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Protecting your jewelry from thieves
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An ounce of nearly pure gold is now worth about $1,430, and silver is close to $44 an ounce. This makes for a very lucrative source of income for thieves who want fast money. And since gold, in particular, has undergone their meteoric price increases, dealers wishing to buy these precious metals have sprung up almost everywhere. Not only are there new places to sell gold and silver to, but existing jewelry stores and pawn shops are anxious to buy all the gold and silver they can acquire. There is such a gold buying frenzy that it is common to see sidewalk advertisers waving signs that want people to sell their gold to them.

The honest, well-established jewelry dealers do what they can to avoid buying any stolen items, but there are plenty others who not only do not care about where the jewelry comes from, they actively encourage the thieves to steal more.

I should clarify that the current price extremes for gold and silver are for their nearly pure form. Almost all jewelry has a fair amount of hardening materials in it, so no thief can expect to get the pure form value from what they have stolen. Moreover, the gold and silver-buying dealers will pay prices substantially below the market value. Nevertheless, even at half or a third the pure form price, thieves are quite motivated these days. Just think about the effort they go through to steal aluminum, copper, brass and even just plain metal, which has just a fraction of the value of gold.

Most people who own any gold or silver products have it in the form of jewelry. Silverware, eating utensils, and fancy liquid containers, if they contain silver, are usually silver-plated and therefore have very little value. Stupid thieves may steal silverware thinking it has value, but when it comes time to sell these items, they are almost worthless in terms of their precious metals value. It costs more to remove the silver plating from silverware than the value of the silver that might be captured through the process. The same goes for gold-plated items.

There are many prison inmates being early-released from the state prison system, innumerable drug addicts that support their drug habit by stealing and the shortage of local jail space all contribute to keeping the number of criminals on our streets and neighborhoods very high. These communities in the Central Valley are filled with thieves on the prowl, looking for a quick buck, and now that they know about the value of gold and silver, your personal property is more vulnerable to theft than ever.

And while it may seem highly inconvenient and maybe even excessive, I am recommending that people find better ways to secure their valuables, whether in their homes, cars or elsewhere. Jewelry is safest when kept in a safe deposit box at a bank. If you have a few select pieces of jewelry that you wear regularly, hide or keep them with you - do not leave them in a jewelry box on a dresser or anywhere else for easy discovery.

According to one website that specializes in products for protecting jewelry, " way of protecting your jewelry from theft is by using a hidden jewelry organizer. Jewelry organizers come in a variety of shapes and sizes. Closet organizers can be effective for hiding your jewels while also protecting them. Most closet organizers are very plain and can be covered with other items to camouflage them even more. Also, hanging jewelry organizers often come attached to coat hangers that can be placed in between articles of clothing. Most thieves will not be interested in sorting through clothing which acts as a perfect hiding place."

The same applies to silver and gold coins, or any other smaller items of value. If you have silver dinnerware, put it in a safe place until, perhaps, the time comes when the threat of thefts and burglaries subsides.

It is advisable to photograph your valuables. If you have receipts for those items, save them, and if you want to have them insured, make sure your current policy actually covers their value. Some people have their valuables appraised to simplify the insurance reimbursement process.

That we even have to worry about a wave of thefts like this is very unfortunate. It says a lot about the moral decay of our society, and frankly, it foretells the future: we will have to become ever more vigilant as the number of criminals in our communities grows, and our personal belongings become more vulnerable. there is much you can do. With an awareness of these threats and a bit of effort, you can keep your belongings safe and out of the hands of criminals.