Saturday, May 23, 2009

Jewelry Shopper's Checklist

Once you're ready to buy jewelry, shop around. Compare quality, price and service. If you're not familiar with jewelers in your area, ask family members, friends and co-workers for recommendations. Also, when ordering online and you've never heard of the seller, check on its reputation with the Better Business Bureau or the state attorney general's office. You also should:

  • Ask for the store's refund and return policy before you buy. When ordering online, keep printouts of the web pages with details about the transaction, including refund and return policies in case you're not satisfied.

  • Check for the appropriate markings on gold jewelry.

  • Ask whether a gemstone is natural, laboratory-created, or imitation.

  • Ask if the gemstone has been treated. Is the change permanent? Is special care required?

  • Make sure the jeweler writes on the sales receipt any information you rely on when you make your purchase, such as the gemstone's weight or size. Some jewelers also may supply a grading report from a gemological laboratory.

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