Uncut, or rough, describes diamonds before they are cut and polished into the glittering crystals usually associated with diamonds. Most uncut diamonds originate in Africa or India, and are sent to European diamond centres such as Antwerp, where they are cut and polished. Some stones, however, remain on the market as rough diamonds. Recent controversy has surrounded the trade in uncut diamonds from African countries that have used them to fund bloody civil wars. An international certification system has stanched the flow of these "blood diamonds" on to the markets, but fear of unsellable blood diamonds has cooled interest in purchasing uncut diamonds.
Have your diamond certified. There are several different labs that officially certify diamonds, although certification will not necessarily increase your stone's sale value. If you wish to get your uncut diamond certified, you can work with the The Gemmological Association of Great Britain.
Get an appraisal. The next important step is to get your diamond appraised. You will be given an estimated value for your uncut diamond. The actual monetary value of your gem when you sell it may not be the same as the figure quoted in the appraisal, but the appraisal should be the rough price you will receive.
Choose a company to sell your diamond to. Research this company to make sure that it is legitimate. You will most likely have to fill out an online form describing your gem to the company, and a representative will get back to you with a buying price. You can then decide if you wish to sell to that company, or to get quotes from other companies.
Depending on the company to which you are selling, you will either be paid immediately -- if you are conducting the transaction in person -- or you and the company will arrange a different method of payment. The value of the diamond will depend on its weight (carat), colour, clarity and the current diamond market situation.
The diamond industry is notoriously shady. Carefully research any company you decide to do business with to make sure it's legitimate. Whenever possible, work with reputable appraisers and buyers who are local to your area or who are members of a respected diamond market.