When people think about investments, most immediately think about the typical investments many people make in life: residential property to settle down on their own or to start a family; commercial property to profit; insurance in case of unexpected accidents; or automobiles for easier travel.
Yet, very little people think of jewelry when they think of investments.
Plenty of costume jewelry can cost a few dollars and will tarnish within a few months, so we’re talking about fine jewelry as an investment. One could say that jewelry is an investment, but only in an emotional sense. What makes it priceless is not the gemstones or the metal used to create it; rather, it is the sentiment that drove you to buy jewelry in the first place.
While that may be true, that doesn’t change the fact that fine jewelry has a high monetary value when purchased – and for those who value their money’s worth, it’s still considered an investment.
But is it a good investment?
Antique jewelry can fetch a high price, especially in mint condition. Auction houses like Christie’s and Sotheby’s sell fine and antique jewelry that can fetch millions of dollars, depending on the buyers. In fact, Sotheby’s has auctioned off four of the five most expensive jewelries, the most expensive fetching $71.2 million for just one diamond.
These items fetch high prices not only because of the rarity of its stones, but also because of its historic significance. Antique fine jewelry belonged to noteworthy members of history (because, at that time, only wealthy bluebloods, royalty, and popular members of society could afford to buy jewelry), so there is that sentiment that you are owning a part of history.
Antique and fine jewelry are often the most expensive, valued at multi-million dollars. If kept maintained and in good condition, these pieces increase in value as they get older.
Jewelry from Top Designers
Jewelry made by top designers still retain their value and, like fine jewelry, can increase in value over time if properly maintained. Top designers in the industry have a signature style that are distinctive among others. Because of their quality and renowned style, they often use high-quality diamonds and luxurious metals like 925 silver (also known as sterling silver).
Jewelry from renowned jewelers can also reach values as high as those of antique jewelry. Designers may have also produced jewelry for high-profile individuals or have created limited edition designs that only a handful of public consumers can get their hands on. As such, the piece will appreciate with each passing year because it is high-profile, unique and an exceptional quality.
For regular fine jewelry made in local jewelers or from manufacturers that didn’t come from high-profile designers, the value of your jewelry depends on the demand for the materials used to make your jewelry.
Should you ever need to resell a gold necklace, for example, it can fetch a high price as gold is still a valuable commodity around the world. As of writing, gold can fetch you USD 40 per gram. Diamonds are much harder to sell as only rare diamonds or large diamonds with high-grade quality can fetch the highest return value. Assuming you have a diamond that can be classified as flawless, that can get you $65,000 per gram – expect much less than this if you have something of lower quality.
Also, what of other types of jewelry? Earlier, I mentioned that costume jewelry cannot make as much as fine jewelry since costume jewelry today is often made with low-cost materials that can tarnish easily. But what of costume jewelry made in the 1920’s from renowned costume jewelry designers like Miriam Haskell? Since they are considered vintage, they’re not exactly antique nor do the materials have any value on their own. But her designs were so popular that a piece from her collection in good condition can get you up to $500 under the right auction. You’ll have to prove that the necklace is an authentic Miriam Haskell, though.
Contrary to what most people believe, jewelry can be a good investment if you know what you’re buying and you can keep your jewelry in good condition for years to come. However, regardless of the monetary value it holds, a lot of the jewelry people buy have intrinsic worth that simply can’t be measured by money alone. We still have to consider things like history, its previous owners, and the sentiment of owning jewelry of such history.
While it may not be an investment in the same sense as property or automobiles, think of it as an investment for your loved ones or for future generations of your family. It may hold sentimental value for generations to come, but when the time comes and your family comes into financial trouble, having a valuable piece of jewelry kept in good condition can help them earn a nice profit to help them financially.