Consumerist has pointed out a discussion on ComplainsBoard about Cash4Gold, an outfit that promises top dollar for trading in your gold jewelery. With the tight economy and gold prices relatively high, many consumers will find this a good deal. Unfortunately, it’s not that easy to get the true value for your traded in items. A former employee offers testimony about this particular company’s practices.
Here are some of the good bits.
We do offer a 100% Satisfaction Guarantee or your jewelry returned, BUT THE CATCH IS, that the guarantee is to contact us within 10 DAYS from when your check is DATED. (This begins with the time it took for the accounts payables dept. to ISSUE the check and also including the TRANSIT TIME for you to receive your check in the mail. **** NOTATE THE COMMERCIALS THAT INSINUATE THAT YOU GET YOUR CASH IN 24 HRS.*** If you request (sign) for FAST CASH (direct deposit) you automatically WAIVE your rights to have your items returned, EVEN if you are not satisfied with amount of your deposit.
For those who do get in touch with us within the allotted time frame, we already know what you are calling about. Customers want their items returned, because there check amount is so insultingly LOW. The first thing a Rep will ask you is “HOW MUCH WERE YOU EXPECTING TO GET BACK?” This way we can know how much to “BONUS” you.
Definition of a BONUS: We issue low checks just to have you call us back if you are smart enough to realize that you just got scammed. For the smart one’s we are paid to offer u a bonus up to 3x the original amount of your check and you accept. For ex: Sally Smith receives a check for $27.86 for a Rolex watch(which we don’t issue value for), a class ring, a ring with diamond chips, a pair of earrings with emeralds, as well as a few sterling silver pieces, and maybe a few items that were really of no value. Now Sally Smith calls the cust srvc dept, where she speaks to a rep who seems so concerned and will see if she can do better with the amount by speaking to a “SUPERVISOR”. We then place the caller on Mute, and speak to our neighbors or doodle on a sheet, or twiddle with our hair for about 45 seconds, while we are supposedly speaking to our supervisor about Ms. Smith’s complaint. We then come back with an offer to “BUMP UP YOUR MELT DATE or any other lies the cust srvc reps can think of, and offer you a total amount of $53.20 which is a little under double the amount of your original check; in which case if you accept, the cust srvc rep makes a 15.00 bonus off of your transaction. If the customer service rep offers you under triple the amount of your orig check, he/she makes 10.oo in bonuses.
If you accept the offer, the deal is done, and you are told that the call is recorded (which most of the time, the record button does not work, or the box if full.)It’s just a way to make your feel binded by a verbal contract. IF you do not accept the deal, you have to return your check, and it takes sometimes up to a month to receive your items back after we receive the check.
All of the spelling and grammatical errors were in the original. If this story is true, and I suspect that it is, it is a shame that companies can get away with this behavior. If you must trade in your gold for money, find a reputable dealer in your area. Verify your choice with the National Association of Jewelry Appraisers or the American Society of Appraisers. And most of all, don’t expect to get “melt value” for your gold, but don’t get ripped off by an outfit like Cash 4 Gold, either.
Updated February 10, 2011 and originally published February 3, 2009. If you enjoyed this article, subscribe to the RSS feed or receive daily emails. Follow @ConsumerismComm on Twitter and visit our Facebook page for more updates.