What: Worthy is a marketplace to sell their engagement and wedding rings, gems, jewelry and watches

Expected pay: NA

Husl$core: $$$$

Commissions & Fees: Fees are set on a sliding scale; 18% for items worth $5,000 or less; just 10% for items that sell for more than $30,000. (The full commission schedule here. Look under the FAQ titled “what are your fees.”)

Where: Nationwide

Requirements: Jewelry to sell

Review:

Worthy markets itself is a great place for the divorced and jilted to sell expensive engagement and wedding ring via auction. However, because many of the site’s buyers appear to be professional buyers, Worthy may do better at selling the stone in your ring, rather than the ring itself.

Indeed, one of the consistent complaints that sellers have is that the site will ask whether they can take the stone out of your jewelry to have it graded. In some cases, removing the stone destroyed the setting. And the site did not traditionally replace the stone in the setting, even when the setting was left unscathed.

Worthy says it has changed its policy and now sells the entire ring, rather than just the center stone. It can grade the stone without removing it from the setting, if that’s what you prefer. If the ring doesn’t sell, and you have agreed to have the stone removed, the site says it will return the stone to the setting before returning it to you.

Love/hate relationships

Sellers generally either love or hate this site.

Haters have one of two complaints: The site removed the stone and didn’t put it back; or the original estimated value was far higher than the value estimated once the jewelry was sent in for grading. In some cases, the site has responded to the value complaints by politely explaining that sellers don’t always describe their items accurately. (That’s understandable, since sellers are not jewelers).

For instance, a seller might describe a ring as having a 1.5 carat diamond. However, when Worthy reviewed the stone,  the main diamond was smaller but the total carat weight of all the diamonds in the ring added to 1.5 carats. That ring is worth considerably less than the ring that was described.

Worthy pays for shipping and insurance on your piece and will return it if you don’t like the price they expect (or get) at auction. But you must set a minimum price if you don’t want to simply take what’s offered. The site also appears to be responsive to consumer complaints, resolving almost all of those posted with the BBB.

Recommendations:

Check with a few local jewelers before sending an item to Worthy. Many provide a nearly identical service at roughly the same cost. Amazon also is worth considering to sell expensive jewelry.

What their users say: (From the Better Business Bureau)

Unhappy customers

I was also asked to sign an agreement saying that I absolved them of all damages due to them taking the jewelry apart. They assured me they would take great care. First, the valuations came out much lower than what was given by phone. I demurred and they sent the jewelry back. But one diamond now has a large chip out of the top. And a high end necklace of tanzanite and diamonds is 4-inches shorter than it was when I sent it in. Be very wary and take pictures before you send your jewelry in. 

I recently sent a piece of jewelry to them with the intention of selling it. They provided an initial estimate of the value at $9,862 which agreed with my appraisal and grading paperwork. They requested permission to unmount the stone in order to obtain a GIA grading certificate which I granted. After several days I received an email “Upon our arrival inspection, our gemologists found that this stone has a cavity (a tiny hole) on the surface.” A couple days later they came back with a value of the ring at $1,300. I had to demand the return of the ring several times over the next few days before they actually acknowledged that it would be returned.

The GIA certificate Worthy obtained and my original GIA certificate from 20 years ago were consistent. Then, when it was time to put the set up for bid today, Worthy’s sales associate recommended a sale price that was significantly less than their original estimate two months ago. 

Happy customers

Sending them my ring was a true leap of faith. They exceeded my expectations! I had been offered a certain amount by a local jeweler. When my auction was over, the final price was slightly less than that. I asked Worthy to please send the ring back. The next day, they called me to say they had gone back to the winning bidder and asked them to match the local jeweler’s price, which the bidder did. I really wish I had know about them in the beginning and didn’t have to feel that sending them my ring was a ‘leap of faith’. Everyone at Worthy was helpful and, even more importantly, kind.

This company took care of everything…with permission from me, they unmounted it, professionally cleaned it, professionally photographed it, and submitted it to auction. They grade the diamond before the auction also. I got more money than what I anticipated.

Wow! This was the best auction experience I’ve ever had. I put my rings in a box, put the ***** label on and dropped it in a box. They kept me up to date on what was going on and asked me questions along the way to make sure that I understood what was going on. If ever I find myself in need of selling anymore jewelry, I will use Worthy.

From Yelp:

Happy customer

“Saw Worthy’s ad and was skeptical but did my homework (Dec ’17 NYT article upped my confidence, as did an offer from another company mentioned in the same article). The GSA appraisal obtained by Worthy matched exactly the GSA appraisal from when the stone was purchased in 1990. I also reached out to another online firm so had their high end bid as a data point. My Worthy auction grossed almost what the stone was purchased for and my post-commission net was more than $1,000 over what the other firm had offered. Was I nervous? Yes. Am I glad I went with Worthy? Absolutely!”

Unhappy customers

Ultimately, I got the cash in my account. But in the end, I ended up getting (minus their commission) THE EXACT SAME AMOUNT THE JEWELER OFFERED TO ME six years ago. So in the end, was it worth it? Probably not. 

My engagement ring was purchased for $10,000.00 and appraised for almost $16,000. After they reviewed it, they informed me that it was only worth $1,000.00 and would most likely get maybe $500 from it. I asked them to send my ring back to me. After I received it, I had it re-appraised for $15,750… sold it for $12,500.

*Updated 11/3/2020

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