Jewelry is a pricey commodity and also considered a rather large investment. Most people look for fine jewelry such as gold necklaces or diamond rings at their local jeweler, but the price tag can sometimes cause sticker shock. Pawn stores are a great alternative to the higher priced jewelry stores, but before you head out to your local pawn shop to buy that pair of emerald earrings, here are some tips you should follow to ensure you get the most for your hard earned money.
Trust Your Gut
If you go into a pawn shop and the counter person doesn't seem to know a whole lot about the jewelry they're selling, you may want to look elsewhere. A reputable pawn store should have an experienced jeweler on staff who can answer your questions and verify that the items you're interested in are authentic and high quality. If it feels wrong, it probably is. Make sure you do your homework and ask plenty of questions before you make a purchase. Most pawn stores do not offer refunds and all sales are usually final, so it's best to make sure you are buying a high quality item the first time.
Know Your Price
Before you buy a jewelry item at the pawn store, have a firm price in mind you're willing to pay before you go in. Be prepared to bring cash, which will give you a lot more bargaining power. Have an idea of what the going price is for certain pieces of jewelry so you know you're getting the best deal and not overpaying. Ask the store if they provide certificates of authenticity with their jewelry, which can help you protect your investment and give you more money later on if you ever plan to sell it.
Look For Defects
Most reputable pawn stores only sell high quality jewelry, or they at least mark items that may have flaws. Be sure you check for any defects in the jewelry you're interested in, such as missing stones, scratched gold, or dented items. The pawn shop will usually thoroughly clean their jewelry before displaying it, but they will also typically sell some items that are slightly damaged or broken. Keep in mind that it is ultimately up to you, the buyer, to determine which items are not to your standards. Ask the clerk if you can look at pieces up close and have them remove them from the case so you can get a better look. If you play your cards right, you're sure to find a beautiful piece of jewelry at the pawn shop for a much better price than retail. Check out stores like Advanced Pawn Shop to get started.