About Pawn Shops
The Traditional Legend of the Three Balls. The symbol of the three balls was part of the coat of arms of the Medici family, who established the Medici trading and banking empire in Florence, Italy. The Medicis were a 15th century Italian family of bankers and lenders, with considerable fame and fortune. They became so well known in the finance and lending profession that the other lenders, wanting to share in their success, adopted similar coats of arms, signs, shields and symbols, with three golden balls being the most popular. Once other merchants involved in monetary dealing adopted the three golden balls as their symbol, the three balls came to symbolize the entire profession founded on the ethic of mutual trust.
The pawn shop is one of the oldest businesses around. They were around in Ancient Greece and the Chinese have had pawn brokers for at least 3,000 years. Queen Isabella of Spain pawned her jewels so that Christopher Columbus could sail in search of a new route to the west Indies. In turn, he stumbled upon America. Throughout history, people from all walks of life have used pawn shops from Kings and the rich to your average Joe. You can buy and sell things at a pawn shop and use your valuables as collateral for a loan.
Pawn Shop Facts
- Pawn shops can buy your valuables or offer you a loan using them as collateral.
- Pawing in-person is the prefered way to transact. Face-to face-transactions offer an interative experience and helps to build trust while delivering greater value and customer satisfaction.
- Pawn shops are licensed by state and local government to offer customers loans. Resale shops, cash for gold places and buy sell stores are not. Gold Star Jewelry & Coin Co is licensed by the City of Chicago and the State of Illinois.
- The interest rates that pawn shops can charge are regulated by law. We offer some of the lowest interest rates in the City!
- Pawn shops are not “just for poor people”. Many of our customers are what could be described as being from a middle or upper-economic background. We are here to help all people get access to cash when they need it! When the banks aren’t lending, Gold Star Jewelry & Coin Co is. We always give you INSTANT CASH for your valuables.
- Pawn Shops are a great place to buy jewelry. We don’t charge the mark-up that retail jewelry stores charge. In fact, many jewelers are our regular customers. They buy low from us and mark up their prices to retail. When you come to Gold Star Jewelry & Coin Co, you will find jewelry prices at up to 80% off of retail. This includes name brand products and luxury watches!
- You must be at least 18 years old to pawn or sell an item, and you must show a valid state or national photo ID.
Pawnshops and pawnbroking have been around for thousands of years. The basic idea behind any pawnshop is to loan money. It goes like this:
- You bring in something you own and give it to the pawnbroker as collateral for a loan (this is called pawning).
- The pawnbroker loans you money against that collateral.
- When you repay the loan plus the interest, you get your collateral back.
- If you don’t repay the loan, the pawnbroker keeps the collateral.
Ten Tips for Pawn Shop Consumers
If you’re considering a loan from a pawn shop, use the following tips:
- Do your research: Do some online research to see what others have said about working with area pawn shops.
- Know the value: of the item in its existing condition before you make a purchase.
- Negotiate: Pawn store owners are resellers, not collectors. Set a minimum price ahead of time so you don’t make a quick decision you’ll regret later.
- Know if you want to pawn or sell: Pawn shops may give you the choice. The decision should be based on a number of things including your ability to repay a loan and the value you place on the item you are pawning or selling.
- Bring items in good condition: Polish jewelry and dust or clean the items you are looking to pawn in order to help make them more attractive to the shop.
- Shop around: When possible, visit more than one pawn shop to find the lowest interest rate for a loan or the best price for your item.
- Compare interest rates: Interest rates and fees on loans are capped or limited in practically every state. Generally, you can expect to pay anywhere from 3 to 25 percent in interest on your loan.
- Ask about extensions: If you can’t pay back your loan in time, ask the pawn shop for a time extension, but be prepared to pay more fees and interest.
- Get an appraisal: For items that may be valuable, consider getting a professional appraisal. You will have to pay for the appraisal, but you will gain important information.
- Choose a reputable pawn shop: Talk to the shop staff and broker first. You should feel comfortable with them before doing business.
Come in and see us . . . You’ll be glad you did!
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Gold Star Jewelry & Coin Co is open Monday through Saturday 10:00 AM until 6:00 PM. We’re located at 7048 N. Clark Street, Chicago IL 60626; Phone: 773.942.6556.