How do you find a jeweller you can trust?
You may have been happy with your family jeweller. After all, your father recommended
him. But can you trust them?
Today, it is hard to know who is just in it for the money. Although a jewellery store is a
business like any other and needs to make a profit, you want to know the company
you are dealing with has your interest at heart.
Here are a few pointers and questions to ask.
1. Is your jeweller a member of the SA Jewellery Council?
Most professional jewellers belong to an industry body. If not, there could be a
reason why they are not recognized by the organization that represents our
jewellery industry. Stay away from such jewellers.
2. Is the consultant answering your questions?
A trustworthy jeweller will allow you to ask questions and take the time to explain
everything. Also, he will ask you a few questions, such as: "what you are looking
for, what your tastes are, what your budget is, and what the piece is for. This will
guide him in serving you better and meeting your needs, not his.
3. A reputation is worth a thousand words.
Word of mouth can be helpful. If your friends and family go to him and keep
supporting him, it's probably a sign they're satisfied.
4. RESPECT, means a lot.
When you tell your jeweller your budget, and he says: "Yes, but…" then you
should pause for a moment. A trustworthy jeweller will respect your budget and
not try to justify why spending more or buying bigger is better. A respectable
jeweller will show a range of products within your budget and work with you to
ensure a good balance between value and price. A jeweller should respect your
heirlooms, regardless of their monetary value.
5. Age before beauty.
How long a jeweller has been in business is a sure sign of trust. If the firm has
been around for decades and in the exact location, it means he has the
confidence of the community, which means you can trust him, too.
6. Does he explain rather than sell?
Does the jeweller take time to explain the four C's of diamonds? Or show you
sapphires and less expensive gems when you ask to see blue stones?
7. Does he know?
When you ask about lab-grown or fake diamonds, can he show you how he
differentiates between natural, man-made, and fake diamonds? Most good
jewellers will have a pen-like instrument to separate diamonds from fakes, such
as cubic zirconia, glass, moissanite, etc., but they still cannot identify lab-grown
diamonds. However, the best jewellers will have an expensive testing machine
such as the GIA iD100, Yehuda, or Gemetrix, that can separate natural from lab-
grown diamonds. If a jeweller sells lab-grown and natural diamonds from the
same premises and does not have such a machine, he risks unknowingly
swapping natural and lab-grown stones.
8. Does he own inventory or sell what he has to order?
If he offers you a list of hundreds of diamonds to choose from, is it his inventory
or an overseas list from which he has to order? When making a purchase of this
size and value, it is crucial that you look at the real items, not have to choose from
9. Does your jeweller have a clear and written warranty and return policy?
Do you know what will happen if he designs something for you and you do not like
10. Let him show you.
Good jewellers will have a 10x loupe, which is a magnifying glass for inspecting
gemstones. And if he lets you check out what he is offering, that is great for many
reasons. Firstly, you will be able to see the gem & it’s imperfections and know what
you are getting in quality. Secondly, having seen the unique imperfections in your
stone, you can always use the loupe to check that you are getting back the stone
you bought or handed in.
11. The best jewellers do not only sell jewellery.
They also clean, polish, and repair items, re-size rings, custom design pieces,
and identify and value gems and jewellery. And if he has a functional workshop
on his premises, your heirlooms never have to leave his premises.
Make sure your jeweller can do all these things and that he keeps a record of
valuation certificates and repairs done. Your future jewellery needs can thus be
served under one roof.
12. Trust your instincts.
We all have inner voices that tell us if something is not right. If the owner or staff
makes you uncomfortable, the premises look shabby, and the neighbourhood
dangerous, your gut will warn you. Listen to it – it is there for a good reason.
If you are looking for a jeweller who ticks all the above boxes, you will find him at:
PRINS & PRINS DIAMONDS, in HUGUENOT HOUSE an historic building in the
heart of Cape Town. Visiting them will be like going to see a friend.