How to buy scrap sterling silver

Written by cari haus
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How to buy scrap sterling silver
(luxury silver tray with elegant silver tea pot image by araraadt from

The best investment in an economic depression is precious metals. Silver is very cheap right now. It has historically been valued at 1/16 the price of gold, and at less than £13 an ounce, it is real bargain. But to find even cheaper prices, consider buying scrap sterling silver. In times of hardship, scrap sterling silver can be melted to increase the value. It is a great investment that will increase in value over time.

Skill level:

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Things you need

  • Magnet
  • Water
  • Salt
  • Aluminium plate
  • Water softener powder

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  1. 1

    Find a store with scrap sterling silver. Check at garage sales, flea markets, pawn shops and thrift shops. These places usually have scrap sterling silver for sale. Watch out for high prices. Sometimes the price will be raised just because the item is an antique. Also check with older relatives, because many people inherit silver items that are valuable as antiques. Do not tell anybody about trying to buy silver, because most thefts occur from close relatives or friends.

  2. 2

    Identify the type of silver. There are different types of silver used in the construction of various items. Sterling silver is 92.5% pure silver. It is important to make sure it is sterling scrap silver instead of plated silver or another metal. Take the magnet and run it over the silver area. Pure silver is not magnetic, so if the magnet pulls against the silver, it is silver plated or a different type of metal. Make sure not to miss tarnished silver, which can be easy to do because it looks much darker.

  3. 3

    Buy the silver. Do not let the owner know that the reason for purchasing the item is the scrap sterling silver content, because he will try to raise the price. Try and haggle down the price a little bit before paying for the silver. Talk about how the item has a little bit of sentimental value since it is reminder of days gone by. Profess ignorance about antiques or any type of valuable collectibles, and the scrap silver should be a bargain purchase.

  4. 4

    Clean and store the silver. If the silver has a dark or brass colour, it is tarnished and needs to be cleaned. Take water, salt and water softener powder and make a solution inside of an aluminium plate. Take a sponge and rub the solution into the silver. Once the tarnish has been removed, store the silver in a secure, locked location. It may be tempting to brag about buying silver for a super cheap price, but remember that most thefts come from relatives or friends.

  5. 5

    Sell the silver. Make sure the item does not have antique value before parting with it. Look in the Yellow Pages for a local refinery. Make sure the silver collection is at least 2835gr, because most refineries do not wish to bother with smaller pieces. Visit at least two to three refineries to be sure of getting the best price. If anybody else besides a refinery offers money for scrap sterling silver, do not accept, because she will likely plan on taking the silver to the refinery herself for a higher price.

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