So, you’ve all been following along with The Silver Experiment (and if you haven’t, start here) to see if my thrifted silver finds are worth more than I paid for them.
I sent my finds to an online buyer; they offered free shipping, and have a good rating with the BBB. This saved me the hassle of trying to find a reputable buyer.
The company was very prompt; I got my offer within a few days.
The results were… mixed.
The ashtray and bracelet: paid $7.
I was offered… $0.44 . Boooooo.
The mixed group of Sterling and silver plate: paid $1.10
I was offered… $5.41 !
Still, if you put both trips together, it’s a loss of $3.15 . And that stinks. But I’ve learned from the experience of trying to find silver in thrift stores.
What did I learn?
One, that there isn’t a ton of Sterling silver out on the thrift store shelves, but there is some.
Two, that the weight of the item (as well as it being real Sterling, and not just silver plate) is the important thing. So a pretty but petite necklace will probably fetch far less than a pie server.
So is it actually worth it to hunt for silver at thrift stores?
For my purposes, I’d have to say no. It’s not worth doing if that’s all you’re looking for. I think you’d spend more in gas money driving from store to store.
However, if you’re thrifting anyway and there’s a bin of 10 cent cutlery, I think it’d be worth it to take a peek. A few forks and spoons can add up.
I hope you enjoyed this series! I had a lot of fun hunting for silver and learning about the differences between Sterling and silver plate, what markings to look for, and finding out that some people are extremely passionate about searching for silver as a hobby.
I really appreciate all the time and energy silver hobbyists have spent putting together blog posts and videos about silver. Thank you for all the effort you put in so noobs like me can learn too!