Many problems arise when buying a diamond from an Internet jeweler rather than a brick and mortar established jewelry store. Yes you can save money by purchasing a diamond from an Internet jeweler, but the savings may not be worth the problems and time most people never consider. Most Internet jewelers are reputable and honest, but you may find one whose ethics are not quite satisfactory. We have included a list of questions to ask when dealing with an Internet jeweler at the end of this essay.
There is no guarantee that the diamond you purchased matches the gem lab certificate that is advertised for that diamond. When the diamond arrives, your personal obligation is to take the diamond with the gem lab certificate to an independent appraiser. The appraiser will verify that the diamond you received matches the gem lab certificate for that diamond that you ordered online.
This appraisal should cost you anywhere from $50 to $100. Diamond Inspector recommends the Professional Gem Services (PGS) laboratory. They offer the service called: “Second Opinion”. Please see their ad on our website to help with your purchase.
If the certificate and the diamond do not match, the Internet jeweler could claim that you switched the diamond on them. You have no recourse at all in a court of law. You will be stuck with your purchase. Some Internet jewelers use a gem lab as a delivery agent for the purchase, so an independent observer at the lab reviews the diamond and the certificate before you take possession. Professional Gem Services (PGS) laboratory offers such a service. Please see their ad on our website.
Even if the diamond and the certificate is a match, you still have to take the diamond to a brick and mortar jewelry store to select a ring and have it set. What if you select a disreputable retail jeweler who switches your diamond for a lower quality? Most jewelers are reputable and honest, but you must do your research to deal with a reputable jeweler.
Even if the jeweler is reputable, he has to have his diamond setter set the diamond into the ring you have chosen. It is rare, but diamonds do chip and break during the setting process. What if the diamond setter chips the diamond, who takes responsibility? The retail jeweler will not take the responsibility for a $5000 plus diamond when selling you a $500 ring.
The diamond setter either works for the jewelry store or is independent and does not have insurance. The Internet diamond seller will not take responsibility for the broken diamond because he had nothing to do with the labor of setting. So who becomes responsible? You, the buyer, must bear the risk and responsibility.
If you buy a mounted diamond from an internet jeweler, how do you know that the diamond in the ring matches the gemlab certificate? You must still take the ring to the independent appraiser to have it analyzed to verify that the diamond matches the certificate. Professional Gem Services (PGS) laboratory does offer this type of service. Please see their ad.
Here are some questions to ask of the jeweler you are considering:
How long has the Internet jeweler been in business? Do they have a brick and mortar retail store or are they just located on the Internet? The longer in business, the better your chances of receiving years of expertise while dealing with a reputable firm.
Do they back up all telephone verbal promises in writing? Whatever is told to you on the phone, have them email it to you on company letterhead.
Does the sales slip verify the same information as the gem lab certificate? Have them email you a copy of the official receipt to verify that it matches what is told to you.
Does the Internet jeweler allow you to take the diamond to an independent appraiser to verify that the diamond matches the certificate and the sales slip?
What is the Internet jeweler return policies? Have them email you the store policy in writing.
What is the guarantee if the diamond or jewelry does not match the quality that it is sold as? Will they take back the disputed jewelry and substitute the exact like kind and quality that was sold to you in writing?
If you purchase a diamond from a virtual internet jeweler
Step One – First select the correct diamond for your budget and desires.
Step Two – Confirm the jewelry company’s return policy, the longer the better.
Step Three – Confirm the exact delivery date and time for your diamond.
Step Four – Select an independent diamond appraiser who does not sell diamonds but only appraises. They will be unbiased and neutral in their advise to you. Setup an appointment for the same day as the diamond arrives to you.
Step Five – On delivery day and appraiser appointment, confirm with the gem lab that the certificate supplied with the diamond matches the diamond.
Step Six – If there is any doubt, get the appraisal in writing to verify your reason for return to the internet jeweler. Have the appraiser seal the diamond in the box in front of you and pay the appraiser to ship the diamond back for you. Call the internet jeweler to advise them of your return and the reason for the return