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Frequently Asked Questions
Do you BUY gold, diamonds, platinum, watches, etc.? Even old or broken items?
YES. We will buy your items in any condition. New, used or broken – no matter what the condition – you can bring all your items in for cash today!!
Do I have to repay my pawn / loan? And if I do not pay?
NO. We give our pawns / loans with “no strings attached,” meaning you are not obligated to repay your pawn / loan if you do not want to. However, your merchandise will be sold if you do not repay your pawn / loan by the due date. The decision to repay or not repay your pawn / loan is YOURS!!!
Do I have to pay interest on my pawn / loan?
YES. All Pawnbrokers charge interest for their services, but shop around!! You will find that our state regulated interest rates are lower than most other Pawnbrokers in New York.
How do I get my merchandise back? What if I do not have the money to repay my pawn / loan?
All merchandise is kept in safe deposit, so you must call the phone number on your Pawn Ticket to arrange for a pick-up. If you do not have the cash available before your due date, you can pay only the Finance Charges due, as listed on your Pawn Ticket, to extend your pawn / loan for another four (4) months.
How do I know when my pawn / loan is due? Where can I find my "Pledge Number" for referencing my pawn / loan when calling for information, pick-ups, etc.?
Both the due date for your pawn / loan as well as the “Pledge Number” are prominently listed on your Pawn Ticket. In addition, we will send you a reminder notice in the mail 30 days prior to the due date of your pawn / loan.
Are Pawn Shops a "bad times" industry?
NO. Pawnshops survive bad times if they make adjustments both at the retail and loan counters, but they do far better in good times. In hard times, customers move away to find employment, have less ability to repay their loans and the value of all merchandise goes down. Merchandise values go down because the major retail discounters sell for less to maintain or broaden market share. If retail merchants sell for less, pawnbrokers must loan less thus earning a smaller return. Regardless of income level, most people periodically borrow money. In good times, customers are more able to repay their loans and unredeemed merchandise sells faster because customers have more discretionary income.
Do pawn shops downgrade the neighborhood or hurt property value?
NO. Neighborhood property values are impacted by the appearance and care given to the properties. There is no factual basis to support a claim that an eye-pleasing pawnshop negatively impacts values. On the contrary, if they attract customers, they enhance the opportunities for other merchants and the community.
Are pawn shop rates excessive?
NO. To provide any type of loan services, financial lenders must charge rates that are commensurate with the risk, size and duration of the loan, collateral offered, and recourse. Pawn shop loans are small dollar, high risk, short duration loans. The item stands as the sole collateral offering no other recourse. And pawnbrokers are liable for replacement value if something happens to the item in their care. There are no hidden charges as with other lending institutions. On the other hand, pawnbrokers cost basis is far greater. We incur cost for security, handling, storage, and regulation not incurred by other financial lending institutions. Due to the 15-20% of pawn shop customers that elect not to repay their loans, pawnbrokers are forced to turn their “bad debt” into a retail center to recover their cost. Other lending institutions do not incur retail cost including additional floor space, gondolas, counters, personnel, advertising, shop lifters, retail competitive cost, and new merchandise cost to supplement the unredeemed goods.
Are pawn shops good for a community?
YES. Pawnshops are neighborhood businesses providing vital services to the community. We support local businesses and charities. The services provided by pawnshops include:
1. Discount Retail (new and preowned) is an opportunity for customer to make their dollars go further – it helps other merchants and community by giving them more discretionary funds to buy other products elsewhere.
2. Short-term credit enables the community to pay the bills of other local merchants such as groceries, medical expenses, utilities, auto and transportation to work.
How does a pawn shop work?
Pawnbrokers lend money on items of value ranging from gold and diamond jewelry to musical instruments, televisions, tools, household items, and more! These items maintain their value over a reasonable period of time and are easy to store, especially jewelry. All customers provide collateral, eliminating the need for us to distinguish high risk borrowers from low risk borrowers. Typically, loans average between $100 and $400, although they can be as small as $20 or as high as several thousand dollars depending on the value of the collateral. Contracts vary from state to state, but the average loan period is 120 days. Generally, interest rates will vary with the amount of the loan. The process is much the same as any other lending institution, with the primary difference being the size of the loan, the collateral and the holding of the merchandise until the interest or the loan has been repaid or the loan period expires.
Why would someone go to a Pawn Shop to get a loan?
Pawnshops offer consumers a quick, convenient, and confidential way to borrow money. A short- term cash need can be met with no credit check or legal consequences if the loan is not repaid. A customer receives a percentage of the value the broker believes the collateral would bring in a sale. Although the loan to collateral ratio varies over time and across pawnshops, a loan of about 50 percent of the resale value of the collateral is typical. In other words, pawnbrokers feel their loan is “paid in full” at the time it is made. When a customer pawns an item, terms of the loan are printed on the pawn ticket that is given to the customer. The ticket states the customer’s name, address, type of identification provided to the pawnbroker, a description of the item, amount lent, maturity date of the loan, interest rate for the loan, and the total amount that must be paid back to redeem the item. Most states (including New York state) regulate pawnshop interest rates and other charges, such as storage or insurance fees.
What is the forfeiture procedure?
If a customer defaults by not repaying the loan, the collateral becomes the property of the pawnshop after the loan is overdue by a specific amount of time, generally one month. At All Island Jewelry & Loan, we will notify, by mail, the owner of the pledge, that he/she will lose the right to his property unless he redeems it within the stipulated grace period.
Do most pawning customers lose their merchandise?
NO. On average, 70 to 80 percent of all loans are repaid. Repeat customers make up most of our business, similar to any other lending or retail establishment. Pawnbrokers know the vast majority of their customers because they often borrow against the same items over and over again. Pawnbrokers offer non-recourse loans, looking only to the item being pledged to recover their investment should the borrower choose not to repay the loan. It is solely the choice of the customer whether he/she elects to repay the loan.
How can I be sure the merchandise I purchase at a Pawn Shop isn't stolen?
Less than one fifth of one percent of all collateral is even suspect as having been misappropriated in any manner. Thieves and robbers are a pawnbroker’s worst enemy. Pawnbrokers work closely with local law enforcement to catch and prosecute these perpetrators. A customer must provide positive identification to show evidence of the transaction. This information is then presented to the police department, therefore decreasing the likelihood that a thief would bring stolen merchandise to a pawn shop. Pawnbrokers are trained to look for signs of stolen property to avoid these costly mistakes. It is not in the interest of the pawnbroker to accept potentially stolen merchandise because the police can seize the merchandise and the pawnshop owner loses both the collateral and the loaned money.
What is the difference between buying at a Pawn Shop and buying at a retail store?
Mainly price. Pawnshops can offer you merchandise ranging from 1/3 to 1/2 off retail prices.
How has the image of pawnbroking changed since the 1960s?
Today’s pawnbroker is looking to attract a broad range of clientele. Everything from the interior and exterior of his or her shop location, employee presentation, customer service, signage, marketing and the merchandising approach has been upgraded throughout the industry. Pawnbrokers focus on providing exceptional customer service and are very active in the community, both politically, and in local charities. Pawn shops today range from a single and multi-store operation to publicly held company chains.
Who is the typical Pawn Shop customer?
The typical pawn shop loan customer is employed, living within 15 miles of the store, is of either sex, and occasionally needs short term cash for an unexpected bill such as a medical expense or car repairs. The typical pawn shop retail customer is a bargain hunter, either by need or desire, and comes from all walks of life. At All Island Jewelry & Loan, many of our customers have been our customers for years. Whether pawning or purchasing, they know us and trust us to be honest and fair.
Should photographing or fingerprinting pawn shop customers be required?
NO. Pawn shop customers provide full identification with each transaction, a copy of which can be made available to local law enforcement. Additionally, most pawnshops maintain surveillance cameras in their stores, the same system used by banks. To require anything more than required by banks implies there is a relationship between how much money one has and their integrity. You have questioned the quality of their character based on financial status – a form of discrimination.