Angie's List: Protecting your Valentine's Day investment

KANSAS CITY, Mo. - Megan Wright spent nearly four days searching her home for her missing engagement and wedding rings.

"I was physically sick over this. I overturned everything in the house that I could think of looking for them," Wright said.

Wright finally found the rings in her closet.

"My four year old daughter had been in there playing dress up. Swiped my rings, probably tried them on herself and she left them in the toe of my shoe," she explained.

Wright recently had her jewelry appraised, so she was prepared had her rings been gone for good.

If an item is lost, damaged, or stolen, an appraisal provides a detailed description of the piece.

The appraiser should go into enough detail that you could recreate the piece if you needed to.

You'll also need an appraisal if you want your jewelry insured.

"Having your jewelry appraised can make sure you have it valued at the correct amount, especially with the fluctuation we've seen in gold prices," said Angie Hicks of Angie's List. "The pricing and value of your jewelry can and does change overtime so you want to be sure you've got it insured for the right amount. If it does end up lost or stolen you get the right return."

"Because of the volatility of gold, especially, it's been very important that you have it checked every few years," said jeweler Greg Bires. "Gold was three, four hundred dollars an ounce four or five years ago, now it's twelve-hundred dollars an ounce."

Have your items appraised at least every three to four years. Expect to pay anywhere from $25 to $65 per item.

Angie's List warns you should choose your appraiser wisely. Check for certification by a group like the American Gem Society.

And steer clear of any appraiser who charges you a percentage of an item have an appraised value.

Appraisals shouldn't take much more than a day, so be wary if the appraiser wants to keep your jewelry much longer than that.

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