In the early 1900s, nothing said elegance like sterling silverware. At one time in America’s history it was absolutely necessary for every household to possess at least one set of sterling silver flatware. To take out anything else when serving guests was a breach of etiquette at best. Today, the average American doesn’t have much use for silverware that requires frequent polishing. Despite that, many families still have silver flatware sitting in their homes. This is often because people simply don’t know where to sell silverware.
Selling silverware can be a particularly profitable enterprise, yet surprisingly few people engage in it. One of the main reasons for this is that most people are uncertain of the worth of their items. While an exact appraisal may require an expert, there are a few tricks a layperson can use to analyze their silverware.
The first thing one should do when appraising silverware is check whether said silverware is sterling silver or if it’s just silver-plated. Most people don’t realize that the term “sterling” is actually legally binding, and means “92.5% pure”. Sterling silverware possesses some sort of marking denoting its purity. Some marks to look for are “sterling”, “925”, and “coin”.
The next thing to do when appraising silverware is to check the current silver spot price. The spot price is essentially the current market price of silver per troy ounce. After checking the spot price, weighing one’s silverware should allow one to calculate a minimum price.
Lastly, one can look for unique attributes of one’s silverware that can raise the selling price. For instance, certain patterns on silverware can drive the price, especially if said pattern proves that the item predates the 1920s. In addition, owning a complete set of silverware will often also cause the price to rise.
While these tips will allow one to do some basic appraisal, there is still the issue of where to sell silverware. One idea is selling to a smelter. Smelters will normally melt down any purchased silverware, and pay the seller by the amount of silver, rather than by the worth of the piece.
Another option is selling silver to silver matchers. Silver matchers pick up silverware they believe a collector will be interested in, and can get you the best price. However, one will normally have to wait a long time for payment. Moreover, if the collector refuses the silverware, it will be shipped back at the seller’s expense.
The final option is selling silver to a trusted online dealer. Such dealers often offer both fair prices and speedy payment. For instance, we have skilled appraisers that can tell you exactly how much your silverware is worth.