Purchasing loose diamonds is probably one of the best ways of buying diamonds. The diamonds are easy to check and any flaws are not hidden by prongs, claws or the back of jewelry such as rings, broaches etc.
It is important to keep in mind a number of points when purchasing loose diamonds.
Firstly ensure that you select a good diamond dealer or jewelers. Places to purchase loose diamonds include, Antique Shops, Department Stores, independent jewelers, Specialist diamond dealers and cutters and lastly chain jewelry stores at the mall.
Of course one can also purchase from a private individual or at an auction, physical and online.
The main criteria here is to ensure that the seller is honest and, importantly, understands gems and diamonds and knows what they are talking about.
Whoever you buy from look for these following:
Is the seller easily contactable and available (especially applied with online purchases)
Can the seller answer all your questions intelligently and satisfactorily?
Does the seller offer a proper certificate of appraisal from one of the international an independent laboratories? See Laboratory List.
Do they accept credit cards? If the need arises it is far easier to get money back from a credit card purchase than a cash or check purchase.
Which brings up the point, does the seller have a returns policy? If not it is better to find one that does.
Knowing what you want in a diamond is very important. Having an idea of the size, quality and type is important so you do not get swayed in just purchasing the first ‘good deal’ you are offered. It may take you some time in your search to find the diamonds you are looking for but it will be worth it in the end as you will have exactly what you want.
Of course you should be sure you understand what you are looking for in a diamond. Do you understand the importance of the 4Cs? Can you pick out a good diamond from a poor one? Reading up on diamonds from the information contained on this site is a very good start. There is a wealth of information here to cover all aspects of diamond hunting!
Much will depend on your budget of course.
A good tip is to buy at just under half and full carat weights. The difference in price can surprise you and the difference in weight is fractions of a gram, hardly discernible to most people. But the difference in price can amount to several hundred dollars if not more.
The above points will go a long way to purchasing loose diamonds that are not too expensive but are of excellent value and will give years of satisfactory service.