Anyone who’s ever worked (or thought about working) with a gold broker has inevitably come to a realization: gold pricing fluctuates! And this truth doesn’t only refer to the price of gold bobbing up and down on the market or against the dollar. Instead, it might refer to the other factors that will determine the price you can fetch for the spare/unwanted gold that you sell to these brokers.

It’s hard to find a direct answer to why the price of gold can’t always be exactly pinned down – and that’s precisely because the answer is a bit complicated. But if you’re looking to get educated about pricing from gold buyers, this article will help you gain deeper insights and understanding about the entire gold selling process.

Let’s start with looking at gold pricing from the buyer’s perspective.

First, we have to consider the type of buyer you’re working with. Chances are that your gold buyer will fall into one of two categories: a company or an individual. Though it might not seem that these types of buyers “should” offer you approximately the same amount of money for your gold, there are a number of variables to consider first.

In both cases, there’s a good chance that the gold buyer who takes your valuables off of your hands will be looking to turn a profit. This is, however, less likely when you’re working with an individual: individuals may be more concerned with collecting gold for some other aesthetic or intrinsic purpose. With gold companies and brokers, this is far less likely, as they’ve got to turn a profit on a month-by-month basis.

These differences could lead to a high degree of variance in the offers the buyers are willing to make.

Consider this situation: you have an old antique made out of gold that needs repair. After advertising the antique online as well as getting quotes for the gold itself, you have a couple of brokers and individuals interested in buying the antique. An individual who believes that your antique may be severely undervalued will be willing to make a more extravagant price offer on your antique. A gold broker, on the other hand, will most likely be concentrating on the gold content itself.

In that situation, the type of buyer you have will have a great effect on the price you’ll fetch for your gold.

Let’s consider the broker’s perspective, as well. Selling to a gold broker can be just as advantageous as selling to an individual, but this will depend on the article you’re selling in the first place.

From the broker’s perspective, we know that buying and re-selling gold is a process that can generate consistent profits, as long as the process is performed a certain way. Gold has to be purchased below its market value in order to pay labor, equipment, and transportation costs, as well as making a profit upon re-sale of the melted down gold.

For this reason, an offer from a gold broker will typically fetch you less money for your gold than current market prices indicate.

There is an advantage to selling to a broker, however, just as there are advantages in selling your gold privately. Gold brokers will be able to pay consistent prices (along with the market’s fluctuations) for articles that might not have any redeeming value to any other investors. Sometimes, a solid but slightly under-valued offer from a gold broker is simply the best price you’ll be able to get.

Again, the different factors that go into gold pricing will depend on the individual articles of gold being sold.

The kind of price that you can expect to fetch for your gold will depend on the amount of value that you bring to the table. You can’t expect to “fool” many gold buyers, even on sites like eBay.com, where buyers will be looking at your merchandise with a skeptical eye. You can expect to sell most of your gold articles for a modest but fair price as it relates to gold’s current market value.

Too many people unrealistically think that the gold they own will result in a financial windfall. It’s possible that it will, but unless you’ve had a tremendous amount of work or luck in acquiring the gold you’re trying to sell, it’s safe to say you should be more realistic. It is very hard to predict the future of gold pricing.

Don’t let that discourage you. Remember: the more you know about the gold buying process, the better you’ll be able to take advantage of different variables and factors in order to perform the best you possibly can.