Gemstone Appraiser

Does anyone know of a reasonably priced colored gemstone certified appraiser around S. Florida? Ive posted before because i would like to sell off stones but feel I’d be better off on the bigger, rarer, stones having certs for a buyer. Id like to sell them wholesale or even below. I just want to reduce my inventory because im retired.

Also, any ideas on costs for it. Thank you. Ken

I recently spoke to several gem appraisers, and as, like you approaching retirement. After collecting for almost 40 years you always find out new stuff. Appraisers are not labs, and each one I spoke to was very ethical and told me to get my (mostly rubies) to a GIA or other accredited lab. 1. Authenticity (hopefully natural and unheated/treated). And 2. Certificate of origin. 2 is harder but GIA will certify both for $85 ++ depending on carat weight. Also I found that there is no way I’m going to (afford) to insure a package or hire an armored car service. NYC is a reasonable drive for me so I will go with a few items next month maybe. I did have a sapphire appraised in 2004 in Hilton Head by a GIA graduate. He did not at the time tell me what I’ve just told you. Good Luck! note: GIA Labs do not appraise value. Once you know what you have you can figure a ball park with the IGS listings. Appraisals are also specific to insurance, wholesale, retail etc. You must tell the appraiser what the intent is of the appraisal as they are all different.

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Thank you so much. I used to live right outside NYC so could drive in and go from shop to shop or take the train in but now it’s impossible. And also as you mentiined insurance on pricey stones would be beyond belief if you could even get it.

Im surprised i thought the GIA gave replacement or insurance values. I know ive seen them on other reports.

Im actually thinking about moving back because medical here is horrible but looking at the prices of condos I’m in sticker shock.

Thank again. Ken

A GIA graduate will appraise, but they are generally not a certified lab.

Hi Stuart,

I’m assuming you’re the GIA grad? I’m not sure what you mean by not a lab but do you provide an appraisal certificate as GIA certified that can be given to a buyer with the stone?

Also, where are you located?

Thanks so much.



Hi Stuart,

My apologies on my first email I sent today. For some reason I was thinking you were Ron then realized you wrote the original longer post so ignore my email today since I had already agreed originally with your longer post and that NYC was not tii far for you.

The one thing i hope that helps with my stones is that i definately know the country every one came from and in some cases the actual mine! Jewelry stores usually have no clue where a stonr comes from. I also think IMO most people don’t realize that colored gemstones should really be purchased like an expensive diamond. First, see the stone by itself, that you like, examine it, THEN choose a setting.

Like I have a large untreated pink tourmaline from the Cruziero mine and I’m not even sure if they’re mining it any more. I’ve had this stone for quite some time. I know at one point it was the brothers mining but not sure right now. Thanks again.

Thanks Ken. I’ve used GIA graduate gemological services like I said in my first post about getting a some gemstones appraised in Hilton Head quite a few years ago. I’m not a gemologist but love all facets of the gem world. I’m currently in Boston so NYC as discussed will be where I go for the lab reports. I don’t have all the tools for proper classification but have started with a microscope and refractometer to do self study with along with the great information on IGS.

Thanks Stuart and my apologies again for the last email confusion.

NYC would be a bit of a hike for you. When i lived up there all my life except for thr last 6 years I was in N Jersey about 15 miles from the GWB so NYC was a breeze for me.

Believe it or not I’m actually thinking about moving back up north because the doctors are so much better. Selling most of my stones would be perfect time now since the homes are high and every little bit helps.

The only problem is housing costs are out of this world now especially in the tri state area.

I truly appreciate your response!

Thanks again and Kind Regards,


Same here Stuart. Love gemstones too. I don’t have elaborate equipment but all my stones I got many years ago from a friend who knew all these miners and cutters all over so I knew my stones were quality. Most of the stones ive seen inder like 800 times camera views.

About 5 years ago i worked out a deal with a appraiser that also does stuff for forensics labs etc. I gave him like 5 stones which I only asked for a pic and basic evaluation paragraph of each on 2 pages with a WHOLESALE appraisal price. So i have thus information on them he alsi was nice and let me use his FEDEX acct for insurance. BUT for tgese 5 stines with a very basic teport / evaluation i paid $600. then! For example I sent him a 7 ct oval Zambian emerald that he gave a “wholesale” cost of $7,000. and I cant get $3,500 which is WAY below the wholesale estimate.

I thought about this. You have to find an end user not a wholesaler. If you worked out a deal with a jeweler that had clients who would want to make a really nice piece using one of your stones and you have a current appraisal at 7K for wholesale the jeweler should estimate the work for the client including paying you. The other side of that is finding a person that wants the stone for personal jewelry or collection and is willing to pay the wholesale price. I don’t currently know the difference between wholesale and market value but after speaking to a woman who is one of the top three appraisers in the country she said when you get an appraisal you can ask for five different types and they are all different from replacement value to insurance value to wholesale value to consumer/market value, private sale. She told me each estimate would be different and I have to choose which one I want because no matter what you pay for each type of estimate you need. This was a new piece of information for me.

Yes, that’s what i was trying to do with small jeweler Mom and Pop … have them buy for a customer below wholesale or just for their stock to offer. The vast majority of my stones are big.
Ie. over 1 ct Alexandrites, 5 to 7 ct beautiful tanzys, etc. But if youre not in NYC where you can hit a lot of shops next to each other it was hard. Plus a lot of private jewelry small stores would lie and say oh no they get theirs from Asia Etc. No one from Asia ships one stone to a jeweler. They ship lots to middle men here.I’ve always thought the last few years my best approach is end user sales like on ebay or instagram but the problem is the payment to me and shipping insurance. Then i thought not everyone is honest andsomething could go wrong.

As far as valuations I’ve only been aware of the certs having a value that is usually used as replacement value or insurance reasons and 99% of the time they over inflate them beyond belief.

I’m not sure if you notice but the retail jewelers always have like 75% off sales because their retail is so overpriced theyre still making good money when on sale.

I truly believe on line is my best route but justcan’t figure out the payment problems, insurance, dishonest people problems.

Even on the IGS site I’ve seen stone ads that when you click on a pic it links you to someone selling on Instagram. I obviously stand by all my stones and that even a jeweler wouldnt give them my low price and I would fully refund as long as they don’t damage them if they arent what i state.

It’s just becoming a big nut to crack and i think I’ll be sitting with them forever. : (

Can’t tell you what a great guy you are for thinking about it all and conversing. Nice to meet people on sites with similar interests.

Thanks again Stuart and Kind Regards,