A Commercial Real Estate Agent’s Guide to Finding Precious Metals in Buildings

If you’re a real estate broker or developer who deals in industrial or commercial properties, you don’t want to overlook precious metals that could be hiding in the properties that you have bought or represent.

Shown: business for sale sign, which could mean there are valuable precious metals waiting to be recycled inside. If you're a commercial real estate broker, contact Specialty Metals today.

Here is a checklist of places where precious metals could be found in the properties you are working with.

  • Batches of unused welding or brazing supplies – Welding rods and wires often contain quantities of silver and other precious metals that can be profitably reclaimed. Even if you only have scrap pieces of leftover welding rods, they can be valuable.
  • Drums of unused industrial chemicals – They are often worthless. Recycling them responsibly could be costly and difficult. Yet depending on what they were used for, they could contain quantities of precious metals that can be reclaimed.
  • Metals shavings, powder, small bits and other scrap – If metal was being machined in a facility that you have acquired, even the shavings that have piled up under lathes and milling machines could be valuable. Unless you have them analyzed, you will never know.
  • Sludge, sand and industrial byproducts – Depending on the type of processes that were taking place in the facility you own, seemingly worthless materials could contain precious metals.
  • Tanks, pipes, electrodes, and filters that were used in plating processes – If a factory was involved in electroplating, silver or even gold could be recyclable from older components.
  • Catalytic converters that were attached to old diesel or gas engines – They can contain quantities of platinum, palladium, rhodium and other valuable precious metals.
  • Chemicals or supplies that were used in photoprocessing or x-ray processes – Even in a time when the use of traditional films and papers is dwindling, supplies that are left over from those processes are worth recycling because they contain silver.
  • Older computers and electrical devices of all kinds – Older desktop and other computers and electronics, for example, contain gold that can be worth reclaiming.
  • Old gauges, safety cut-offs, and monitoring devices – They are lying around collecting dust in many old factories. But depending on what their purpose was, they could contain valuable components like thermocouples that contain precious metals.
  • Medical testing devices – Old x-ray, MRI, and other medical devices that have outlived their usefulness can still contain lots of valuable metals, including gold, silver and even platinum. They might look like they should be headed to the scrapyard. But don’t send them there until you know about the metals they contain.

Want to Know More?

We are here to help you understand where precious metals can be found. For a no-obligation conversation with our specialists, call us at 800-426-2344.

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