We’ve all been there: a bill is due, something breaks, and unexpected expenses pop up all at once, and payday isn’t happening anytime soon. In these situations, fast cash isn’t just nice to have—it’s a necessity. Fortunately, credible pawn shops offer convenient ways to secure a quick loan. The most trusted pawn shops will buy or loan on almost anything, from gold and silver coins to musical instruments. Here’s everything you need to know about them — and how they can help you.
What Is a Pawn Shop?
Simply put, a pawn shop is a place where you can get a loan in return for something of value that you own. A pawnbroker keeps the item until you repay the loan, plus any added fees. Generally, the loan is equal to a fraction of the item’s value, which is based on a few different factors:
The Market Value of the Item
This is one of the biggest factors when your pawnbroker is determining how much money they’re willing to loan. If you need fast cash, jewelry or gold and silver coins are good items to pawn; their value is established by the global market.
The Pawnbroker’s Current Inventory
Pawn shops are great lessons in supply and demand. If a pawn shop is already overflowing with guitars on loan, and you want to pawn your own guitar, the pawnbroker will likely loan you less money than if they only had a handful of musical instruments in their inventory.
How Pawn Shops Offer Fast Cash for Used Items
When you want to pawn an item, simply go to a trusted pawn shop with the item in good condition. If it uses batteries, make sure it’s charged so your pawnbroker can confirm the item works. Your pawnbroker will then evaluate the item and, if they’re interested, they’ll offer you a loan in exchange for your item.
Generally, you’ll have 30 days to repay the loan, plus any associated fees. Shops offer unlimited extensions, which means you can extend the loan on an item simply by paying a monthly service charge. You aren’t required to pick up your pawned item, either. In that case, the pawn shop will simply keep and resell your item.
If you want the most cash for used items, pawn items like TVs and computers, musical instruments, guns, gold and silver coins, and cars and motorcycles. And, if you’re ever in the market for affordable used goods, visit your local pawn shop—you could find some great deals.