Pawn Shop Business Up

By: Rhiana Huckins Email
By: Rhiana Huckins Email

You can sell your items or loan them out for collateral, and as desperate times call for desperate measures, many are walking through pawn shop doors.

"Every summer, our loans tend to go up and this year it is going up even more and i am sure it’s due to the economy and gas prices." says Bill Tatum, Co-Owner of Pawn City in Dothan.

Aside from the normal flow of people hawking their belongings, now are getting rid of some of their equipment as well.

"Unfortunately due to the economic crunch, a lot of workers are not working so I have seen a lot of tools right now. I get a lot of electronics... TVs and VCRs... DVD players, stereos. I got a lot of guitars for sale right now I guess a lot of musicians are having a hard time buying gas right now too." says Tatum.

As businesses are cleaning house, everyday shoppers are coming in looking to scoop up old goods for a cheaper price- which is how shops like these are thriving.

Mike Shields a Pawn City Customer came in looking for a new set or car speakers.
“New speakers will run around 109 per pair. I expect to spend 80 or 90 dollars."

And while some items are more popular to buy, Tatum says others are harder to sell.
"Right now we are giving out more loans on gold than anything, and it’s also a good time right now because the value of gold is up so you can get more for your gold at this time compared to last year."

The value of gold is so high that even broken jewelry is still worth something.
It’s measured by weight, so for example you could get 10 or 15 dollars for smaller chains, but several hundred for large pieces.

Some items that pawn shops cannot keep on the shelves include air conditioners and lawn equipment.
With summertime heat being at its prime, many are trying to save money and buy used.

And to deter criminals from pawning stolen goods, most pawn shops give item reports to local police departments with owner information and serial numbers.

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