How To Sell Gold: A 5-Step Guide
So you’ve got some Gold and you’re looking to sell. But ‘How To Sell Gold’ isn’t required learning in most classrooms. How do you get the best price? What are the dangers to avoid and how can you make it a hassle-free process?
Whether you’ve inherited your Gold or it was purchased for investment purposes, you’re ready to cash in but you’re definitely not looking to get hustled.
In this post, you’ll discover some key points about how and when to sell your Gold as well as what to look for in a trusted buyer. You’ll also learn about some of the most common Gold products and how to calculate the price you can reasonably expect to get (and why).
Let’s get right to it.
#1 - Decide on the Right Time to Sell
Deciding on the right time to sell your Gold can be as much a personal decision as it is a financial one.
You might be like many APMEX.com customers who invest in Precious Metals and are looking for the right time to sell in order to get a return on your investment. In that case, bookmark our spot price pages to keep up to date on the daily movements of the Gold rate.
But if this is your first time at APMEX.com, chances are you may have inherited or come across your Gold in some other way. In that case, ask yourself whether you’re ready to part with your Precious Metals and whether it’s the right time to let go of something that could be sentimental in the future.
Either way, the number 1 reason people sell their Gold is that they need to liquidate their investment. It could be to close on a house, to pay for your kid’s college tuition, or you might just want to splurge on a new car or boat.
Whatever your reasons, the right time is whenever you say it is.
The most common reasons people sell Gold:
- Redistribute investments
- College tuition
- Big purchase, such as a car or a house
- Need cash for some immediate need, like bills
- Trade into other metals, whether it is bullion or numismatic/semi-numismatic items
#2 - Know Your Gold
Side-of-the-road buyers have existed for a long, long time. And they are pretty famous for being aggressive and sometimes even downright deceptive when negotiating - even more so when they sense the seller has limited knowledge in the industry.
It’s a dilemma. You don’t want to get tricked into selling your yellow metal at a lowball rate, but you also want to sell quickly and through a painless process.
Here are four points you need to be aware of to make sure you’re getting a fair price.
Bullion vs. Collectible
The first thing to ask yourself is whether you’re holding bullion or a collectible product.
Bullion is an investment type of Gold that carries no subjective value over and above the current rate as determined by the market. Dealers try to buy it for a little below spot price and sell it for a little above the spot price (called the premium).
Collectible products, however, often carry a much higher premium than investment bullion. This might be because of a number of factors including (but not limited to) the following:
- Low mintage
- Rare imperfections
- Historical value
- Many other reasons
Sovereign vs. Private Mint
The second thing you should look for is whether you have government-backed currency or private-mint bullion. Value and buyback prices could be different depending on what you’re holding.
Typically, government-backed bullion (currency) will have a higher value and will retain that value longer. You can tell if your Gold is from a government (sovereign) mint if you can find a dollar or currency value printed somewhere on the coin.
The Gold American Eagle, for example, is backed by the United States and will always carry a fiat value of $50, which is listed on the coin.
Products from private bullion mints can still be very valuable, but they don’t carry any dollar value outside of the current spot price (which changes by the second according to market forces).
Bars vs. Coins
Another characteristic to identify is whether you have bars or coins. Normally the retail purchase price point for coins and rounds is higher than bars. Well, per ounce, that is.
Since the value of Gold is measured by weight (troy ounces in the U.S.), the price per ounce might be higher for a Gold coin, but the total value held in a bar may be much higher since bars tend to be purchased in larger weights.
Bid Price vs. Ask Price
The value of Gold per ounce, gram, kilogram, pound, etc. is determined by a myriad of factors. Just like the stock market, the price is determined by many things such as supply and demand, political and economic factors, and even the value of other commodities.
The spot price of Gold is the rate at which Gold is valued at any given point in time. However, there is also a Bid Price and an Ask Price.
The Bid Price is generally a little lower than spot and the Ask is a little higher than spot. The Ask Price represents a price at which a dealer will offer to sell you Precious Metals. The Bid Price represents a price at which they will offer to buy Gold products from you.
#3 - Learn About The Most Popular Types Of Gold To Sell
There are many Gold bullion products that can be sold for cash. But if you’re a novice or intermediate seller, we’ve compiled a list here that describes and demonstrates some of the most popular bullion items sold back to dealers.
Experienced bullion owners may know the breadth and depth of bullion but may not know what is popular in the market to sell. Regardless of which camp you fall into, take a look at this (in)exhaustive list:
Popular Gold Bullion to Sell
Gold Eagles – Gold Eagles were first minted in 1986. The eagle design on the obverse (head’s side) is one that was first used in 1907 for the Gold Double Eagle design. The modern Gold Eagle was immediately a popular bullion coin and continues to be popular among investors. Gold American Eagles come in various sizes, from 1/10 troy ounce up to the popular 1 oz size.
Gold Buffalos – Much like American Eagles, “Gold Buffs” are popular among investors. They come in the 1 oz size, which is most common for Gold bullion coins. However, in 2008, they were produced in multiple sizes, including 1/10 troy ounce. Collectors will recognize the design as the same one used for the infamous Buffalo Nickel from 1913. Gold Buffalo coins have been minted every year since 2006.
Gold Bars – Gold bars tend to have more variety because there are many sizes and manufacturers. Bars, while not having the same notoriety as a coin or round, often have a smaller premium. That does not mean the value of any Gold bar sold back is low. Historically, it was easier to own bars and is by virtue easier to pass down. Plus, they often come in higher weights, which means higher total value.
Gram Gold Pieces – Gram Gold pieces, whether rounds, bars or coins, were easier to trade and barter with than full troy ounce sizes. They were also easier to obtain and certainly more affordable, which stands true today. Many refiners create gram Gold pieces as an easy way for both investors and collectors to begin or add to a Gold collection. There are many different iterations from many different mints.
European Gold Coins – European Gold coins can be purchased stateside but collectors may have obtained them while overseas. These are common to soldiers or contractors who were stationed overseas and bought or obtained as a memento. They were used as currency from the 1800s through the 1930s, so many types of European Gold have made it into family histories, passed down from generation to generation.
#4 - Find a Trusted Buyer (Online vs. Pawn Shop)
Once you know your Gold, you must decide where to sell it. Selling online vs. at a local coin shop might seem like a risk at first glance, but that is why you’ll want to find a reputable, trusted online dealer, like APMEX.
You might wonder if the most convenient place for you to go is a pawn shop or a local coin shop. Sure, it carries the benefit of being able to talk to someone in person and to walk out with a check that day. But chances are, these pawn shops are going to try to lowball you and you’ll likely walk out feeling insulted and maybe even a little angry.
These places sometimes prey on people who know little or nothing about the true value of their Precious Metals, so their sales tactics can get pretty aggressive.
If you decide to go to a brick and mortar pawn or coin shop, it is imperative you know the current spot price of Gold (and don’t forget the Bid and Ask Price!) before you walk in. If possible, you should also provide some kind of documentation of your ownership, if you have it available.
#5 - Consider Selling Your Gold to APMEX
Online Precious Metals Dealers, like APMEX, can offer you better prices than pawn shops or coin shops. Over the last 18+ years, we’ve purchased over $1 billion in Precious Metals from people just like you.
By selling to us, you can also avoid the high-pressure tactics and aggressive employees that are common with side-of-the-road dealers.
Selling your Gold to APMEX is easy and fast. We’ve completely reinvented and modernized the process with YOU in mind. Here’s how it works:
- Create a free account online and give us a call. Our friendly, no-pressure APMEX team will even help you identify products if you don’t know what you’re holding.
- Lock in your price. Once APMEX has determined the products you want to sell, you will be quoted a price you can lock in immediately.
- Ship your product. We’ll send you all packing instructions and shipping labels to download and print. Pack your Gold products and drop it off at UPS.
- Get verification. APMEX will authenticate each item, verified by members of the numismatic (coin experts) team.
- Get your money. Our 1-Day Guarantee means you’ll be paid in 1 business day from the time we validate your products (some restrictions apply).
Request a Quote
Regardless of which path you take, we hope this article has been educational and that you’re now better informed on how to sell Gold!
You can request a quote from APMEX at any time to get an idea of what we would offer for your Gold products. And once you are ready to sell, give us a call so you can get paid fast!