How Much Do Pawn Shops Pay for Silver?

How Much Do Pawn Shops Pay for Silver?

If you’ve got loose silver, silver jewelry, watches, or other authentic silver items lying around, you might be wondering if you can turn them into quick, safe and convenient cash by pawning or selling them at your local pawn shop. Luckily, silver is always in demand. However, how much you can expect your pawnshop to pay for your silver is subject to many factors. Keep reading to find out what affects the amount of money you can expect, why silver is always in demand, and how to get the most for your silver at your local pawn shop, regardless of if you are selling or pawning.

Two main factors that affect the price of silver

Although silver is undeniably valuable, the amount of money you can expect your local pawn shop to pay for your silver can change wildly. The following factors can affect how much you can expect when you pawn or sell your silver or silver items:

The Open Market – all buyers of silver, from pawn shops to fancy boutiques, use the current market value for silver. Market value consistently fluctuates and is affected by current events, the national and global economy, and supply and demand. To check the market value of silver per ounce, you can visit sites that track the prices of precious metals to get an idea of the current value and see if the value has gone up or down in recent weeks.

Purity and Weight – while the purity of another popular precious metal, gold, is measured in karats, the purity of silver is expressed as a percentage. This means that the higher percentage of pure silver in your item, the greater the weight, and the more you can expect for your items.

How to determine the purity of your silver

For most people, the easiest and most obvious way to determine their silver purity is to look for markings, particularly on jewelry items. Sometimes, these markings may be printed extremely small, so you might need a magnifying glass. Markings usually measure the percentage of silver in the metal mixture of the particular item. For example, a marking that states “Sterling .975” means that the thing is 97.5% silver.

Some people may choose to opt to buy equipment like electronic testers or investing in density tests. Still, it is usually easier and more economical to take it to your local pawnshop. They will have the tools and equipment to find out for sure the purity of your silver. At Central Mega Pawn, we employ an in-house jeweler, one of only a handful of pawnshops nationwide to do so. They will be happy to use their tools, expertise, and experience to tell you what you have.

Why silver is always in demand

Despite the many things that may affect the price of silver, it is almost always in demand. This is because it is considered a “precious metal,” which means that it is inherently rare. Throughout history, silver has been used for a multitude of purposes, such as:

  • Electronics – Silver is an excellent electrical conductor. Also, it is durable and can last for many cycles, which means that nearly all modern electronics have a silver component of some kind. From kid’s toys to microwaves, silver is a vital part of electronic items.
  • Jewelry and decoration – Since ancient times, silver has been used for jewelry, and is still a popular metal for all kinds of jewelry today. Silver is durable, reflective, and malleable, allowing for customization. Although silver may tarnish after wear, it can be polished and cleaned, looking like new all over again for many years to come.
  • Photography – The traditional practice of developing photographs with chemicals depended heavily on the use of silver. Although digital photography has lessened the demand for silver for these purposes, artists and photographers still use silver to develop images.
  • Medical uses – Silver has powerful microbial properties and is used in bandages, creams, and even eye drops. It can help prevent infection in open wounds and can be used to sanitize medical devices that are susceptible to bacterial infection, such as respirators.
  • Currency – Silver has been used for coins and bullion for centuries and still continues today. Silver coins are popular with collectors, and mints worldwide still use silver in their coins today.

How to get the most for your silver at your local pawnshop

Gather as many pieces as you can – if your silver item has certificates of purity, original packaging, or any other accompanying material, bring it with you. This will help your pawnbroker make the best deal possible.

Do your homework – teach yourself some of the basics of how precious metals are appraised and weighed, and remember that the purer the metals, the more valuable they are.

Clean your jewelry – do your best to clean your silver safely. Avoid harsh chemicals or abrasive materials. The cleaner it is, the easier it is for your pawnbroker to appraise the item.

Have realistic expectations – once you have an idea of what you might expect, be prepared to get an offer of a fraction of the value. Your local pawnbroker must make a profit on every item in their shop, so they cannot offer you an even exchange against the actual value of your silver.

Be prepared to negotiate – your pawnbroker will be open to realistic negotiations. The more homework you do, the more knowledgeable you will be. Don’t be afraid to walk away if the offer doesn’t come close to your standards. Unlike many other items that pass through the pawnshop, your jewelry will retain its value, and you will be able to come back another time or visit another shop.

Lastly: get your cash! – at Central Mega Pawn, we get you cash in hand in minutes.

If you live in or around the Inland Empire in Southern California, Central Mega Pawn should be your one-stop shop when you need to sell or pawn your silver. Contact us today to see how we can help you!

Do Pawn Shops Buy Loose Gemstones?

Do Pawn Shops Buy Loose Gemstones?

The answer is an emphatic “yes!” Pawnshops are always interested in buying gemstones. If you have loose gemstones on hand, you may not know what to do with them. Instead of letting them gather dust or go unused in a drawer somewhere, turn them into quick cash at your local pawn shop, such as Central Mega Pawn!

Your options when it comes to selling gemstones

When it comes to selling gemstones, you’ll have lots of options. Thankfully, gemstones are almost always a seller’s market. This means that you can contact lots of places and choose the one that’s best for you. Popular places to sell loose gemstones are:

  • Auction websites – sites like eBay and eBid are popular, but because buyers rely on sellers to accurately depict and describe the gemstones themselves, they will generally pay little.
  • Specialty websites – specialty websites can generally offer more than auction sites because experts verify the items.
  • Person-to-person sales apps – apps like LetGo allow you to advertise your gemstones and have buyers contact you.
  • Community board sites – sites like Craigslist or Facebook Marketplace can be an option, but sellers must use caution when meeting up with buyers, especially for high-value items like gemstones.

Why a pawn shop is your best bet

A pawn shop might not seem like the obvious solution to get the most money for your gemstones, but it is very often the right choice. Here are just a few reasons why your local pawnshop should be your only stop when you want to sell your loose gemstones:

  • No shipping, handling, or insurance costs – when you sell gemstones online, you will often have to pay for the shipping, handling, and insurance yourself.
  • No picky buyers – selling to a pawnshop means not having to deal with people who want to pay as little as possible. Your pawnbroker understands the value of your gemstones and will work to find a fair price. Another danger of selling online is that you risk a buyer filing a fraudulent complaint, which can unfairly harm your reputation or even cost you money.
  • No waiting – when you sell to a pawn shop, you get your cash in hand safely in minutes! No waiting for an online payment to come through or risking your safety by handling a cash transaction in public with a stranger.

Pawnshops want gemstones of all kinds

When you hear the word “gemstones,” you might think mostly of diamonds. However, there are many different beautiful and valuable gemstones out there.

While gemstones almost always have value, sometimes, that value skyrockets when they become famous. For example, blue sapphires are enjoying a moment of popularity, thanks to the famous engagement ring of Duchess of Cambridge, Kate Middleton.

Gemstones are among the handful of items that your local pawnshop will always be interested in. Unlike some other items whose value tends to go down year after year, such as electronics, there is always value to be found in gemstones. This is because the stones can be used for various things, are durable, and are traded all over the world.

Some basics of selling gemstones at your local pawnshop

Although most gemstones will have some value, not all gems are created equal. So, before you sell your gemstones to your local pawnshop, keep the following things in mind:

  • There are four main types of precious stones: Diamond, Ruby, Blue Sapphire, and Emerald. These are the most valuable types of gemstones and will always command a high price.
  • Any other stone aside from the main for types is considered semi-precious. While these can still have value, they will not get as high a price as a precious stone.
  • Size matters. Tiny stones are not as valuable to your local pawnbroker as larger stones.

How to get the most money for your gemstones at your local pawnshop

Regardless of the type of gemstones you are selling, here are some tips to help you get the most for your items:

  • Bring your paperwork – if you have certificates of authenticity, verification of carat or purity, or even receipts, bring them with you. Counterfeit or impure gemstones are a concern for any buyer of gems, so the more you can back up the value of your gemstones, the more leverage you will have when it comes time to negotiate a price.
  • Have them appraised by a professional (optional) – if you do not have paperwork but want the security of knowing exactly what value you have in your gemstones, you can have them appraised. However, be wary of going to a retail jeweler for this service. It pains us to say so, but there are lots of buyers out there who will not hesitate to take advantage of vulnerable sellers. Instead, contact the American Society of Appraisers, who can help you find a trustworthy appraiser in your area.
  • Do your homework – as any buyer would, your pawnbroker will have lots of questions about your gemstones. Help them help you by being prepared to answer things like: where did you get your gems? Have they been treated? Can you verify their authenticity? (this is where your paperwork will really come in handy!)
  • Let your pawnbroker help – if you have any doubt about the validity of your gemstones, your pawnbroker can help. Your pawnbroker will appreciate your honesty and do what they can to help you figure out if your gems are real.
  • Do not be afraid to negotiate – if you have done your homework, have determined that your gemstones are authentic, and have the paperwork go back it up, be prepared to negotiate with your pawnbroker. If you have realistic expectations, your pawnbroker will be able to work with you to reach a price that works for both sides.

As you can see, pawnshops all over the country will buy loose gemstones. When you are ready to sell your loose gemstones, contact your local pawnshop. If you live in Ontario, California, or anywhere in the Inland Empire, see how we can help you today!