What is Diamond Appraisal
Diamond appraisal is a vital activity for any new diamond buyer. Diamond Appraisal is a method whereby an expert diamond appraiser, or experienced diamond examiner, does a series of inspections of the various qualities of a diamond to establish the grade of the diamond which then helps to set its actual value.
Such things as the color and clarity, for example, of the diamond are inspected with sophisticated equipment and the diamond is compared with a number of other diamonds whose characteristics are known and established.
Each quality can be measured and the appraiser has a chart of the various gradings that can be attributed to each characteristic.
For example. Fluorescence has the following grades, each of which, when established, would affect the overall value of the diamond.
N, NO, NON, - No Fluorescence
F, FB, FT, FA, - Faint or Faint Blue Fluorescence
SL, SLB, SLT, - Slight Fluorescence
M, MO, ME, MD - Medium or Moderate Fluorescence
S, ST, STB, STG, - Strong Fluorescence
E, EX, EXB, EF, - Extreme Fluorescence
A diamond with extreme fluorescence would have a great value than that with little or no fluorescence.
Other characteristics such as color, polish, symmetry, girdle, clarity among others, are all taken into account when a diamond is being assessed or evaluated.
When a diamond has been appraised, a certificate is issued which outlines the gradings of the various qualities of the diamond. The appraiser, however, does not value the diamond. He simply shows the grading of the various qualities such as color, clarity, cut and of course carat weight, among others. An independent jeweler can give an estimate of the value based upon the appraisal. One could even get a very good idea oneself by browsing online and doing a comparative study of the various gradings of the diamonds available online.
Some jewelers simply emphasis the weight of a diamond and do not discuss other important factors such as the cut, color, clarity and carat weight (known as the 4Cs). Partially because they do not want to confuse the buyer but also in some cases, because they do not want to discuss the possible lower grading that particular diamond has received (as you can be assured that the diamond will have been appraised at one time or another so it's true value will be known) if it is being sold at a price that a higher grade diamond would get, since this might affect their profit margin.
Oh, and a certificate which a jeweler has run up, by the way, is not the same as an authentic appraisal certificate from an established gemological laboratory. As in many buying situations it is a case of "buyer beware", and there is no substitute for knowing your product and doing some due diligence on it. More information about appraisal and where to get it is at
Price of Diamonds.
If you want to rest assured that the diamond you are buying is genuine and worth something close to what you paid for it, then it should be independently appraised. This means paying a recognized gemological laboratory to appraise the diamond and list out, on a certificate the gradings of the qualities of the diamond so a true value can be established. The cost is usually minimal, especially compared to the value of the diamond, and it may save some unpleasant shocks later down the track if you ever come to sell the diamond.
In addition it is often a requirement by insurance companies as they also want to be sure, in the event they have to make a payout, that it is on a genuinely graded diamond and not a inferior stone.
About the Author: Michael Moore is an Australian author on the subjects of precious metals, gemstones and information about protecting oneself on the internet from fraud. Some books are available at Gold Century press.