Trading Standards message

As the price of gold reaches an all time high, Trading Standards is warning consumers interested in selling their jewellery, to shop around amidst mounting reports of scams across the country. Selling gold jewellery to make ends meet in this recession is becoming increasingly popular but sellers are urged to beware of conmen keen to cash in on the trend. There is a wide disparity in how much shops or dealers will pay for gold and unfortunately, there isn’t much Trading Standards officers can do if people are getting a bad deal, provided the trader is not actually misleading the seller about the gold’s worth.

Trading Standards can only urge people to shop around to make sure they are getting a fair price for their gold.

Top advice from Trading Standards:

* Never deal with people who visit your home asking if you have any jewellery to sell as they may be rogue traders or even would-be burglars.

* Don’t respond to adverts offering to buy your gold if the trader has no fixed premises.

* Remember that if someone tells you that they will give you ‘x’ amount for your piece of jewellery, that is not the same as saying that this given piece is worth that amount.

* Get several quotes to make sure you are getting a fair offer for your jewellery.

* Make sure your jewellery is weighed with accurate scales, verified and stamped by an authorised person, before you are given a price for it.

* If your jewellery contains any precious stones be sure that their value is taken into account. If in doubt get such items valued by a reputable jeweller first.

* Any precious metals dealer is required to display a hallmarking notice in the location where he deals with customers – it is an offence not to do so.

* Look for the carat marking on your jewellery’s hallmarking stamp to check the gold’s purity – it is likely to be either 9 or 18 carat.