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Common Questions about

Jewelry Appraisals

Jewelry is a major purchase and should be insured like other valuable items.  The first step is to have your jewelry evaluated by an experienced and well trained Gemologist.  At Troy Vinson Jewelers our appraiser is an In Residence Trained Graduate Gemologist from the Gemological Institute of America as well as an American Gem Society Certified Gemologist Appraiser.  Our appraiser has the educational and gemological background plus 36+ years experience to provide you with an accurate evaluation that can be submitted to the insurance carrier of your choice. Your jewelry deserves protection and security. You deserve peace of mind.

1. Why do I need current Insurance appraisals for my jewelry?

By far, the most important reason is for insurance purposes. Over the years, the value of your jewelry and gemstones can fluctuate greatly. If your last appraisal is over two years old it may be out of date and, as a result your jewelry could be insured for less than its current replacement value. That means you risk a substantial financial loss if your jewelry is lost, stolen or damaged/destroyed. For your protection, it is recommended you have your jewelry appraised every one to two years. Troy Vinson Jewelers will provide you with accurate appraisal reports based on current market values so you can obtain adequate insurance coverage of your choice.

2. I have homeowner’s insurance. If I lose my jewelry, am I automatically covered?

You are NOT covered for loss or damage unless you have your jewelry appraised and scheduled separately. Troy Vinson Jewelers will carefully document your jewelry piece by piece so you can have it properly scheduled.

3. What is included in a Troy Vinson Jewelers appraisal?

Each Troy Vinson Jewelers appraisal includes a complete appraisal report for your records. The appraisal contains such information as:

A.) A detailed description of gemstones and diamonds with carat weight, cut, clarity, color and measurements.

B.) A description of the mounting including measurements and description, the fineness and weight of precious metals.

C.) A photo of each piece.

4. Do I need to make an appointment for an appraisal?

Yes, it is necessary to schedule an appointment. This helps the appraiser to set aside the valuable time necessary to perform your appraisal in a precise manner and provide a time for you to pickup your items.

5. Do I have to leave my jewelry with you to be appraised?

Yes, to help ensure your jewelry to be appraised correctly we will clean and check each piece. This will ensure correctness of measurement and color of stones for accuracy.

6. How much should I expect to pay for an appraisal?


Troy Vinson Jewelers charges a flat, per item, fee. This fee is based on the time necessary to perform all tests, take measurements and photographs of each piece of jewelry and to do the proper market research.  The fee is $100.00 for one or first the piece and $65.00 for each additional piece when taken in as one appraisal group on the same date and time.  We do have to charge extra for Charm or Slide bracelets as each charm/link must be described.  Fees are not determined by the value of the jewelry taken in for appraisal.

In Residence Trained GIA Graduate Gemologists receive Diplomas because they actually attended one of the campuses of the Gemological Institute of America for the entire course and did not learn via the U.S. Mail or the Internet.   Distance Educated Gemologists only receive Certificates.  This is an important distinction.  The G.G. diploma awarded to In Residence Trained Graduate Gemologists is one of the most prestigious credentials in the industry.  GIA Graduate Gemologists hold the comprehensive knowledge of diamonds and colored stones needed to identify and evaluate your jewelry and create an appraisal that is accepted by most insurance companies in the world. 

We are very fortunate at Troy Vinson Jewelers in that our Graduate Gemologist has degrees not only from the Gemological Institute of America now located in Carlsbad, California but also has a Certified Gemologist Appraiser® title from the American Gem Society. 

The American Gem Society is dedicated to building trust and confidence with the jewelry-buying public. With that in mind, American Gem Society members aim to provide their customers with the very best service and information available in appraising diamonds and gemstones.

Certified Gemologist Appraisers of the American Gem Society possess the necessary skills and experience to render valuation reports for your jewelry items. They have been educated in both gemology and the methodologies of jewelry and diamond appraisals.

The American Gem Society’s Certified Gemologist® Appraiser (CGA) title is the most highly regarded in the industry. Earning this title requires a diploma in gemology and additional advanced education, and experience in determining the value of gemstones and jewelry.  All CGA titleholders also must pass annual Recertification exams to maintain this prestigious title.

The CGA must maintain an Accredited Gem Laboratory®, consists of a gemological reference library and the gemological testing equipment necessary to provide accurate identifications.  There’s no better source for fair and accurate appraisals.

Our American Gem Society Accredited Gem Laboratory® contains:

Reichert Binocular Microscope with dark field illumination

Kalt 2x Adapter

Table Gauge

Diamond light cabinet with GIA and the AGS graded master comparison diamonds

GIA Color Grading Disc


Refractometer liquid

Polarizing filter

Heavy Liquids

Fiber Optic Light Source

Kee Gold Tester and Metal Testing Acids

Leverage gauge and tables

Screw micrometer

Electronic gem scale (Mettler Toledo JB703-LC) with Specific Gravity Adapter Set
Electronic metal scale (AND EK-1200i)
Ultra-violet light (long- and short-wave) unit
10X hand loupe
Electronic thermal tester
Chelsea color filter
Ultrasonic jewelry cleaner
Steam jewelry cleaner
Digital camera

Microscopic camera with display screen


Sarin DiaScan+ Machine®

Yehuda Sherlock Holmes 3.0 synthetic/simulant tester

We also have a Complete portable gem laboratory.

Remember, the value assigned to jewelry can vary depending on the function of the appraisal or report, so it is essential to establish your needs and purpose of the appraisal with your appraiser.

Since a jewelry appraisal may be one of the most important and complicated documents to complete accurately, only a credentialed professional should provide information and reliable documentation on the quality and value of your jewelry. That is why it’s essential to work with an unbiased appraiser you can trust, a gemologist appraiser certified by the American Gem Society.

Please feel free to contact us.

We have jewelry professionals ready to help.

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