Need Cash Fast? 10 of the Best Things to Pawn

Do you need a little extra cash in a hurry? If you’re in a pinch and need some money, the solution might just be lying around your house.

Pawn shops are in need of items to sell and they will pay you money for things you no longer want or need.

You may be wondering what items do pawn shops want? And which items will fetch the highest dollar?

Read on to discover how pawning works and ten of the best things to pawn for extra money.

Pawning 101

How does pawning work? Pawn shops are best utilized as a last resort. They offer you a short-term loan requiring collateral. In other words, you give them something of value for collateral and in return, the pawnbroker lends you money.

When you pay off your loan, the broker will return your merchandise. 

Alternatively, you can sell your item outright to the pawnbroker and keep the cash.

Pawnbrokers will appraise your item to determine the value. Here’s our list of the ten most valuable items to pawn.

1. Jewelry

Probably the most popular merchandise to pawn is jewelry. It’s also something that can deliver a nice payday from a pawnbroker. 

The best jewelry to pawn is gold, although most pawn shops will take silver if you give them a large amount of it.

The broker will appraise your gold according to its purity (karats) and weight. Of course, the broker will offer you approximately 50% of the value so if you don’t pay the loan, they can resell the item for profit.

Diamonds that are at least 1/2 karat and gold which is 12 karats or higher will give you the highest returns.

2. High-End Electronics

Pawn shops love to buy and sell high-end electronics, which are always in demand.  The best electronics to pawn include large flatscreen TVs, digital cameras, newer gaming systems, laptops, smartphones, and tablets.

You can expect to receive roughly the same amount that you would get for selling your electronics on Craigslist or eBay. If your item is in good condition and you have everything that comes with it, you can expect a competitive offer for your goods. On the other hand, if you are missing items such as cords and accessories, your offer may decline considerably.

3. Watches

High-quality watches are valued highly at pawn shops. They know watches are a status symbol that usually sells fast.

Clean your watch and confirm it looks top-notch as brokers will not take watches that have too many scratches or blemishes.

Make sure to bring the original paperwork as proof of authenticity to get top dollar. Remember that quality brand names matter. For example, you can expect a Rolex, Panerai, or Hublot to net you around $1,000.

4. Collectible Coins and Currency

You never know how much money some of your belongs are worth. That is especially the case when it comes to collectible coins and currency. Those old coins in your basement you haven’t thought about in years just may bring a tidy sum.

When an item is rare or has historical significance the dollar value can be considerable. If you suspect your collectibles or currency is valuable, research it online. Gather as much information as you can so you can negotiate a fair exchange with a pawnbroker.

5. Antiques and Memorabilia

The value of memorabilia changes from year to year based on current trends. But many collectibles are consistently worth good money. Pokemon, Beanie Babies, and Star Wars items are examples of valuable collectibles to pawn.

Again, research the trends online and see what your collectibles are selling for on eBay before visiting your local pawn shop. You never know, some nerdy collectibles may be worth millions.

6. Power Tools

Power tools are another popular seller. It doesn’t matter if they are gas or battery powered. All that matters is that they are clean and that they work properly.

These tools have a way of getting dirty so it’s a good idea to give them some soap and elbow grease. 

Charge your batteries or fill them with gas as necessary. Then gather the owner’s manual and all tool components and bring them to your pawn shop.

7. Firearms

As you might expect, guns are popular items at pawn shops. That said, many only accept antique guns so call ahead to make sure they will take your firearm and that they are licensed.

Guns retain their value very well and you can expect $300 on average for your firearm.

8. Bicycles

Many pawn shops accept bicycles on a couple of conditions. Typically, the bike must be a popular brand name such as Trek, Bianchi or Cannondale. It also needs to be in outstanding condition.

Most pawn shops won’t take cheap bikes from department stores as there is no resale value. They also won’t take bikes with bent frames or major damage as they are difficult to sell.

Again, it’s a good idea to see how much your used bike is selling for online before visiting a pawnbroker.

9. Musical Instruments

Has it been a while since you last played your guitar? You may want to consider pawning it or any other musical instruments you no longer want.

Many parents do not wish to spend big dollars on a brand new instrument for their child. If their child doesn’t enjoy playing the instrument, they are out hundreds or even thousands of dollars, depending on the instrument.

To that end, pawn shops have become a popular place to find affordable instruments, which is good news for you. If you have a brand name instrument from companies such as Fender, Yamaha, Gibson or Rhodes, you can expect a competitive offer for the pawn.

10. Cars

A pawn shop might not be the best place to get a fair price for your vehicle. But if you’re in need of immediate cash, they can help you out in a pinch.

Many pawn shops now accept vehicles as collateral or for purchase. In fact, you may be able to pawn a vehicle, motorcycle, boat or even an RV.

Of course, you’ll need to bring the title, registration, and your ID to the pawn shop.

Final Thoughts on the Best Things to Pawn

No matter what you pawn, make sure the item is in its best possible condition. Items which are clean and work properly are always going to bring higher appraisals than those which are dirty or broken.

Don’t make the classic mistake of expecting top dollar for junk. The best things to pawn are items which are valuable to other people. You’ll get your best offers from pawnbrokers when they know their customers will value your items.

If you find this article helpful, please check out six types of personal loans to consider for quick cash.

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