I would be willing to bet that at least 50% of people don't know the difference between 'pawning' to a pawnshop and 'selling' to a pawnshop. That's OK, though. Pawnshops can be confusing. We are one of the oldest forms of banking, but the majority of people have never stepped foot into a pawnshop.
We're here to change that.
Pawning and selling are two different animals, although the words are almost always used interchangeably. Here's what we tell our customers in order for them to decide what they should do with their items:
IF YOU WANT YOUR ITEM BACK, YOU NEED TO PAWN IT. IF YOU DON'T WANT IT BACK, YOU NEED TO SELL IT.
That's the super simple answer to the question. If you pawn something, you have the opportunity to come back and pick it up. It's a loan. If you sell something to us, it's done. You no longer own the item and the pawnshop will sell it after the hold period.
That's the easy answer, now let's dig a little deeper.
WHICH ONE PAYS MORE? PAWNING OR SELLING?
This can be a loaded question. There are a lot of factors that determine which one pays more. Some pawnshops might give you the same price either way, others might give more for pawning than selling. It all depends on the location you're at and what that pawnshop prefers to do. However, here's what our shop does:
AT OUR SHOP, YOU TYPICALLY GET MORE MONEY TO SELL YOUR ITEM.
Let's stress the typically in that statement. We typically give more if you sell the item because of one reason: the hold period.
We have to store every item we pawn or buy for 21 to 60 days. If it's a buy, we are only required to hold the item for 21 days before selling it. If it's a pawn, however, we have to wait 60 days before we are able to sell the item and recoup our investment. This is why if a customer can't decide whether to pawn or sell their item, we will offer more money to buy it in an attempt to give an incentive for them to sell the item.
Don't get us wrong, though! On a daily basis, we pawn way more items than we buy. That's our business model and it's what we prefer to do. However, we'll typically offer more money to buy an item from a customer in an attempt to help them make a better decision, and help us make a better investment. We don't want a customer to pawn their item if they truly do not intend to come back and pick it up. That's why we offer the extra incentive to sell.
WHEN YOU SHOULD PAWN YOUR ITEM
Regardless of how much is offered for the item, your biggest decision is whether you want this item back or not. That's what it's all about. We want what's best for you, and we want you to walk out knowing that you made the right decision. Here are a few situations that might help you decide whether pawning or selling is the right choice for you.
WHEN YOU JUST NEED QUICK CASH TO PAY A BILLMost people think that when they are in a money crunch, they should go to the pawnshop and sell something to get the cash. This is perfectly fine, but there's an easier way.
If you need quick cash to pay a bill or get you to the next payday, you should bring a valuable item that you own and just pawn it.Grab an item that you know is much more valuable than the amount of money you need. For example, I have a customer who regularly pawns his YETI cooler. His cooler is easily worth $400-$500. He only asks to pawn it for $80 to $100 each time. This might seem crazy to you, but we see two reasons that make him a very smart pawner.
First off, he's only borrowing the amount he needs. He's not coming in to get the most money he can because he truly wants to pick the cooler back up and just needs some cash until payday. Second, he decides to pawn his cooler instead of selling it. What if the very first time he did this, he sold his cooler to us for $250. Sure, he has more money at once, but he can never pawn that cooler again. It's gone.
If you need quick cash, and don't want to get rid of anything. Pawning is for you. Pick a valuable item that you know will get you the money you need, and pawn that. You pawn it, we give you cash, you later pick it up, and now you still have your item to pawn in the future if you need to.
WHEN YOU ABSOLUTELY DON'T WANT TO GET RID OF YOUR ITEMIf you 100% don't want to sell your item, just pawn it. It's quick, convenient, and confidential. You'll have 30 days to repay the pawn and redeem your merchandise, and if for some reason you can't do that, you can always make payments to extend your pawn. The only reason you should ever sell something is if you don't want it back at all. Every other situation should be a pawn.
WHEN YOU SHOULD SELL YOUR ITEM
WHEN YOU WANT THE ABSOLUTE MOST CASH FOR ITIf you want the best first offer from a pawnshop, tell them you want to sell your item. As we talked about before, pawnshops we'll usually offer more cash to buy your item because of the hold period. They are willing to give you more money to buy your item because they are able to sell it in 21 days. If you pawned the same item, but didn't pick it up, the pawnshop can't sell that item until 60 days, leaving the shop's money tied up for much longer.
WHEN YOU HAVE NO DESIRE TO GET IT BACKIf you have absolutely no desire to pick your item up, selling is for you. Think of pawning as borrowing money at the bank. If you go to the bank to borrow money and use your car as collateral, you probably have a specific reason why you need the money and what you're going to do with it. You also know exactly how much you need. No one borrows money on their car just to have more money. You typically do it in order to make a large purchase or pay a large bill. The pawnshop is the same way. Don't pawn something if you truly want to sell it. Sell it and get the most money while you can if you have no intentions of coming back for it.
Hopefully this cleared up a little confusion on pawning and selling! Just remember, if you don't want your item back, sell it and get the most money while you can! However, if you're looking to pawn, find a valuable item that will get you enough cash to take care of what you need to do, but not too much cash that you can't pay back. If you have any questions or comments you can always message us HERE or call us HERE. See you soon!