1. Tell me more about your diamond quality, namely the 4C’s – cut, carat, clarity and color
Most jewelers should be willing and able to educate you on the 4C’s. Gemological Institute of America, also known as GIA, provides a simple chart that can help you understand diamond characteristics. Prices of diamonds increase as you move up the GIA scale.
2. Do you carry certified diamonds?
Certified diamond protect you against fraud and offer a peace of mind. When purchasing diamonds over 0.5 carat, insist on GIA certified diamonds. All certified diamonds come with a diamond certificate. There are other laboratories worldwide that provide certified diamonds but GIA has one of the highest diamond grading standards in the industry.
3. Will my diamond be natural (from the earth) or synthetic (lab-made)?
There are only a finite number of natural diamonds on earth. To make diamonds more affordable and address the ethical concerns related to “blood diamonds”, your jeweler may be carrying synthetic, also known as lab-made diamonds. What you need to know is that synthetic diamonds generally cost half as much as natural diamonds.
4. I have a certain budget in mind for my diamond ring ring. Can I get something within my budget without compromising on the “look and feel”?
Your jeweler must be able to make recommendations that fit your budget needs. There is no need to feel uncomfortable when asking this question or go beyond your allocated budget for your diamond jewelry. For example, a colorless diamond such as D,E or F colors can cost twice as must as G or H colored diamonds. To the naked eye, there is virtually no difference. So if you are looking for best value, opt for G or H colored diamonds.
5. What is your return policy?
Jewelers don’t want you to wear the diamond jewelry for a special occasion and then simply return it. However a good jeweler understands that sometimes people want to try out the jewelry and get a feel for it before committing to the purchase. Knowing the return policy in advance of your purchase is important because you don’t want to purchase something that you are not going to enjoy for the rest of your life. Also in many states such as California, return policies are required per state law.
6. Can you perform jewelry repairs?
It is possible that your ring may need to be re-sized or a gold chain hook needs replacement. Ask your jeweler if they perform repairs should you need to make changes. Especially if you have a tight timeline, you want the jeweler to be able to perform the repairs fairly quickly. Generally speaking, simple repairs can take 1-3 weeks depending on the time of the year (holiday season tends to be more busy) and availability of the jewelry technician.
7. Will the final invoice include details of the quality of diamonds and metal used?
The answer to this question will help you understand whether your jeweler is being transparent and honest. In the final invoice, is the jeweler willing and able to provide the diamond carat weight, color, clarity and cut? Does the invoice include the purity of the metal used? For diamonds greater than 0.5 carat, it is fair for you to get this information in writing. For smaller size diamonds, jewelers may or may not be able to provide such detailed information. An ethical jeweler, will not be afraid to provide this information in the final invoice.
8. Do you offer cash or check discount?
Most jewelers realize that fine jewelry can be expensive and the sales tax, when applicable, adds up quickly. To help offset some of the sales tax, some jewelers may offer 1% – 2% cash/check discount. If you pay by credit card, the jeweler has to pay fees to the credit card company. For this reason, jewelers may be willing to offer cash/check discounts and pass the savings to you.
9. How you should take care of your jewels?
Fine jewelryis delicate and you want to take care when trying to wear and store it. For instance, you don’t want the diamonds to rub against each other when you store the jewelry or wear your jewelry in a swimming pool. Also with daily use, you will need to clean any dirt about once a year. Some jewelers offer complimentary cleaning services or can show you how to keep your diamonds sparkling.
10. Do you have a social mission?
Social initiatives such as Diamonds Do Good™ by the Diamond Empowerment Fund require the support of consumers and retailers to enrich and enhance the lives of those you work bring fine jewelry to life. Diamonds are mined from the earth with great effort, the rough diamonds are then cut and polished and painstakingly set into fine jewelry. So next time you are ready to purchase diamond jewelry, ask your jeweler if they support any social cause. It will make you feel good knowing that some of the profits from your purchase will improve the lives of those in need.
Hope this is helpful to you and help you get the most of your purchase.