Should I Buy a Laptop Computer at a Pawn Shop?

Should I Buy a Laptop Computer at a Pawn Shop?

Here at Central Mega Pawn, the Inland Empire’s leading pawn shop, we’ve had numerous customers ask us this question. After all, a laptop is a vital tool for many people these days, for everyone from high school students to professionals. Because quality laptops are not cheap, they can also be considered an investment; as such, smart consumers should do whatever they can to get the most bang for their buck.

We’ve bought and sold hundreds of laptops over the years and are excited to present a guide to buying a laptop computer at your local pawnshop.

Keep reading to learn about some variables to consider when making your decision.

Your daily computing needs

When buying any computer, an important question to ask yourself is what you will need your computer to do regularly. If it’s for gaming, for example, your needs will be far different than someone who needs a laptop primarily for word processing. Knowing what you will need your computer to do will help your pawnbroker find you the perfect laptop. You should consider things like:

  • Battery life: if you plan to use your laptop mainly near an outlet at all times, battery life may not be a concern. However, if you will need to take it with you, look for computer models that offer 8+ hours of battery life.
  • Platform: Windows vs. IOS is an ongoing debate, but knowing which platform works for you will help narrow down your search considerably
  • Size: in this instance, size does matter – if you plan to carry your laptop around, the difference in size could mean pounds. The smallest laptops, at around 11 inches, weigh around 2 pounds, while the largest, around 18 inches, weigh about 6 or 7 pounds.

Brands and platforms

Sometimes, consumers try to cut corners by buying an off-brand laptop at retail. While we won’t point fingers at the less dependable brands, we can say that buying a brand that you’ve never heard of often results in high failure rates, subpar performance, and a short life span.

On the other hand, buying from your local pawn shop can mean getting a top brand at the same lower price as a lower-tier model. Your money will go much further than buying retail or online, netting you more features and capabilities without the added expense.

Some of the highly-regarded laptop brands that Central Mega Pawn always has on hand include:

  • Apple
  • Dell
  • Asus
  • Microsoft
  • Samsung

The computers stocked at Central Mega Pawn, and at any other reputable pawn shop, are gently used and have been tested for functionality before they go out on our shelves. We would never sell inferior merchandise; our thoroughness means that not only will you save money, but you will also get a machine that will likely last for a long time.

Why buy your next laptop computer from your local pawn shop?

Your local pawn shop will only offer you the best merchandise they can find. They will not buy inferior brands or broken or out-of-date computers. As a result, the stock of computers at your local pawn shop will likely be current or recent models at significant savings.

When you buy from a reputable shop like Central Mega Pawn, you can rest assured that you are purchasing legitimate goods in proper working condition.

There are many pawn shops in your community. Each one is as different as the people who run them, so be sure to visit as many as you can in your area before you decide where to buy. Some shops specialize in jewelry, firearms or antiques. Others, like Central Mega Pawn, are experienced enough to offer top quality items of any type.

Best practices for buying a laptop at your local pawn shop

Before you step foot into the first shop on your list, do your homework. Know what you will need your computer for, what peripherals you may need, and what similar machines are going for on sites like eBay. Although you may expect a slightly different price than what you see at auction sites, completed auctions will give you an idea of your computer’s current market value.

If possible, bring a USB drive with you to test the computer’s ports, or a CD or DVD to test its optical drive. A reputable shop like Central Mega Pawn will be open to letting you boot up the computer, checking drives and wifi within reason while in the shop.

In addition to testing features like drives, you should also test out:

  • The keyboard and trackpad: are they responsive? Do any keys stick, or are there dead spots on the trackpad? Any signs of unresponsiveness in these heavily-used features will mean trouble ahead.
  • The display: are there any cracks, scratches, or dead pixels? While display issues will generally not impede a laptop’s performance, any sign of these could imply damage.
  • The power adapter: is the cord in good condition? Fraying or discoloration of the power cords and adapter are signs of fault, damage, or overheating.
  • The case: is it excessively scratched or dented? Even if the computer boots up fine, if you are looking at a computer with a hard disk drive, a damaged case could mean that the drive took some bumps with its previous owner.

Be prepared to negotiate. While your pawnbroker needs to make a profit, their priority is moving items off their shelves. If there are faults you can live with, ask if they can bring the price down a little. For example, if the power adapter that comes with the computer is discolored a little, you can try to use that as leverage, since you will need to buy a replacement power cord soon.

At the end of the day, where you buy such a vital tool like a laptop is a personal decision. But, we can tell you from experience that buyers can find great deals on laptop computers at pawn shops on a nearly daily basis.

If you’re on the hunt for a high-quality and relatively new laptop at a price far below retail and market value, you owe it to your budget to give your local pawn shop a chance. If you are in the Inland Valley area, come visit Central Mega Pawn and see what we can do for you!

Buying Designer Watches from a Pawn Shop

Buying Designer Watches from a Pawn Shop

Designer and luxury watches make a bold statement; to many people, they signify wealth and taste. While lots of people are willing to shell out top dollar a designer watch such as Rolex or Tag Heuer, that doesn’t need to be the case. Your local, trusted pawn shop, like Central Mega Pawn, is a great place to look for a brand-name luxury timepiece without the enormous price tag. Pawn shops like us put luxury within reach.

We regularly have a healthy stock of such top brand watches as:

When it comes to buying top brand luxury watches, your purchase should be considered an investment. As such, you should do your due diligence and make sure that you are getting a genuine article.

How to spot fake watches

Regardless of your familiarity with watches and luxury brands, you should always make sure you’re getting exactly what you’re paying for. Fake luxury watches are a big, potentially dangerous business. Replicas are getting closer and closer to the real items, so spotting them is becoming more difficult. Some fakes are so well done that they can fool experts. However, here are some ways to protect yourself.

Who is selling it, and where?

A good indication that you are not dealing with genuine material is if it is being sold in an unusual location by someone who cannot answer simple questions about the watch. Or, if one or more extremely rare pieces are being sold in one place.

However, just because a watch is in a glass case and being sold by someone in a tie does not necessarily mean it is authentic. Unless you are buying from a dealer who is officially a representative of the brand, you can’t be one hundred percent sure of what you’ll get.

Another indicator that you are in the wrong place to find a luxury watch is that the seller has no idea what the timepiece is worth and is willing to offer a ridiculous price for it. Prices that are too good to be true usually mean that you will not wind up with a genuine watch. While our experts at Central Mega Pawn know the exact worth of every luxury watch in stock, we will work with you to find you a fair price.

Buy in person

Many people look for favorable prices online and depend entirely on photos of the watch to determine its authenticity. However, photos can easily give a false sense of security. This is why you should come in to visit us to pick out your next luxury watch. You will be able to thoroughly examine the timepiece from every angle and will catch every tiny flaw.

When you visit Central Mega Pawn for your next designer watch, here are some things we will welcome you to examine:

  • Material – the metals and materials of counterfeit watches will be slightly off-colored. When you examine our watches, you will see that our gold watches are hallmarked and that the colors of the precious metals are genuine and bold.
  • Weight – counterfeit watches are usually lighter than expected, because they are made with cheaper materials in an effort to save on manufacturing costs. Not only that, they feel rougher in the hand because they are fashioned without the care and expertise that go into genuine luxury watches, and are rarely, if ever, made by hand. All of our watches at Central Mega Pawn will feel genuine in your hand and on your wrist.
  • Type faces and engravings – We will welcome you to examine the typefaces and engravings on our watches when you come in. Genuine luxury watches do not have mistakes, rough engravings, or inconsistencies; counterfeit watches, on the other hand, will often have spelling errors on the faces, have mispositioned letters or numbers with rough and uneven engraving, or even have loose hands.
  • Movement – the most important thing we will encourage you to examine is the movement on your new luxury watch. Even the best counterfeiters will have trouble matching the quality of the movement on genuine watches.
  • Sound – We will welcome you to examine the sound of your watch’s movement. Most luxury watches operate almost silently thanks to their immaculate movement system; if you happen across a watch being branded as “luxury”, but you can hear it ticking without holding it close to your ear, keep looking.

In the case of smartwatches, like Apple Watches, its responsiveness should be an indicator of its authenticity. If it takes longer than expected to wake up, or to respond to a prompt, there is a good chance that you should pass on it.

Why you should buy your next luxury watch from Central Mega Pawn

At every step of our buying process, our professionals at Central Mega Pawn have done everything they can to ensure that we only buy and sell genuine items, including insisting on paperwork and original packaging whenever possible. In this way, Central Mega Pawn has removed one big worry from looking for your next luxury watch.

Unlike jewelry stores, online retailers, and the like, we are willing and able to negotiate with you on the price. Come informed and willing to haggle, and you could walk away with the luxury or smart watch of your dreams for a fraction of what you would have spent elsewhere.

Also, you will be able to find unique watches at Central Mega Pawn that you simply will not find anywhere else. This is becuse we are a member of our community and are as unique as our neighbors. Regardless if you are in the market for a one-of-a-kind watch from a world-renowned brand, or for the latest smart watch, we have what you are looking for. Visit us today to see how we can help you find your next (or first) designer watch!