How to Pawn Jewelry: 5 Tips to Keep in Mind

February 29, 2020 - Jewelry & Luxury Items

Diamonds are forever, or at least until you need to sell your jewelry.

Not all jewelry is valuable but knowing how to pawn your pieces will ensure you’re getting the best possible deal as you part ways with grandma’s earrings.

Here are 5 tips to keep in mind when pawning jewelry.

1. Know the Value

You should know the value of what you have before you step foot in a pawn shop. You’re very unlikely to ever receive the full value of any piece you pawn because pawn shops are resellers, but knowing in advance what it’s worth will give you more bargaining power.

2. Always Negotiate

You can negotiate for a better price.

This is where it’s important that you know the value of what you have.

It’s a good idea to start your negotiations high. This will give you something to step down from.

3. Clean Your Jewelry

You wouldn’t try to sell a car after you’d been 4x4ing offroad. The same concept extends to any jewelry you want to sell. You want your pieces to look as presentable and attractive as possible.

You should clean any jewelry you intend to pawn. If you’re unsure of how to clean your pieces have a professional jeweler do it for you.

Different metals and gems require different cleaning methods and this is something you don’t want to get wrong. Incorrect cleaning can damage or even destroy certain jewelry. If in doubt, pay a professional.

4. Presentation Matters

Pulling a messy tangle of gold out of your bag is the quickest way to signal to a pawn shop clerk that you don’t know what you’re doing. They’ll either assume what you have is cheap or, if the piece is valuable, they’ll think you don’t know what you have.

Presenting your jewelry properly is the best way to avoid this first impression. If you have the original packaging for your pieces that’s ideal but jewelers will often have surplus cases you can buy for very little expense.

Proper boxes also ensure your newly-cleaned jewelry is kept clean and undamaged.

5. Know the Gold Prices

If your jewelry is gold then you will want to know the price of gold. These prices fluctuate and so you need to look up the current prices just before you intend to sell.

If the gold prices are high, you might be able to make more money by selling through a shop that specifically buys gold.

Keep in mind that such facilities will only pay you for the gold value. If your jewelry has diamonds or other gemstones selling to a pawn shop instead will account for the cumulative value.

Now You Know How to Pawn Jewelry

Know the value of what you have, present it in its best light, and don’t be afraid to negotiate for a better price. Knowing how to pawn items is a skill but it’s one that won’t go to waste.

Looking to pawn a leather jacket? Here’s how to determine its value.

David Stiebel
David Stiebel

David Stiebel is one of the cofounders of PawnGuru. David was educated at MIT, where he studied Math. He subsequently worked at Bain as a data scientist before starting PawnGuru in 2015. He started PawnGuru to build a better tool for pawn shops and consumers to connect.

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Avatar for Jocelyn McDonald

Jocelyn McDonald

April 22, 2019, 12:23 PM

My grandma left me a lot of her old jewelry when she passed away, and since I never wear it, I’m considering selling or pawning it. Your article had some great tips I could use to pawn this jewelry, and I liked how you said to consider getting it cleaned by a professional, as I want my pieces to look as presentable and attractive as possible. Thanks; I’ll keep this in mind when pawning my jewelry.

Avatar for Taylor Anderson

Taylor Anderson

July 29, 2019, 7:15 PM

I like how you mentioned that one should consider cleaning the jewelry they want to pawn, as it makes it look more attractive. My grandmother left me some jewelry, but it really isn’t in my taste. These tips could help me pawn it, so thank you for sharing them.

Avatar for Kate Hansen

Kate Hansen

December 5, 2019, 9:29 PM

It was helpful when you said that before you go to a pawn shop, you need to know the value. I have an old diamond ring that doesn’t fit me anymore and I was thinking about taking it to a pawn shop. I’ll make sure to keep this information in mind as I search for a pawn shop to go to.

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