When it comes to getting cash for gold, pretty much everyone knows high-quality gold jewelry (even if it’s broken) can yield an amazing financial return when it’s melted down and refined. And those gold fillings and crowns? Literally worth their weight in, well, gold. But while those may be the most obvious sources of gold in your home, they’re far from the only sources. In fact, a lot of homes in the U.S. contain a fair amount of scrap gold (and other precious metals) just waiting for someone to recognize their value. Here are the five most common - and most often overlooked - sources of scrap gold that could be hiding in your home, garage or workshop:
• Old glasses: Lots of older glasses (typically those made before 1975, when gold was still relatively cheap) contain gold or are “gold filled,” which means they have a thick - and valuable - gold coating placed on the frames.
• Cell phones: Outdated phones may not have any resale value on the cell phone market, but they can still be valuable in terms of the gold connectors and circuit boards they contain.
• Desktops and laptops - even old game systems: Gold is a great conductor or electrical currents, and that’s why it’s often used to coat electronic components, most commonly in circuit joints, relays, contacts, switches, and wires.
• Junker cars: Your old car can still serve you well by giving up the gold it contains in its computer circuitry, catalytic converter and heat insulating components, as well as some other parts.
• VCRs, stereos, and radios: These AV items may have outlived their usefulness in terms of entertainment value, but inside, there are circuit boards and connectors, and many of those tiny internal components are made of gold.
What Do I Do with Gold?
Now you’ve searched your home for gold, what can you spend all that extra cash on? How about these super-costly items that contain their own measure of gold?
• You can be the king (or queen) of style with a gold shirt made by Rankar Jewelers. This blinged-out shirt is made of 14,000 pieces of 22-carat gold, and it’s available for just $250,000.
• Fit out your loo with Hang Fung Gold Technology Group’s solid gold toilet. Valued at $2.5 million, the toilet is located in the company’s rest room, and it’s never been used. To go with it, consider a roll of toilet paper for $1.3 million from The Toilet Paper Man.
• Deck your home for the holidays with an $11 million Christmas tree from an Abu Dhabi hotel. The Guinness Book of World Records says it’s the most expensively decorated tree in history.
• And under that tree? How about a $7.5 million poker chip set from Geoffrey Parker? The chips are filled with 18-carat gold and set with precious stones.
• To top it all off, how about a nice bowl of chocolate pudding decorated with edible gold leaf? At $35,000 it’s a relative bargain - and it’s topped by a 2-carat diamond. It’s available at an exclusive inn in England’s Lake District, and you’ll need to order it two weeks in advance.
So get to work on that spring cleaning, and start mining your home for gold. You may not find enough to buy any of the costly gold items listed above, but you just might uncover a nice chunk of change.