Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Three Guidelines for Working with Pawn Shops

If you need to borrow some money on a short-term basis, a bank is not your only option. Pawn shops in Northern Virginia can act as a bank if you have something of value that you can pawn. Pawning is the act of taking an item of value and using that item as collateral. If you pay the loan back according to all of the terms, you can have your item back. Information obtained from a 2010 survey conducted by the National Pawnbrokers Association indicates that about 70%of all people do pay their loans and get their property back. 

Following are some guidelines to help you work with a pawn shop for a short-term loan:
• Find a reputable pawn shop to work with.
• Find the right shop for your particular item.
• Know the value of your item before you begin negotiating terms.

Find a Reputable Pawn Shop
Some brokers run reputable businesses while others do not. In order to protect your interests, you should do some research to find a reputable business. There are many online sights that will give you reviews about businesses. These include,, and Google+. When you read the comments, pay attention to what the reviewers are saying and look for trends. Random negative comments do not weigh as much as multiple negative reviews that focus on the same issue. In addition to online reviews, you check with the Better Business Bureau. The BBB will tell you if any complaints have been submitted about a company and whether or not those complaints were resolved.

Find the Right Shop
Just as all pawn brokers are not alike, not all pawn shops are alike. Some shops have specialized in different areas. For instance, if you have an antique, you will get better pricing and loan terms if you take your antique to a shop that specializes in antiques. The same applies for tools, jewelry, etc.

Know the Value of Your Item
Before you take your items to a shop, determine their value. Get estimates from jewelers, antique dealers, or other sources. Look up the price for a similar new and used item. Pawn shops in Northern Virginia will be more likely to give you the value that your item is worth if you can take documentation proving that value.

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