Picking a precious metals dealer to work with is one of the most important decisions you will make.  Here are 5 important considerations when selecting a dealer:

Reputation

As Warren Buffet famously quipped, investors should be more concerned with the return of their money than the return on their money.  Likewise, investors should find a dealer than will do what they promise 100% of the time.  No games, no gimmicks, no high-pressured sales tactics.  Here are some questions to ask:

  • Are they BBB Accredited?
  • Do they have positive reviews from independent review sites like GoldDealerReviews.com?
  • Do they have detailed buying & selling terms?
  • Do they have a good reputation with partners in the industry?

Do they offer a straightforward, all-inclusive price?

Many dealers intentionally shade the final price from customers so you can’t compare their prices with other, more transparent dealers.  You should know the final, out-the-door pricing including all fees, commissions, shipping, insurance, etc.

At Cornerstone, you’ll never have extra fees, taxes, or commissions.  All orders less than 20 oz of gold or 500 oz of silver are subject a flat shipping and handling fee of $25.  Aside from that, the per oz price we quote is your only cost.

What is their policy of locking in an order?

Some dealers require you to prefund an account before you are eligible to order.  This means that you may be days or even weeks away from being able to place an order with them . . . and who knows what the price of gold and silver will be at that time?  Others require that you present your credit card at the time of order to lock in a price.  Regardless, you should know the ordering process and insist on a transparent, efficient ordering process.

“Buyback specials.”

Does the dealer offer special buy-back pricing only if you purchase the metals from them? This is a game many dealers play to pressure you into purchasing metal from them.  “If you buy these coins from us, we’ll pay you extra special pricing when you resell them to us down the road . . .”   That’s usually an indication that they are charging you too much to buy the coins in the first place, and so they have to scare you into thinking you’ll have a hard time selling the coins at a fair price if you don’t buy from them.

Any dealer worth their salt will have fair and honest buying and selling prices regardless of how long you’ve been a client.  And they will sell you commonly known coins and bars that can be easily liquidated anywhere in the world.

Are they offering “Limited Edition” coins?

Most “limited edition” coins are coins that generate high commissions for the dealers because “they aren’t available anywhere else.”  In reality, most precious metals investors buy and sell only the most popular forms of gold and silver coins or bars – eagles, maples, and well recognized bars mass-produced from reputable refineries.

Be very careful buying anything that has an additional premium because it’s limited edition.  If you are an investor, you want to buy gold and silver that’s immediately recognized and trusted around the world, so “limited edition” will often hurt you, not help you.