How to Prove Ownership of Gold Bars
High-grade gold bullion can come in the form of either bars or coins, and its net cost to produce them remains similar.
Bars come in various sizes and with various markings and packaging. Older bars may come without any packaging at all; newer ones often feature sealed bags containing certificates of authenticity from approved LBMA producers; these bars may only be stored within an IRA account.
Identifying Your Bars
There are a few key indicators you can use to verify the authenticity of gold bars. One is proper stamping with an easily recognized hallmark indicating its manufacturer and refiner; this helps establish their source, as any future buyers could request an assay test in order to validate its authenticity.
Weight can also be an indicator that could point to counterfeit products. Precious metals are measured in troy ounces; therefore if the bar appears significantly lighter or heavier than expected it could indicate its authenticity or falsity.
Last, but certainly not least, you can also test a bar for its purity by striking it against another piece of gold or silver. Real gold should produce a distinctive “chime-like” sound when struck against other precious metals; smartphone apps can even help perform this test for you! However, these methods aren’t foolproof so always bring along a digital scale when making purchases from dealers to ensure that you are receiving the best possible prices.
Notifying Local Authorities
If you find a gold treasure on state or federal land, it is important to inform the relevant authorities immediately. They will attempt to trace it back and find its rightful owner using markings or other factors; if this proves unsuccessful they may return it directly.
Pawn shops and jewelry stores may sell gold bars, but their employees do not possess extensive knowledge on them. Therefore, it is best to purchase them from an expert dealer with whom you feel confident doing business. A reliable dealer should possess a London Bullion Market Association (LBMA) good delivery list of producers as proof of their authenticity with each bar sold.
BullionVault provides daily proof of ownership of their clients’ gold by conducting an audit that is posted online and reconciled to an underlying vaulted store list. In addition, each investor receives their own digital record which is validated against their vaulted holdings each day using their unique nickname – this way we prevent embarrassment and costly disasters if their bars should ever go missing or stolen.
Keeping Your Bars Safe
Ideal, gold bars should be stored safely at home. While this is often the best solution, sometimes this may not be practical or possible if you reside in an unsafe neighborhood.
Keeping gold bars at home requires special precautions if you want to prevent unintended smudges from touching them accidentally and provide extra protection from theft or loss of the gold bars themselves. Cotton gloves may help avoid this happening accidentally while protecting it against further damage should it get lost or stolen.
Stamping and hallmarking your gold bar are also key considerations in its purchase decision, so if it appears without this information it may be unwise to purchase it – particularly if selling it later is in mind.
Selling Your Bars
Gold bars are an increasingly popular form of physical gold bullion investment. They can often be more cost effective than coins and easily stored away; additionally, smaller amounts can be bought and sold when making small-scale investments in gold bullion.
Gold bars’ values are determined by their weight and metal content, with bar purchases often being cheaper due to lower minting costs for coins than buying and selling bars directly. When purchasing precious metals or gold and silver bars from dealers it is essential that their pricing policies provide clarity regarding precious metal pricing as well as transparency of pricing structures for precious metals like bars.
When selling bullion in person is preferable to selling online, peer-to-peer sales or meeting up with strangers, as these may turn into scams. Instead, look for an established gold buyer in your industry and shop around for competitive pricing options.