Ahh, gold. We knew the topic would come up eventually. Everyone wants it, but how do you get your hands on some of that bling next time you’re out hitting the garage sales?
Well, here are a couple tips I use to regularly find gold at garage and estate sales.
1. Have the Right Tools
- Gold Testing Kit
- 100g Scale
- Neodymium Magnets
- Jewelery Loupe (or this cheap brass mini-microscope) – I actually own the microscope and it’s a STEAL for $3.
- Business Cards – I’ve been called back a couple times because I gave someone my card and they ended up finding more gold!
Once you have all of those tools, you’re equipped with the basic essentials needed to buy gold successfully. Now all you need is some garage sales!
2. Ask and Ye Shall Receive
You may be thinking, why would anyone sell me gold when there are literally hundreds of We Buy Gold places around? Well, for starters, those places pay like crap. Secondly, it’s not necessarily the top priority of everyone to go running out to sell their gold. In fact, I would say that a heavy percentage of people that I’ve bought gold from are people that forget they even had it… until I asked. These are the people that ARE NOT going to have it sitting out trying to sell it. So, when I’m out hitting yard sales looking for gold, I always ask.
Now, before you go asking people for their gold, keep in mind that there is a little bit of psychology going on here. The word “gold” brings dollar signs to people’s mind right away. If you go asking people if they have any gold they want to sell, chances are, they’re going to want a lot more money than if you ask them, say, “Do you have any old or broken jewelry you might want to sell?”. So, be careful how you phrase your question. 😉
3. Buy Jewelry in Bulk
On more than one occasion I have been able to pick out gold and silver from a bulk buy that far exceeded the cost of the entire purchase. Whenever I see someone with a jewelry box out, or a bowl of jewelry, or even when I don’t, I ask what they want for the whole lot. One time I bought a jewelry box with about $150 in silver in it for $20! Any costume jewelry I buy when I get them in bulk packages gets sorted. The good costume stuff goes on eBay and the mediocre stuff gets set out at the garage sale. The broken stuff I piece out on Etsy. When it’s all said and done, I generally triple or quadruple my money on jewelry, even if there was no gold in it.
4. Know How To Tell If It’s Gold
Many times foreign pieces, hand made pieces, antique pieces, etc, don’t have stamps on them. Eventually you can train your eye and hands to tell if it’s real gold or not (albeit you have to handle the stuff a lot), but a quick way to tell if it’s gold or not is to run a strong magnet over it. If it IS magnetic, it’s NOT gold. **NOTE: If it’s not magnetic, that does NOT mean it’s gold.. it just means it’s more likely to be gold if the other signs say yes. Never buy something as gold until you’ve confirmed it with an acid testing kit. The magnet test is a quick way to see if it’s potentially gold if you’re buying a bunch for $1-$2 a piece.. If the person wants to try and sell you gold, as gold, make sure you bust out your acid testing kit and confirm each piece before you lock in a price.
That’s pretty much it! There is still plenty of gold out there for the taking you just have to make sure you’re the one hunting it out and asking for it!