisions.

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I'm sorry if I was hard on you. My advice is only meant to assist you in your purchase.

this wholesaler is telling me that diamond buying is more like the failing real estate market here in Florida: Tons of inventory of multimillion dollar houses being dumped at unbelieveably low prices just to find a buyer

 

When the seller told you this, he was not giving you accurate information. Generally, although it might not be true with your man, one bad piece of information leads to more .

Edited by diamondsbylauren
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I don't think anyone intends to be hard Leslie...it's just that stories by consumers who "happen" to just have the "luck" to run into the cousin, aunt or co-worker's boyfriend's uncle's preacher's third cousin who is a "wholesaler" often follow a similar cadence and end the same (unfortunate) way.

 

To those of us who have watched these train wrecks in slow motion the announcement "I'm working with a diamond wholesaler..." is like fingernails on a chalkboard. :)

 

If everything works out for you that's great. You may be the 1 in 100 example that works out well, but something you might appreciate is the people who post on this board are all dedicated pros, and we are tired of suffering the mistrust created by the other 99 finks who abuse the term to create a false illusion for end-users like you.

 

By all means come back and post those specs; if they seem promising we'll tell you for sure. In the meantime let your instincts and logic guide you. Typically if something seems a little too good to be true...it is. Also, in the spirit of what others have offered, remember that when you buy a diamond there are usually benefits associated with it: Things like a week or so of guaranteed 100% return, and (from the dealers of high quality) a lifetime option to trade that stone in for most, or all credit towards a more expensive stone down the road. Such options - which create a bond with the consumer beyond a one-time "pay me and I'm gone" transaction - are promises which have teeth.

 

It sounds like you have a heads-up. Keep your wits about you, have fun and let us know what you find out.

Edited by JohnQuixote
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Okay, here is what this broker is bringing to show me. He sent me a fax of the EGL certificate today, but the quality of the fax was poor and difficult to read in some places, so some of the numbers may be off (I'll indicate where I am unclear).

 

Weight: 2.01 cts

Shape & Cut: Round Brilliant

Measurements: 8.10 - 8.07 x 5.00 mm

Proportions:

Total Depth: 62%

Table Width: 56%

Crown Height: 14%

Pavilion Depth: 42% (could be 40% - this is a fuzzy part of the fax)

Girdle Thickness - Thin to Medium, Faceted

Polish: Excellent

Symmetry: Excellent

Culet: None

Clarity Grade: SI2

Color Grade: D

Fluorescence: Very Slight

Comments: Excellent Ideal Cut - The quality of the cut of the diamond (unreadable) excellence in symmetry and proportion, thus obtaining (fuzzy...I think that's what it says "thus obtaining) this optimal (unreadable) of light and brilliance.

 

The broker notes to me that the most obvious inclusions are on off to the sides of the stone. He is bringing a loop with him so I can see for myself.

His asking price is $8600.

 

Thoughts?

Leslie

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No.

Leslie, there are a number of issues at play here.

In terms of gem reports the one you're depending on is notoriously unreliable.

Dealers know this.

The price asked confirms the fact that the diamond is not the quality stated.

 

I'm a very big fan of honest representation. If the stone was claimed to be G I1, I'd be more comfortable believe it or not.

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In terms of gem reports the one you're depending on is notoriously unreliable.

Dealers know this.

The price asked confirms the fact that the diamond is not the quality stated.

 

Okay, you guys have given me some grief here about unscrupulous dealers, poor information, and dishonest representation. But now it's my turn to give a little bit of grief back. This diamond, as well as almost all the dozens of others that I looked at by reputable established retail venues, is EGL certified. To the consumer who doesn't know any better (who doesn't have the benefit of the experts on this board), this is supposed to be "certification," “standardized grading,†and "honest representation" of diamonds. And yet the very agency that is supposed to honestly certify quality, is in itself not completely reliable, and has a reputation of being "loose" with its standards. So how is a consumer to trust anyone, when unscrupulous dealers take advantage of consumers, and yet the certifying agencies themselves, who are supposed to be independent experts to help a consumer avoid shady dealers, are also doing the same thing? What is a consumer supposed to think in this industry where no one seems to be telling the truth, or giving reliable information?

 

I am so appreciative of the time the experts on this board have taken to give me such great advice and education. I understand that EGL certification is not GIA certification. I understand that this dealer who is trying to sell me a stone has only been in business for six months, and he may not be around next year, much less in three years or ten years when I want to trade in my stone. I understand that his "services" may be lacking in some areas. I understand that the stones that I have been looking at are terribly flawed, and not of the best quality. And I understand that you don't like his analogy that he used about dumping inventory, and prices dropping. But you have to understand that I have a budget of less than $8,000, and while I said from the beginning, I was willing to make compromises, the only compromises any one else has suggested to me has been "settle for a smaller stone," or "increase your budget." The fact of the matter is that there is always something for every buyer’s budget. Will it be perfect? No. And I understand that. These are the compromises I am willing to make.

 

Someone here made a comment about EGL certification being inferior, and that most dealers know that. Again, it makes it appear as no one in this industry is honest, when even the certifying agencies themselves are deceptive. This dealer I am working with has explained all of this to me, in quite blunt, honest terms. He did say, about this recent diamond that he is showing me, that it was “probably†sent to EGL rather than GIA because it would “show better†with the EGL grading. He admitted that the EGL certification was a better tool for the dealer to sell an inferior stone, then it was a benefit to the buyer. He felt that the D color was accurate, but that it would probably have graded closer to an I1 by GIA standards. In terms of his analogy about dealers dumping inventory, it is not unheard of that after Christmas when the retail market slows down, that prices tend to adjust, even if only briefly. This dealer is new and presents as very eager, and hungry. He said that because he was new, he over-bought inventory for Christmas, and now he is saddled with it. He is clearly willing to negotiate some better prices because he needs the business, and he is trying very hard to earn my business. The other “reputable†dealers I’ve spoken with, the broker on 47th street in NY who was referred to me, the retail stores from Ultra, Bailey Banks & Biddle, and the five other national branded stores I went into, and the independent jewelry stores in my area with five generations in the diamond business, none have bothered to find something that would work for me, much less even return my calls. This gentleman has been efficient, friendly, and seems to echo the education that everyone here has been giving me. Every time I tell him what I want, he calls me back in a day or two with stones to show me. My boyfriend met him today, and said that out of all the people we spoke with, he liked this dealer the best.

 

Having said all of this, the gentleman showed me two stones today. He spent nearly two hours with me, and this is my third time meeting with him. The first stone is the one I listed above, a D/SI2, for $8600. The second stone was uncertified, 2.01 cts, he felt it was a J, did not give me a clarity grade, for $8200. He was really showing it to me for comparison purposes. Although they were both the same carat weight, the D stone appeared slightly smaller. He measured the across the top of stone D at 8.07 and the J stone measured 8.27. The J stone, under a loop, had tons of black speckles in it. He said he could see them with the naked eye as well, but I couldn’t really make out the black speckles through all the facets (unless you turned the stone upside down -- there they all were.) The D stone had one cloudy, white area on the side of the stone, that seemed it could be easily covered by a prong setting. He even put the stone in a ring mounting to show me how that would work, and I was satisfied at the way it was covered up. He said the girdle on the J stone was thin, and that sometimes creates a problem with mounting the stone (he explained why…I don’t completely remember the explanation). He put the two stones in a folded piece of white paper so I could compare the two colors, and the J stone had a more yellow cast to it, but still a very pretty stone. However, to my eye, the J stone looked bigger, and even though I could see the black spots, it looked a little more sparkly to me, and that kept catching my eye. Now the D stone was plenty sparkly and beautiful, but side by side, the J just seemed to sparkle a little bit more. The J stone is $8200, but he said he would take $8600 for the D stone. When I asked him how he could give me that price, and I shared with him the sentiments of this board’s advice, he said, “I need the business. I have bills to pay. You need a diamond, and I need to give you a great one at a great price for you to spend the money with me.†Someone here said I was doing business with a desperate seller, and I suppose that I am. But then again, I am a bit of a desperate buyer.

 

I kept looking at the J stone, at the way it sparkled. In the end they are both about the same price. He said that he felt that somewhere down the line, if I ever wanted to sell the stone, or trade it back in, I would have an easier time with the D stone. Better color, better clarity, inclusions on the side rather than the center, and at least some certification, albeit EGL, which carried more weight than having no paperwork at all. I asked him about having the stone independently appraised, as suggested by this board, and he agreed to it. I asked him about return policy and he said 100% return policy, but I forget within how long of a period of time.

 

Next week he is going to show me two more diamonds. One is a 2.27 that he admits is included, but will sell for $8500. I just want to see what the bigger diamond looks like. He said it was a “nice stone,†but he thought I’d be happier with the 2.01 D stone. The other option that he offered, is for me to sell him my stone from my first marriage (1.5cts, H, SI2, GIA certified - paid $14K 6 yrs ago.) He said he would give me $5K for that stone, combine that with the $7500 from our budget, and he would show me stones in the $11K to $13K range that would “knock my socks off.†I am considering that as well. He will also offer me $300 for my platinum wedding band with channel set diamonds (it is a very wide platinum band. More metal than diamonds.) A different independent dealer said they would give me $4500 for my diamond, and $150 for the wedding band. However, once again, this dealer I am working with said that my diamond was a “really beautiful stone,†and the quality of my 1.5 ct was better than the quality of what he would show me if I traded it in and looked at 2 cts in the $11K to $13K range. He said that I might want to think about hanging onto it, rather than sell it.

 

So where am I at? I am confused as all heck. In the end, I’ll probably get the D/SI2 (although it’s probably an I1) stone. It’s in my budget, has some certification for whatever that’s worth, seems to be a good value, is from a dealer I feel good about, and is a very pretty stone. I just can’t justify trading in my smaller diamond right now, and having a ring on my finger that was twice my original budget.

 

Okay, so I’m sorry if I sound a little jaded. I didn’t mean to offend anyone, or bore anyone with this long post. Fire away at me, as always, feel free to share your thoughts.

 

Leslie

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In every profession they are good and there are bad.

 

Both John and Neil are highly qualified professionals with a great level of integrity. They have given you very good advice. The advice been given in the best of faith and not try to make a sale

The diamond business is very competitive, which can lead to people saying things that are untrue to make a sale.

Still, I know of many, many honest merchants in my business.

 

There is no debate about the quality of the G.I.A. report versus the quality of report you're looking at.

GIA does not even call their product a "certificate"-they are very clear to indicate that the report is based on visual observations of people. And they do not guarantee the grade. However, over a long period of time honest dealers have learned that they can trust GIA grading.

There is also no debate at $8,600 will not buy a very high quality two carat diamond.

That is not to say you should not buy any diamond you want. People buy quality enhanced diamonds and people buy horribly imperfect diamonds.

Generally, people reading boards like these, are looking for better quality diamonds, honestly represented

 

It sounds like you're comfortable with the seller, and he's working very hard for your business best of luck I hope you enjoy the diamond

Edited by diamondsbylauren
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Leslie,

 

I'm sorry but I'm just a little concerned. Whatever you do, do not trade your previous diamond for a larger included stone. If you are willing to trade your previous diamond, try a another retailer,one who is not aware of your budget. I am not a jeweler, but I cannot imagine a jeweler not wanting to add a GIA cert. diamond to their collection that is a fairly good grade and color.I'm just saying, your diamond is worth more than $5,000. Ask the experts on this blog. Leslie, please leave this seller alone. As I read your blog, I'm able to see your how much you want this stone, but I really feel that this seller is misleading you. If I were your dear friend, I would insist that we find another seller. Even though the price is right, your not at a pawn shop you know, why does this seller feel that they can swindle you and suggest you to sell them additonal pieces in order for them to show you something "better". Your range may be tight for what you want but, this just sounds off to me. If your still online try Natalia's diamonds, I looked at one some 2+ carats around your range 2.00 I1 F EGL, they've got the cert posted, but I'm a princess cut type of lady so I'm not sure what good percents are-sorry-. I hope your in New York though. It's really difficult to hear the "professional advice" of the board, but these jewelers are telling you nothing but expert opinions. Still, search around until your head hurts, your previous diamond and the amount you are anticipating on spending, should allow you to find a better diamond. Please take it slow, diamonds take centuries to grow, what's the rush :rolleyes: . Be patient and I'm sure you will find what your looking for. ;)

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Leslie,

 

Did you ever check MichaelJay.com. I've looked on your behalf at some 2.00ct rounds and they are all in your range. He's got online inventory, and when you call the number on the website you can speak with the same owner directly everytime you call. He is honest and prompt, I've dealt with him a couple of times. Check out the diamonds on this site. He is located on 47th in the NY and is so patient and honest.I know you will be happy with the size and clarity color and cut if you browse through the inventory. Call his number to ask questions, he sends pics too, and read the journal of clients. I found him on a similar blog like this. I will never buy any of my diamonds from another retailer. MichaelJay.com.

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Several subtle things have changed here.

 

1) It’s not the economy after all, it’s this particular store that’s having trouble and has some dead inventory. I still don’t believe him because new jewelry stores, especially those who are ‘well connected’, don’t generally stock 2 caraters that they own but the fact that he’s eager to make a sale and willing to work at it is a good sign.

2) You’re not relying on EGL’s grading, you’re relying on your dealer’s. EGL is irrelevant here.

 

I count both of these as progress. A D/I1 for $8600 is not unreasonable and if this is the stone you want it’s well worth considering. I1 is a big range and includes some lovely stones as well as some dogs.

 

The ‘wholesale’ thing is a pet peeve of mine and it seems to be on the increase. I’ve seen ‘wholesalers’ who rent mall space and offer free ring sizing and giftwrapping! In my own home market of Denver, way over half of the jewelers describe themselves this way and in other markets I’ve seen it’s even worse. The more aggressive they are about this the worse I take it. The intent is not to give you any useful information but to distract you from looking at the deal at hand with how lucky you are to have made the connection with a particular source. If it’s low key I’ll let it slide for the same sorts of reason that I let slide that cleaning products are ‘new and improved’. In the stores where this is the whole substance of their sales pitch, I count it a deal killer. I’m with David, I don’t like it when I catch salespeople lying to me and it causes me to question everything else they say. I routinely ask salespeople questions that I know to be difficult and where I already know the answer for purposes of evaluating the dealer, not the deal, and my patience for BS artists is pretty low.

 

Who to trust is a key problem. Actually, it’s THE key problem and you’re approaching it in a reasonable way. There are lots of choices. Dealers, labs, appraisers, books, magazines, Internet advice forums and friends. There’s quite a bit of overlap in what you hear but there’s lots of disagreement as well. The advisors are competing with one another and their agendas are not necessarily in your best interest. You’re absolutely correct that all advisors are not equal. Some are very valuable and some are worth less than zero. Choosing a dealer who you feel you can trust and then putting him to the test is a good strategy. If they are found wanting, move on and if they demonstrate that they deserve your trust, give it to them while putting increasingly less weight on the thoughts of the naysayers. In the end, you have to choose.

 

In defense of the jewelry industry, this is hardly unique. Destructive or outright wrong advice coming from self-proclaimed experts comes in every industry from childcare to tattoos, auto mechanics to surgeons, investment advisors to plumbers. Many of the worst have the most polished presentations. Shopping your advisors is an absolutely critical step in shopping for pretty much anything. There are excellent jewelers out there, just like there are excellent plumbers and excellent tattoo artists who very much deserve your business but just because they call themselves experts doesn’t end the discussion, at least not for me.

 

$5k to trade in a 1.50/H/SI2/GIA is a bit on the low side for a tradein but not completely unreasonable. Obviously he plans to sell it to someone else and make a profit on the deal and there’s nothing wrong with this but you may be able to squeeze it for a little more.

 

Neil

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Neil, I find your reply to be most reassuring, especially since I was starting to feel rather negative and jaded about this whole process. I value that you are listening to my needs, rather just being critical of the process and the sales person.

 

It is difficult on an internet message board to communicate every last detail of a transaction. This dealer did not stock up on diamonds. He over bought watches for the Christmas holiday, and now the bills are coming in. I find that reasonable to believe that business is slow, and he is now having cash flow problems, and is willing to give me a great price on a diamond to get a customer and to pay some bills. You are correct, he does not happen to have an inventory of 2 carat stones laying around. His family is in the diamond business here, and that is where he has been obtaining stones for me to examine. But once again, I want to stress that everything that I have learned from the experts on this board, this gentleman, as new as he is in the business, has been right on target. I've never caught him being deceptive with his information (based on the great education I've received here), and he's never pressured me. So while everyone keeps telling me that there are red flags all over about this dealer, quite honestly, I just don't see it. I think his explanations are reasonable, and he has gone out of his way to be accommodating. He's admitted that he's new in the biz (rather than pretend he is experienced), and is taking the time to build a relationship with me as a customer. Whether he succeeds in this business certainly remains to be seen. But if he makes it, I would gladly go back to him in the future, I like him that much.

 

I guessed that the $5K offer for my own diamond was low, especially since it was purchased for $14K 6 years ago. But another dealer offered $4500, so he was in the ball park, but a little better, still another reason to like him. Of course he will sell it for a tidy profit. That's called business, and I expect that. But, it really is a beautiful diamond and I'm not ready to part with it. So I'm keeping it.

 

So much of the advice I have received her has been to drive me away from this dealer, who has taken me literally months to find. Now that I've found someone I really do feel comfortable with, it's diamond advice that I am seeking. Quality vs. value. Like when John explained to me that the previous 2 ct stone I was looking at would appear more like a 1.75 ct in a ring. That was really valuable to me. And Tamorga explained that even a flawed stone would have tremendous sparkle if it had a quality cut, that's where I decided to put my money, into the cut, rather than the lack of flaws. However, I still need to understand how to identify a quality cut so that I can be sure I am purchasing the maximum bling for my buck.

 

The website Tamorga was referred to had 2 ct diamonds in my price range, but they were either not certified or they were EGL certified, which I don't see as any different than what my local broker is showing me. I am not comfortable buying a diamond on the internet, without being able to see the diamonds, without knowing who the dealer is, or knowing the person who is referring me. I think most people would find that reasonable.

 

Please, please, go back and read my descriptions of the two stones this gentleman is showing me. Tell me what you think about these two. The dealer believes that in the long run, the EGL D/SI2 (which he says would probably be an I1 by GIA standards) is a better quality and value, even though to my eye, the J stone seems to sparkle slightly more. He feels that the slight fluorescence in the D stone may be making it appear a little cloudier than the J stone, and there is a slight difference in the faceting as well, with the J having "broader" facets, and the D having "thinner" facets. He said if the D stone were lower in color, the fluorescence would help the appearance, but in this case, because it is a D, it may possibly be affecting the sparkle when I compare the two. (He explained it in better terms than that, it's just that is the way I remember the explanation. Also, as he was explaining that to me, I did remember reading about fluorescense on this board, and that it was not always a bad thing, so what he explained seemed to make sense.) This dealer feels that the J stone has too many things that lowers it's value against the D/SI2 -- lack of any certification, thin girdle, tons of black carbon inclusions, J color, etc. But all I see is the sparkle. Am I placing too much emphasis on this? Neil, John, David, Tamorga....please advise about these two stones.

Thanks.

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