Welcome to our 2nd blog post, we hope our first attempt was a pleasant experience for those of you that read it and we inspire to improve during the process.
Today we want to explain in further detail about one of the most important factors to consider in diamond buying, Pre-certified Diamonds.
What is a pre-certified diamond? Why is it so crucial for your diamond to be pre-certified? Is there a difference between certain certificates? These are some of the questions and concerns that we would like to shed some light on.
On our first post, one of the do’s was to always compare apples to apples and to know the specs of the diamond you are looking at. That being said, how do you know for certain that you are comparing apples to apples? You don’t. Should you trust the jeweler that they are truthful and honest with their grading or should you depend on your own expertise? NEITHER. The solution to these concerns is to make sure every diamond you look at is INDEPENDENTLY certified.
diamond-grading-diamonds-for-lessWhat is a certificate? Every diamond, after it’s cut and polished, is sent to an INDEPENDENT lab to be weighed (carat) and graded (clarity, color and cut) loose. Using the latest equipment and technology (scales, microscopes, diamond scanners and color grading computers) the diamond is inspected by several gemologists before making the final decision on the grading. This process is the most accurate way of knowing what a diamond is.
We keep writing “INDEPENDENT” in capitals because we can’t put enough emphasis on its importance. You obviously don’t want your stone to be certified by the seller nor by a company affiliated to them. So how can you know that the cert you are presented is issued by a trusted and reputable lab? Do your homework, find out which are the companies you can trust and depend on. You will find an abundance of information on the internet, blogs (such as this one), forums etc.
Worldwide there are many labs, international and local, but the leading most reputable and respected are the Gemological Institute of America (GIA), American Gemological Society (AGS) and Diamond High Council (HRD). By choosing any of these companies you are guaranteed that the quality of your diamond is as stated on the certificate. However, that does not mean that purchasing a stone certified by a reputable local lab will not be as good, as long as your local gemologist is using accurately the international standards of diamond grading. As said before with research you can find out who can be trusted locally. But if for any reason you have any doubts about the grading of the diamond you are about to purchase, it is a great idea to get a second opinion by another lab prior to making a decision. Keep in mind that you should only use companies that do not sell or buy diamonds, otherwise they will not be unbiased therefore confuse you even more.
diamond-appraisal-diamonds-for-lessIs there a difference between a certificate and an appraisal or certificate of evaluation (as it’s sometimes deceivingly called)? You bet there is, it’s as different as night and day. An appraisal is just an opinion as it is stated in the fine print on the back of the paper it’s printed on. When appraisals are conducted the diamond of your choice will be inspected after it has been set in a piece of jewellery and once the stone is set it cannot be weighed on a scale therefore the carat weight will be estimated. The grading of clarity, color and cut will also be estimated since the gemologist can’t look at the stone thoroughly, appraisals are just estimates. Would you base your decision on the 3rd most expensive and important purchase in your lifetime (House, Car, Diamond Ring) on an estimate? We wouldn’t!!!
Beware of appraisals. They should only be used for insurance purposes, not as a comparative tool. Make sure you are presented an INDEPENDENT certificate prior to purchasing a diamond. How can you tell the difference between a cert and an appraisal? Certificates never state a dollar value of the stone.
We hope this post was informative and useful to you in your quest to buy the perfect diamond. Feel free to contact us with any thoughts or questions through email us here on Facebook and Twitter or, better yet, come on in for a chat with one of us. We’d be happy to help you make the right decision.