Pawn Shops: Lender of Last Resort

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In today's tough times, if you need money and can't turn to a bank, one option is to turn to lenders of last resort... pawn shops.

In todays’ tough times, if you need money and can’t turn to a bank, one option is to turn to lenders of last resort… pawn shops. But is that a good idea?

“You always have people that are down and out, you know it happens everywhere and that’s one of the reasons pawn shops have been around.”
-Richard L. Scheinman, Pawn Shop Manager

Pawn shops are certainly nothing new: shops that lend money against your possessions have been around in one form or another since biblical times. And as you might imagine, when times are bad, business is good.

“We’re getting people that are coming in that have never been here before. They’re selling their gold, they’re selling their electronics, they’re selling tools.”
-Richard L. Scheinman, Pawn Shop Manager

It’s no secret that interest rates on these types of loans are amount the highest you’ll find, making pawn shops lenders of last resort. But if you’re coming here, there are things to remember to get as much as possible when you pawn.

First, decide if you really want… or can realistically expect, to get the item back. Because if you’re really just selling your stuff, you’ll probably get more for it by putting it on eBay.

Then visit a pawnshop and see what’s selling. Ask the pawnbroker what’s hot…and what’s not.

“Popular items right now obviously is gold. Everybody has gold that they want to get rid of or I shouldn’t say that, that they want to borrow money on. But tools are a big thing or some types of tools. TVs and electronics are very big.”
-Richard L. Scheinman, Pawn Shop Manager

And shop your item around… and let the pawnbroker know it!  You’ll almost certainly receive different offers in different places.

And don’t forget that pawnshops do more than loan money. They also sell stuff. So even if you find this isn’t a place for a borrowing bargain, you might find it the perfect place for bargain shopping.

Stacy Johnson

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