If you are like many Americans, you are tightening your belt and watching your budget a lot more closely lately. Does that mean you can’t enjoy some of the finer material things in life? Not if you know where to look. Buying at less than retail can yield some great bargains—especially if you aren’t addicted to having the newest gadgets the moment they are available on the market. There are a lot of tricks to finding just about anything you need for less than retail, and your local pawn shop in Northern VA is a great place to start. But what do pawn shops offer, and what are the best buys in such a place?
What Is a Pawn Shop?
If you’ve never been to one, don’t be scared off by dramatic television versions of dark and scary places equipped with a surly and heavily bearded guy behind the counter. The vast majority of pawn shops are respectable establishments that are well-lit and run by people who are more than willing to answer your questions. Similar items are grouped together for your convenience, and you are free to wander around and take a look at what is for sale, which is usually an eclectic mix of just about anything from DVDs to power tools, from electronics to musical instruments. People bring items they own and negotiate a sale price with a shop representative, which is paid in cash. The shop then sells the item at a price that will bring them a profit.
What Do Pawn Shops Offer?
You can find just about anything in a pawn shop, as people bring in a wide variety of items to sell. Some pawn shops specialize in a particular type of item, such as jewelry or power tools. Most of them carry whatever they find to be of value. What you won’t often find in a pawn shop is clothing, unless the clothing item is significantly valuable in some way (i.e. a top designer brand, a quality wedding dress, or a specialized item worn in a specific industry and that is either hard to find or is very valuable). Small household appliances like blenders or hand mixers (which are usually cheap and of low quality), books, cell phones, or fine art are rare, if you find them at all.
What Are the Best Buys at a Pawn Shop?
Some of the best buys at pawn shops are jewelry, televisions, game systems, guns, and power tools. You can also find great deals on big household and yard work appliances as well as musical instruments—especially acoustic and electric guitars. Electronics are generally less than two years old, so if you don’t mind getting a television that isn’t top of the line, you can snag a great deal for a very decent set that will last you for years. Pawn shops are also great places to sell your valuable jewelry, and they will accept broken or unmatched sets made of gold for a better price than most companies that offer to buy your gold jewelry. A pawn shop in Northern VA is the perfect place to start shopping for needed items at less than retail or for Christmas or birthday gifts that are unique and that don’t break your budget.
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