Right now, 63% of Americans live paycheck to paycheck. It is not always possible to cover all expenses until the next paycheck arrives. In times of uncertainty or difficulty, such as the current pandemic, you may need extra cash quickly to keep the bills from piling up. Even if you are not in dire financial straits, there may be another reason why you need the cash quickly. There are many ways to make money fast, and pawning items is a good one.
What does a pawnshop do?
The term âpledgeâ is sometimes used to mean selling something to a pawnshop, but âpledging somethingâ actually means using that item as collateral on a short-term loan.
If you are considering pledging an item, you have probably already considered working together or personal loans. If these options are not available to you, for whatever reason, pledging items you own might be a better alternative to an expired invoice or a payday loan.
Tips for Selecting a Pawnbroker
However, finding the right pawnshop for you and your item can be stressful in addition to an already difficult situation. You can follow these two simple rules when selecting a pawnshop:
- Don’t do business if you feel uncomfortable.
- Look for a pledge license.
These rules are the bare minimum if you have to go out right away. Otherwise, keep reading for more details on these two rules and six more tips for finding a pawnshop near you.
1. Find the ideal locations for pawn shops
Before you can decide if you want to do business with a pawnshop, you need to find one. The best place to start is to ask friends, family or colleagues for recommendations and locations. You may not know anyone who has used a pawnshop before. In this case, the best way to find a pawnshop near you is to use the Internet or the Google Maps locator.
On your smartphone, use the map application of your choice and use the search term âpawnâ. This will bring up several stores near you. Check their comments. Try to avoid pawn shops that have recently opened, have recently changed hands or owners, or have bad reviews. Above all, avoid pawn shops who behave unprofessionally in reviews.
After you’ve chosen three or four stores – if you have that many available to you – call them before you venture out. Sometimes you can tell over the phone if a business’s style will match yours.
2. Only do business when you feel comfortable.
Even if you have a looming bill and feel the pressure to get money, don’t ignore your gut feeling. Pawn shops, like any store, should provide you with professional customer service, so that you have a good experience and want to come back again. The staff should recognize you when you walk in and should not make you feel like your business is an inconvenience.
3. Check the pawn shops licenses
Pawn shops are required to have multiple licenses, depending on their state or local municipality and what they choose to accept. These licenses tell you that the establishment is legitimate and complies with regulations. In addition, it is illegal to operate a pawnshop without a license.
If a pawnshop has all the right licenses but isn’t more than happy to show you their licenses, it might not be the kind of pawnshop you want to be indebted to. for your loan.
4. Check the interest rates and other charges
Pawn shops are allowed to charge huge interest rates. Some states cap the interest rate pawn shops are allowed to charge, but that doesn’t necessarily mean they’re protecting the consumer. For example, Texas has an APR of 240% on loans up to $ 219.
Good to know
Pawn shops may also charge processing or storage fees. Check with the pawnshop about these charges before handing over your item. If they’re not open about the fees they charge, however, their fees can be much higher than the norm.
Some pawn shops include these fees when calculating their advertised APR, but many do not. You can take this into account when deciding if you can afford to repay the loan. Once you’ve signed your item as collateral but can’t repay the loan, know that your item is gone.
5. Ensure proper storage of your item
Make sure that the pawnshop you choose can store your item safely. If your item is a precious metal, jewelry, or other high value item, make sure the store has a safe to store your item and applicable insurance to cover loss or damage to your item. your article. Firearms should also be stored in a safe, both for their protection and the protection of personnel.
6. Make sure the staff are straightforward and honest
When you’re browsing a pawnshop and their staff don’t seem completely honest, you should take your item somewhere else. Research the price of your item online before taking it to the pawnshop. Ask questions about it.
Wanting to help a potential client is good service. A pawnshop might not give you all the details, but if they refuse to give you a reason or explanation for their valuation, you might want to question their decision; especially if their citation differs significantly from what you found in your research.
This fits with the first rule, but it bears repeating: if the staff of a pawnshop don’t seem upfront and honest, or they seem sketchy in any way, don’t do business with them. pawnshop.
To take with
Being able to consider a pawnshop is stressful. If you follow the rules and tips above, you will find a pawnshop near you that you might be comfortable with.
When you pay off your loan and get your item back, it’s time to make a budget that you can live with to hopefully avoid living paycheck to paycheck in the future.
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The information is correct as of November 5, 2021.
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