Four Tips For Buying Vintage Jewelry At A Pawn Shop

Business Blog

Pawn shops can be great places to find beautiful vintage and antique jewelry. Getting the best deal requires knowing a few tips of the trade before you make a purchase. Use this quick guide to help you find the perfect piece of vintage jewelry when you go shopping at your local pawn shops.

Know Your Jewelry Markings

Pawn shop owners typically do a good job of vetting each piece before they add an item to their inventory, but even some pawn shop owners can miss a treasure in their shop. Knowing your jewelry marks can help you identify valuable pieces you can purchase at a good price. Seasoned jewelry buyers know to look for the following types of marks imprinted on jewelry pieces:

  • Gold content marks
  • Silver content marks
  • Manufacturer marks
  • Country of origin marks

Gold content marks are used to denote the amount of actual gold in each piece, which is measured in karats. Manufacturer marks on vintage jewelry can help you to identify iconic brands that are valuable to collectors. Country of origin marks can sometimes make it easier to identify the age of a piece. In some cases, you might find an item that was manufactured in a country that no longer exists, which can give you a general time frame for when the jewelry might have been manufactured.

Don't Settle For The Advertised Price

When you shop at a pawn shop, assume that the price tag is a negotiation point. Once you have had a chance to inspect the piece of jewelry you want, work with the person behind the counter to settle on a price you can both agree on. If an item has been sitting for a long time without a buyer, the pawn shop owner might be willing to provide a significant discount even if the item is valuable. Of course, you have to ask to get a discount, so don't be afraid to inquire if you find a piece you love.

Ask About The Return Policy

Some pawn shops make all sales final, which means you can't return an item even if you find that it wasn't as advertised. Ask if the shop guarantees the authenticity of a piece before you buy. This is particularly important if you are buying an item you believe is a diamond. If your jewelry or appraiser inspects the piece and finds it is not a diamond, you may be able to return the piece to the shop. Knowing the return policy in advance can help you make smart decisions about what to buy from a pawn dealer.

Finding beautiful vintage jewelry at a pawn shop can be easy if you know what to look for. Do your homework and learn about different types of vintage jewelry before you shop, and don't be afraid to negotiate a price with the pawn shop dealer to get a great deal on vintage and antique pieces.


5 November 2015

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