How to Sell Valuables: Your Complete Guide

08 Mar 2011

Whenever you sell valuables, you want to be sure it’s simple, secure and, of course, that you get value for your items. Yet, with so many options out there, how can you know which one is right for you?

From traditional methods to selling valuables online, we’ve explored the more popular ways of making cash from your valuable items and how they stack up. So, if you’re on the lookout for the best way to sell valuables, this is the guide for you.


Before you sell valuables…

Whether you’re selling valuables online or off, there are several things to consider. From jewellery and watches to antiques, art or anything else, before you sell valuables of any kind, take a look at this little list of factors to get you on the right track.


  • Fees: When you sell valuables, many places, dealers and websites will charge you fees and/or interest along the way. This can add up and take a big bite out of your profits. If you want to minimise these fees – or even avoid them altogether – do your research such as reading terms and conditions and any contracts. Also, don’t be afraid to ask about these things.


  • Ease of sale: When choosing how to sell valuables, have a think about how much effort or even hassle every option entails. Will you need to travel? Are there lots of forms to complete? Remember, there are plenty of ways to sell valuables that are totally stress-free.


  • Security: Ensure that your chosen method of selling your valuables is secure by knowing as much as you can about it. Check out whether a business is a member of any applicable trade bodies – an example is the British Antique Dealers’ Association – as well as whether their website has trust marks such as TRUSTe. Also, you want to know whether they use secure payment options.


  • Sale guaranteed? If it’s important to you to sell valuables within a given times, ensure that you give this some thought when choosing your selling method because some options do not guarantee a sale.


  • The Markets: Timing is one of the less thought-of considerations when deciding whether and how to sell valuables, especially as the market value of different things – such as gold – can affect the value of your item. What if you sell one day and the value of your item shoots up the next? So, before you sell valuables keep an eye on the relevant markets. Also, bear in mind that some selling options can prevent this disappointment by letting you buy back your item, even if this is the case.


  • Sentimental value: As we’ve mentioned, some ways of selling valuables online or off offer you a cooling off period after you sell, letting you buy back your valuables if you change your mind. This is also useful if you find that you miss you item and want it back – after all, sometimes we don’t know how much we like our things until they’re gone.


Of course, this list isn’t exhaustive, just a good start.


How to Sell Valuables – Your Options

The next step is to weigh up the different ways to sell valuables and find the one that works for you. Here’s a taste of some of the more popular methods:


  • Auction:
    • If you have a selection of valuables to sell, you might consider an auction, where people will bid on them and the highest bid wins.
    • This fairly traditional way to sell valuables can be unpredictable as the price you get for your items can depend on the turnout on the day. A full crowd of interested buyers can result in a higher price while an empty auction house can mean few or no bids.
    • It’s worth noting that auctions involve a range of fees and there is no guarantee of a sale.
    • Remember, once the gavel strikes, your items have been sold for good.


  • Online:
    • Selling valuables online is becoming more and more popular, especially as it can mean far less hassle than traditional methods. For example, lets you sell valuables for cash at the click of a mouse.
    • It’s easy to discover how much you can get for your valuables. Just upload a photo of your items or describe them to us and we’ll give you a free, no-obligation quote.
    • One of the best things about using is that it is totally free. There are no fees or charges at any point and we manage the whole transaction, from collecting your valuables to paying your money into your account. You can even track it all online.
    • We use only reputable payment options and our site is secure, so you can be confident when you sell valuables with us.
    • Once you sell valuables with, you get 62 days in which you can buy them back for exactly the same price. This give you time to decide if you’re happy with the sale and to change your mind if you’re not.


  • Car boot sale:
    • If you’re looking for a more traditional way to sell valuables, the car boot sale might be the option for you.
    • On the plus side, you can get quick cash for your valuables and the amount you get is up to you – and your haggling abilities!
    • On the other hand, a car boot sale can require some travel, including transporting all your items there and back, depending how many you’ve sold. Indeed, there’s no certainty of sale.
    • If you choose to go down the car boot sale route, you can join an organised sale – often at a fee or percentage of your earnings – or to set up your own. If you do the latter, make sure you obtain any necessary licences.


  • Antique dealers:
    • Antique dealers can help you sell your valuables or even buy them from you – as long as they are actually antiques.
    • Generally, the price you get when you sell valuables with an antique dealer is said to be higher than other places, but the same is often said of the fees. Also, there is no guarantee of a sale.
    • Antique dealers are located on various high streets around the country. They also have trade associations.


  • High street pawnbrokers:
    • In some countries, rather than directly selling valuables, you might take them to a pawnbroker. Pawnbrokers can offer you a loan secured on your valuables. This will be for a set period (usually 6-12 months).
    • After the loan period has ended, you can choose to buy back your item or keep the cash.
    • However, if you want your item back, you’ll need to pay back the amount borrowed plus interest for every month or part of a month you’ve had the loan. This can get costly.


Things to Remember

When you want to sell valuables, it’s very useful to know as much as you can about them. This information makes it easier to sell and may get you better value for your items. Here are a few phrases to get you started:


  • Diamonds:
    • Carat/karat (not to be confused with gold carats): Measures the weight of the diamond.
    • Cut: The shape of a diamond or the way in which it is cut helps determine its level of brilliance.
    • Clarity: Purity of the diamond and whether it has any visible defects.
    • Colour: Diamonds come in a variety of colours.


  • Gold
    • Carat or karat (not to be confused with diamond carats): The purity of the gold, measured in ranges from 1 carat to 24.


  • Hallmark:
    • The value of your jewellery can be higher depending on its maker. To find out who this is, check if it has a hallmark.


  • Silver
    • Purity: Measured in the percentage of the item which is actually composed of silver. Usually stamped with the purity mark: 925 meaning it is 92.5% silver, 999 meaning it is 99.9% silver etc.


How to sell valuables – getting started

Wondering how to take your first step towards selling your valuables? A good place to start is to find out how much you get can get for your items. If you’d like a free quote with no obligation to sell, upload a photo of your item to or describe it to us.

You can even get quotes on other items, so if you’re looking to sell gold, sell diamonds, sell art, sell watches or sell antiques you can get a free quote for any valuable item.