Why does the general public look down on pawn shops? When you think of a pawn shop, you might think of used boots and broken guitars. You might even consider a pawn shop to be a dark place inhabited by a really rough crowd. You might even be concerned for your safety. Why, though?
There is so much more to pawnshops. Think of Pawn Stars as an example. For years it entertained us, and helped us learn about art, history, currency and precious metals. While wildly entertaining, that show fails to highlight the true value of pawn for the general public. From that show, people look at it as a place to sell their items when their luck is down but it should be your number one option if you need money and want to recover your items for a fraction of retail. Let’s think of pawn first!
Pawn shops are some of the most financially sound places in the country. Like banks or credit unions, they offer confidential loans to people but unlike banks they do this regardless of your credit score or background. As soon as you pawn your item, you can get it back with minimal interest. It is the easiest way of getting cash quick.
Pawn Shops are an excellent source of funding as well. They deal in the precious metal market, so there is an expert there that will pay you a fair value for your jewelry, often more than your local jeweler that only recycles gold as a sideline. If you are in a tight spot, or just want to part from that piece from the 80’s, you can consult with experts and in minutes leave with money in hand immediately after an appraisal.
I have been to pawnshops in all 48 lower states. Most people don’t believe the things I tell them that I see in the community. Pawn shops’ generally offer an extremely wide selection with very fair prices. Inventory can include anything from fine art, to kitchen utensils, to jewelry. They are a one stop shop for everything you may need, with prices way under retail. A lot of shops include luxury items as well, such as Rolex watches, Yeezy and Jordan sneakers, VLone clothing and Be@rbricks. I’ve seen pawnshops sell cars as well!
It is time to change the public perception of what they may think a pawn shop is. The consumer can get a fast and large loan without a background or credit check. On top of this, funding is quick. Ready to let go? The consumer has the option to sell something right away, with money in hand after an appraisal by knowledgeable professionals. Pawn shops offer the variety and luxury with many items below retail. We can even buy and sell gold to hedge your retirement funds. So don’t judge until you have the facts. Support your community and visit your local pawn shop by going in and checking it out. You may be surprised.
Our refinery is based out of Rhode Island. It used to be the jewelry capital of the world. So, every other week when I am not traveling the entire continental United States, I am in my office. However, when I am fully prepared for the next week of traveling and meeting with pawn shop owners, I like to support and go visit my local shops. This week, I visited owner Alex DeLucia, of A Yankee Peddler & Loan in Connecticut.
While we were talking, and right before I scored a brand new Magic Johnson Mitchell and Ness Swingman jersey (for $40! I am telling you! Go to a pawn shop!), Alex had mentioned why he got into the industry. Rather than retelling you I thought I would ask him myself so you can all read it firsthand.
What got you into this industry?
It seemed an industry underserved by financially trained professionals.
What do you love most about it?
I love the fact that it’s a win-win-win. I once gave a customer a ten dollar advance on a Friday afternoon. He picked it up for $12 on a Monday. The financing fee is 7000% annualized, but it’s two dollars. Most people pay that to get money with their debit card. The smile on that man’s face as he got money for the weekend and as we shook hands and he redeemed his cross, convinced me I would love this work.
How can we start to change the public perception of pawn shops?
We change the perception one person at a time. When someone comes in and they see reality, they usually decide to visit again.
How can we support the industry?
P&C supports us by paying us fairly so we can do the same as we recycle precious metals. Support the industry by coming into our stores. It is as simple as that.