Looking for a Used Vehicle? Check Out Your Local Pawn Shop

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When you need to buy a used vehicle, you might have a list of places to look first. You could go to a used car outlet or dealership in hopes of finding a sale. Or you might browse your local newspaper listings to see if any of your neighbors are giving up their family jalopy.

But before you stop by either location, visit your nearest pawn shop.

Pawn shops have the intimacy of a private seller and the reliability of a dealership. When you come to a pawn shop for your next vehicle, you can often find a variety of cars, trucks, motorcycles, and recreational vehicles to fit your needs.

Still hesitant to make a purchase? Here are a few more benefits to car shopping from a pawn shop.

1. You Can Use Personal Items to Cushion the Purchase

Used cars and trucks can be expensive, especially if the vehicle is only a few years old or has extra features installed. Even though you won’t have to pay retail price, you might not have the immediate funds to afford a used car.

If you were to buy a used car from a dealership, the company may help you finance your vehicle. If you were to buy from a private seller, you could potentially finance through your bank. In either case, you’d need good credit to complete the purchase.

However, at a pawn shop, you can cash in your personal items to help buy your vehicle. Any electronics, jewelry, home improvement tools, and musical instruments could give you the extra cash needed to buy your car. And if you still don’t have enough, many pawn shops allow you to take out a collateral loan. No credit necessary.

2. You Can Skip the Pressure From the Sales Team

Many sales teams depend on commissions to fill in the gaps in their income. As a result, the staff at some used car dealerships will try to make as many sales as they can, as fast as they can. To encourage you to buy, sales professionals may use pressuring tactics such as “another buyer wants this car” or “we’re already losing money on this deal.”

In contrast, pawn shop employees have a consistent wage, and good store managers understand that some items take longer to sell than others.

When you step into a pawn shop, you won’t have to worry about aggressive sales tactics or judgment based on your credit history. Instead, you can enjoy assistance from a helpful, knowledgeable team willing to work with your needs and budget.

3. You Can Learn More About Your Vehicle’s History

Large used car dealerships often buy and sell hundreds, or even thousands, of cars per year. Consequently, they might not have time to understand the ins and outs of each vehicle. When you buy from a dealer, you may ask for a CARFAX or AutoCheck report to pull up a few details on your vehicle, but you might not fully understand your vehicle’s condition or quirks.

A private seller may be able to give you a history of his or her vehicle if the seller bought it directly from the lot. But if he or she bought the car from another friend or family member, or if the seller neglected to document any repairs, you might not receive any more information from a private seller than a dealership.

At a pawn shop, however, owners recognize that their reputation depends on providing quality products at competitive prices. When managers buy a used vehicle, they have to gauge that vehicle’s price based on the car’s history, usage, condition, and current market value. If they don’t have all the details, they’ll ultimately lose money on their investment and lose future customers. Many pawn shop owners will fully inspect a vehicle before agreeing to the purchase.

Consequently, when you buy a car from a pawn owner, you can feel confident that the vehicle will be in good shape for the price. And if you have any questions about the car, you can easily ask for more information.

Check Out Your Local Pawn Shop for Your Next Vehicle

Pawn shops present countless opportunities to find great deals on tools, electronics, and antiques-why not look there for your next car or camper as well? Stop by your pawn shop to see what it has to offer. 

Pawning vs. Selling: Which Is for Me?

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You’ve seen the television shows. A guy walks into a pawn shop with a ring he inherited from his grandmother. A pawnbroker takes the ring in exchange for a handful of cash. End scene.

So, did the guy sell or pawn his ring, and what’s the difference? If you’re unfamiliar with the pawn shop industry, you may be confused by the services a pawnbroker offers. This blog will explain what it means to pawn an item for a loan and sell an item for cash.

What Is Pawning?

When you pawn an item, you’re essentially taking out a collateral loan. You use an item of value as collateral to borrow money. When you repay the money-plus interest and fees-you get the item back.

At a pawn shop, you initiate a collateral loan by meeting with a pawnbroker to appraise your item. The pawnbroker will offer you a loan amount based on a percentage of your item’s estimated value.

If you accept the loan, you “lend” your item at the shop in exchange for cash and a pawn ticket. You’ll use the pawn ticket to reclaim your item, following repayment. In the event you can’t repay the loan, you permanently surrender your item. The pawnbroker sells the item to recoup the cost of the loan.

What Is Selling?

Selling an item is exactly what it sounds like: exchanging an item in return for money. The process is similar to pawning an item. You’ll bring your belongings to the pawn shop for appraisal. A pawnbroker will offer you an amount of money based on the estimated value of your items. If you accept the offer, you exchange your items for the agreed-upon price, and the transaction is complete.

The difference between pawning and selling is that when you sell an item, you no longer have claim to it. Items become property of the pawn shop once you accept the money. The only way you can retrieve your items is by repurchasing them from the pawn shop-likely at a higher price.

On the other hand, you don’t have to repay the money. You are not accountable to the pawnbroker once you surrender your items.

Which Option Is Better?

Having trouble trying to decide which option is for you? Before you pawn or sell any of your belongings, ask yourself these two questions:

  1. Will I want this item back?
  2. How much money do I need?

Selling is a good option for unwanted items you can easily live without. Selling provides the opportunity to make some fast cash without obligation. In this one-time venture, you have no further responsibility to the pawnbroker.

But, what if your item has sentimental value? Is it a family heirloom? Is there any chance you’ll want or need it back in the future? If so, pawn it. You’ll get the cash you need while maintaining ownership of your item.

Additionally, if you’re seeking maximum cash, you usually receive a larger amount when you pawn an item. Pawning presents less of a risk to brokers. Unless you don’t repay your loan, a broker doesn’t have to worry about resale value.

You can even re-use high-value items-like jewelry or precious metals-as collateral for subsequent loans.
Since these items tend to appreciate over time, you may even get a higher amount in the future.

However, there may be some high-value items you can’t re-pawn. Because technology is rapidly updating, electronics tend to depreciate in value. Therefore, gaming consoles and televisions may be better suited for sale.

Since pawn shops accept different items and offer different incentives, it’s okay to shop around. While one broker may offer you $50 for that rare coin, a broker up the street may offer $75. Whether you’re pawning or selling an item, check with each pawn shop to confirm eligible items, loan rates, and applicable fees.

5 Ways to Care for Your Jewelry

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Fine jewelry is designed to last for generations. However, jewelry owners must properly care for their jewelry to ensure lasting quality. When you practice proper care for your jewels, you will increase your chances of enjoying their beauty and elegance for many years.

Here are a few things you can do to care for your jewelry.

1. Remove Your Jewelry Before Participating in Hands-on Activities

Jewelry owners should avoid wearing fine jewelry during hands-on activities, such as gardening, cleaning, or playing sports. These activities could dislodge a precious gem or cause metals to wear down. Additionally, you should remove jewelry before playing contact sports to avoid injuring yourself or others. Jewelry owners should also refrain from wearing their jewelry to bed.

2. Avoid Exposing Your Jewelry to Extreme Light and Heat

Similar to how the sun can damage a person’s skin, the sun can also damage metals and gemstones. Sunlight often causes gemstone color to fade. Gemstones that are particularly at risk for sun damage include kunzite, amethyst, and topaz.

If your jewelry has ivory pearls, you should also avoid extreme light as the impact could bleach the delicate material. On the other hand, some materials could darken from extreme exposure to light, such as amber gems.

Exposure to sudden temperature changes or extreme heat may also fracture some gemstones. Extreme heat removes the moisture that most gems need to keep their natural beauty. For instance, pearls may dry out, discolor, or crack when exposed to extreme heat. When opals lose moisture, they typically turn brown or white, lose play-of-color, or develop small cracks.

3. Keep Your Jewelry Away From Any Chemicals

Never wear your fine jewelry when handling cleaning products or chemicals. Exposure to certain chemicals may discolor the precious metals such as platinum, silver, or gold. Avoid exposing your jewelry to cleaning products that contain ammonia. Typically, this chemical is too harsh on precious metals and gems.

Even common beauty products contain chemicals that could harm your jewelry, such as lotion, perfume, makeup, or hairspray. Do your best to apply any beauty products before putting on your fine jewelry.

You should also try to remove jewelry before going into swimming pools with chlorine. Chlorine may discolor the gems or cause structural damage to the metals in your jewelry.

4. Store Your Jewelry in a Safe Location

Many jewelry owners are not careful about where they store their jewelry. For example, if you store your jewelry in a drawer, you risk losing gems or scratching the metal.

Instead, store your jewelry away from other accessories in a tarnish-resistant pouch or Mylar plastic bag. Never use trash bags made of polyvinyl to store jewelry. Polyvinyl liners typically contain rubber or sulfur compounds that tarnish sterling silver. You should also avoid storing jewelry in direct sunlight and in the bathroom.  

A better alternative is to store jewelry in the box or pouch that you received when you first purchased the piece. Additionally, jewelry boxes that have separated compartments are also a good place to store fine jewelry. If possible, hang bracelets and necklaces to prevent them from tangling with other accessories.

If you plan to travel, pack your jewelry in a container separate from other luggage. Ideally, you should pack your jewelry in a padded container to prevent scratches during travel.

5. Take Your Jewelry In for Regular Checkups and Cleanings

As a rule of thumb, you should visit your jeweler for a checkup once every year. At this checkup, jewelers can repair any damage and prevent any potential damage to your jewelry. You should also try to get your jewelry cleaned at least twice a year.

Use these tips to prevent damages to your fine jewelry. If you exercise proper care and maintenance, you can keep your jewelry in excellent condition for years to come. For more tips on caring for your jewelry, talk to a jeweler at your local pawn shop.

Factors That Determine a Gemstone’s Worth

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If you own a piece of jewelry that contains a colored gemstone in it, you likely wonder how much the stone itself is worth. You may even wonder what factors jewelers, gemologists, and pawn shop dealers use to determine a stone’s value.

Whether you inherited an heirloom ruby ring from your great-grandmother or you purchased a new pair of sapphire earrings, the factors that determine the gem’s value remain the same. Below, we discuss some of those factors so you understand what affects your stone’s price and worth.

The Four C’s

You’re likely familiar with the four c’s that gemstones display: cut, clarity, color, and carat weight. Let’s take a closer look at these four features.


When miners excavate gemstones, the stones themselves appear rough and coarse. They aren’t perfectly round or square—that shape comes from cutters who trim and cut the raw stone into a specific shape.

The way the stone is cut greatly affects its value. If it isn’t cut properly, the stone looks imperfect and less desirable, and the stone’s value drops as a result.


Anyone who wants to purchase a precious or semi-precious gemstone looks for a stone that is free of blemishes. Any imperfections make the stone more difficult to cut, and they also make the stone less desirable. After all, many people purchase gemstones for their purity and brilliance.

When you have an expert examine your gemstone, he or she will look for imperfections that impede clarity. For example, if a blemish causes the stone to look murky in one area, the stone won’t be worth as much on the market.


Gemstones reflect light within them to produce an array of colors. Sometimes, mineral deposits or other items affect the stone’s overall color. While ideal diamonds should be colorless, colored stones should display rich, deep colors to maintain intrinsic value. So the more intense the color of the stone, the higher its value.

Carat Weight

As with most things in life, the bigger a stone is, the more money it’s worth. But the stone’s weight alone doesn’t determine its value. Experts look for large stones that have rich colors, are cut precisely and cleanly, and have optimum clarity. These types of stones are rare, so a one-carat ruby that displays these features is worth significantly more than other gemstones.

The Stone’s Enhancements

When a stone is processed and treated, it is cut and polished to improve its overall look. But the enhancements refer to any other treatments used to further improve the stone’s look and value.

For example, blue topaz stones don’t exist in nature. Gem experts allow the stone to undergo high-tech irradiation to give it the iconic crystal-blue hue. This process is an enhancement used to further improve the stone’s appearance.

The type of additional treatment can greatly affect the stone’s value. Typically, however, enhanced stones are worth less than those that only underwent cutting and polishing.

The Stone’s Class

Precious stones include rubies, diamonds, emeralds, and sapphires. Semi-precious stones include every other type of gemstone on the market. While gem experts don’t rely on preciousness to determine a stone’s value, they do classify stones into two categories: diamonds and colored stones.

The stone’s class plays a small role in determining its value. Ultimately, gemologists look to a stone’s overall quality to discover its worth.

The Stone’s Supply and Demand

Finally, the market supply and demand greatly affect how much a stone is worth. The rarer a stone is and the more people want it, the higher its value. For example, tanzanite is becoming rarer each year. Since people still covet the stone, its worth has increased significantly to accommodate the diminishing supply.


As you consider your gemstone’s value, keep the above factors in mind. If you decide that you want to sell your old, unworn jewelry, visit your local pawn shop. The staff there can inspect the gemstones in each piece and determine its value.

Additionally, these dealers will often give you better upfront pricing on your valuable items. Stop by your local pawn shop and discover just how much that old ring or necklace is worth.

6 Tips to Liquidate an Estate

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Whether you’ve lost a parent, grandparent, or parent-in-law, you’re likely facing the task of liquidating their estate. It’s no small thing to sort, organize, distribute and dispose of a lifetime’s worth of possessions.

This period of time tends to be stressful and fraught with emotion, which could lead you to make some rash decisions that you could regret later on. For this reason, we have a list of helpful tips that can help you get you through this difficult and demanding time.

Contrary to popular belief, there are easy and financially smart ways to liquidate your loved one’s estate. Use the six tips below to help you liquidate countless items in a timely manner while still making wise decisions for everyone involved.

1. Create a Sorting Strategy

You likely want to take your time sorting through each room and drawer. Unfortunately, you might not have the luxury of basking in the memories associated with each item. If you’re working towards a deadline, you’re going to need a strategy. The strategy that gets things done might be different for every person.

For some, making a yes/no/maybe pile helps, but this can add more time to your sorting process. If time is short, stick with the philosophy that you can only touch something once. No matter where it is in the house, once you’ve touched it, make the final decision.

Create a plan of what to do first-in other words, prioritize each task. Finding important financial documents is a good place to start. Keep an eye out for stock certificates, bank statements, deeds and titles, wills, trusts, and any life insurance policies.

2. Obtain Help

If you are the executor of the estate, you likely feel the need to make decisions about every object. Still, you can make the final call on items without doing everything yourself. Divide the physical labor between trusted family members so you don’t become unnecessarily exhausted.

Putting all of the hauling and heavy lifting on yourself doesn’t help anyone and likely prolongs your efforts.

3. Stay Vigilant

Even when you’re in a hurry, it pays to be meticulous. You never know if a diamond ring might be tucked away in a bureau drawer or how much cash lies in the pockets of that jacket you’re donating.

A thorough yet succinct sorting of items results in timely organization without regrets. Even if it takes hours of digging, you’ll be glad you took the time when you discover irreplaceable heirlooms and sentimental items.

4. Obtain Appraisals

Furniture, artwork, jewelry, and other antiques have the potential to add monetary value to your bottom line. However, you could likely lose money by not obtaining accredited appraisals.

Although a professional estate appraiser has the necessary credentials, he or she can prove to be a pricey option. On the other hand, your local pawn and loan shop can often provide the information you need at little to no cost. In addition, if you choose your local pawn shop, you’ll have a ready-made buyer for a wide variety of items.

5. Play Fair

The last thing you want on your hands when liquidating an estate is a family dispute. Before selling or donating anything, take the time to have direct descendants (such as siblings or children) create wish lists of items they would like to have. Do your best to distribute items evenly based on monetary or emotional value.

Don’t think about throwing out sentimental photos and memorabilia, either. There’s likely someone in the family willing to take these materials.

6. Sell Before You Donate

You can donate smaller items like clothing to charitable organizations, but resist donating larger items before you know their value. Take exercise equipment, computers, jewelry, vehicles, musical instruments, and books to a certified pawn and loan provider for appraisals. If you have items that no one will buy, feel free to donate them.

To make things easier on yourself during the estate liquidation process, call your local pawn and loan provider to see if they help with estate liquidations.

4 Things to Look for When You Buy a Used Violin

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A violin is a timeless instrument. If carefully maintained, it can last for generations and still produce a rich, beautiful sound. 

But if you are a beginning student, finding the perfect violin can seem overwhelming. You might not feel comfortable purchasing a professional instrument, and you probably don’t have the budget to invest thousands of dollars into a hobby you haven’t fully mastered.

Fortunately, you can often find great deals on used violins at your local pawn shop. The following tips can help you look for an instrument in good condition.

1. The Pegs Should Turn Smoothly

Few things are worse than having to tune your violin every few minutes. If the violin has loose, wobbly pegs that don’t stay put, you’ll have a much harder time keeping a consistent sound.

As you look for a violin, double-check that the pegs turn smoothly but stay in place when you’ve finished tuning. If you have limited options, choose a violin with stiff pegs over loose ones, as you can smooth stiff pegs with peg drops or paste.

Furthermore, make sure that the holes for the strings run through the pegs and that the holes sit consistently on all four pegs.

2. The Fingerboard Should Sit Straight

Your finger placement determines the notes that you play, and if you have a crooked fingerboard, you may pick up a few bad habits as you try to sound out your scales. Although a luthier can usually replace a crooked fingerboard, the repairs will cost you money, which will add to your violin’s total price tag.

Make sure the head sits straight on the neck and that the fingerboard, in turn, aligns evenly along the neck. The board should also sit slightly above and between the f-holes, and it should make a direct line to the fine tuning pegs.

3. The Bridge Should Align With the F-Holes

The bridge supports and lifts the strings, allowing them to vibrate fully. It also carries vibrations from the strings to the belly of the violin, so your violin resonates and produces a clear, full, and rich sound.

To produce the best sound, the bridge should stand perpendicular on the violin, with tension from the strings to hold it in place. The bridge should never lean in either direction, and its sides should align with the slashes in the f-holes. The higher part of the bridge should hold the G string, while the lower part of the bridge should support the E string.

If necessary, you can adjust the violin bridge placement on your own, though it does require some finesse and skill. As a general rule, you should avoid instruments with cracked bridges or broken feet, as the bridge will be more likely to collapse under the tension and damage the rest of the violin.

4. The Back Shouldn’t Have Cracks

Older violins will likely have some minor damage. The varnish may have worn away, and the sides may have a few small chips and scuffs. Usually tiny cracks on the top of the violin and near the seams won’t affect the sound or quality of your violin.

But if you note cracks running the length of the back, around the soundpost, or on the neck of the violin, you should exercise caution before you agree to the sale. These cracks require a great deal of repairs, and even if you take your violin to a professional luthier for fixes, the cracks will likely reappear over time.

Enjoy Your Violin

If you carefully inspect violins for these problems and issues, you should have no problem sorting the duds from the treasures.

But if you have any doubts about your future instrument, ask the pawn shop owner if you can play a few notes before you buy. You don’t have to have a sonata memorized or play one of Beethoven’s concertos; simply pull the bow across the strings to see if you like the sound and the tone. Your ear will let you know when you’ve found the right one.

Once you’ve found it, enjoy learning to play your beautiful instrument. 

3 Tips When Buying a Necklace for Your Valentine

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When you want to impress your wife or girlfriend for Valentine’s Day, jewelry is always a good option. However, choosing which necklace to buy can be intimidating and discouraging.

Jewelry comes in various sizes and shapes. You have to consider her personal taste and the message you may be sending. How do you narrow down the best fit for your loved one?

Use these three suggestions to help you find the perfect Valentine’s Day gift.

1. Consider Her Facial Features

A necklace may look good on one woman and terrible on another, all due to their body proportions. Before you head to the cash register, take into account your woman’s facial features. These proportions will determine what style of necklace will look good on her.

Here are some features you should consider:

  • Face: Look for whether your woman has a round, oval, heart-shaped, or rectangle face outline. Many jewelry shops have charts graphing what types of face shapes work with what necklaces. Use the chart to determine which length and strand will accentuate her features.
  • Neck: Next, determine if her neck is long or short. Most women want long necks. If your significant other has a short neck, choose a necklace that helps her neck look longer. For women who already have long necks, you can choose a necklace that highlights this feature.

Use her body type to emphasize her best features. Wearing a necklace that highlights these features will help her feel even more beautiful.

2. Consider the Occasion

Most men wouldn’t wear a suit and tie to a baseball game. The same rule applies to women when wearing jewelry.

Here are some length suggestions to help you buy for your specific occasion:

  • 12-13 inches: Shorter necklaces work better for formal occasions.
  • 14-16 inches: A choker necklace works great for many occasions. This length is the most versatile and classic option.
  • 17-19 inches: One of the more popular lengths is the princess necklace. This length usually has a pendant on the end.
  • 20-24 inches: Choose this length for a good go-to necklace for formal and casual occasions.
  • 28-34 inches: These necklaces work great for outfits with high necklines.
  • 45+ inches: Long rope necklaces are typically considered casual.

If you’re having trouble deciding on a good length, talk to the sales consultant. He or she may have additional suggestions that can help you choose.

3. Consider Her Personal Taste

Determining your significant other’s style preferences is easier said than done. However, you may catch her dropping hints as Valentine’s Day gets closer. Or you may need to subtly ask what kind of jewelry she likes. If all else fails, take a quick stroll through the jewelry store and have her point out some pieces that stand out to her.

Another way to determine her personal taste is to watch what she wears. See what jewelry she chooses for work, parties, or date nights. Take into account the colors and designs. The point isn’t to buy her a necklace exactly the same as one she already has, but to catch on to any patterns.

Perhaps you see that she wears a lot of silver or gold jewelry. Does she tend to wear more diamonds? Or does she show a preference toward casual jewelry?

If you can’t find a pattern and you still have no idea what to get her, consider asking for advice. Keep in mind that girls usually talk with one another. You do take the risk that they don’t keep your secret. However, if you trust them, feel free to ask her best friend or sister for their input.

In the end, have fun and don’t stress too much about which necklace to choose. Trying your best always shows you care.

Ready to Invest in a Watch? Look for These 4 Brands

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In today’s digital world, almost anyone and everyone can check the time via their phone or tablet. Consequently, you might assume that unless your watch has a few apps or can alert you to your latest texts, then your timepiece must be outdated and worthless.

But despite the rise in technology, luxury watches still retain a great deal of their value. Like wine, art, or diamonds, some watch brands deserve a spot in your investment portfolio. The following brands, in particular, can bring in thousands of dollars (and occasionally millions) when properly maintained.

1. Rolex

Even if you’ve never shown much interest in watches until now, you’ve likely heard of a Rolex. Rolex, by default, is one of the best-known watch brands, and many buyers will pay extra for a brand they are familiar with.

Rolex relies on 904L steel, which is gorgeous but difficult to machine. Additionally, Rolex has its own in-house foundry to make all the gold and platinum components for their watches. And they test each batch of diamonds and precious stones before hand-setting the gems. When you purchase a Rolex, you can rest assured that you purchase quality, both inside and out.

However, keep in mind that some models appreciate more than others. In general, the sport watch models, such as the GMT, the Submariner, and the Daytona, do the best over time. To break even on your investment, look for vintage models (older than 30 years).

2. Patek Philippe

For watch enthusiasts, Patek Philippe has almost the same popularity as the Rolex. These high-end Swiss watches have an understated elegance and craftsmanship that make them one of the most-sought brands in the industry.

Although their manufacturing process remains a closely guarded secret, the most basic Patek Philippe watches take as long as nine months to complete from start to finish due to their intricate detailing. And the more complicated designs can take as long as two years to produce. Due to limited production, Patek Philippe watches have a scarcity that makes them immensely valuable straight from retail.

Like Rolex, not every Patek Philippe watch will automatically increase in value. So look for models such as the Patek Philippe Calatrava, Nautilus, and Aquanaut.

3. Omega

Omega has an impressive history of branding. It journeyed to the moon on Buzz Aldrin’s wrist, and it was
James Bond’s watch of choice in Casino Royale. A few other noteworthy individuals have donned Omega watches, including Elvis Presley, John F. Kennedy, and George Clooney. When you invest in an Omega watch, you can count on a few heads turning in your direction.

Unlike Rolex and Patek Philippe, Omega relies heavily on its branding and marketing campaign rather than its watch design to attract attention. But though their watches can’t compete for complexity, their Speedmaster Professional model did survive testing from the United States Space Agency, making it a technological success and a popular investment piece.

If you’d like to invest in Omega’s other high-end models, take a look at the Omega SA, Constellation, and
De Ville. All of these luxury watches have seen impressive growth in their recent market sales.

4. Breitling

Breitling Swiss-made watches have been a popular investment choice since 1884. Many of their models come especially constructed for pilots, athletes, and artists, and they’ve long been a status symbol for prestige and performance. Celebrities such as Harrison Ford, John Travolta, Tom Cruise, and Leonardo DiCaprio have worn Breitling watches to famous events.

Breitling combines its centuries-old techniques with the latest advancements in manufacturing and production. And like Patek Philippe, Breitling has several rare models that make for the perfect addition to any collection. For example, Breitling only made 50 of the Bentley Flying B J28363, and it currently retails for over $255,500.

Want to purchase something a little more reasonable? Look for the Breitling Navitimer, Superocean Chronograph, and the Barnato Chronograph.

Don’t Miss Your Next Opportunity

The above brands all make for a worthy investment, so if you can find them, you should hold onto them for as long as possible. Keep a look out for these brands in the most unlikely places, from auction sites to pawn shops. You never know when a timeless timepiece will show up.

Love Antique Books? How to Know If You’ve Found a Literary Treasure

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Do you consider yourself a book enthusiast? Do you love to stroke the binding, smell the pages, feel the paper with your fingers, and thumb through the chapters to look at the typeface? Maybe you think of books as your old friends, and you revisit them time and time again to relive past adventures. Perhaps, for you, a book’s front cover functions as a portal that allows you to explore other worlds.

If you feel this way about books, it shouldn’t surprise you that you have graduated from cheap paperback editions to deluxe hardcover ones. Nor should it come as a surprise that you’ve gone beyond the traditional hardcover to antique editions and first printings. Antique books often have much lovelier covers, richer smells, and more history.

But how do you know you’ve found a good antique edition when you visit pawn shops, thrift stores, or antique malls? Have a look at the tips below. They can point you in the right direction so you only collect the very best volumes in your personal library.

1. Consider the Title and Author

As you might expect, you’ll pay more for an antique book from a well-known (even famous) author than a
writer who never achieved popularity. For example, anything by Charles Dickens will have more worth than stories written by Arthur Hume Plunkett-after all, most people have never heard of Arthur Hume Plunkett. His stories have not had the impact on the modern zeitgeist that Dickens’ have.

Additionally, more popular stores from a particular author may more value than others. Most works by
Dickens have enough popularity that Bleak House would go for a similar price as A Christmas Carol, depending on the edition, the publisher, and the publication date.

However, consider authors like Jane Austen or Geoffrey Chaucer. Both writers created many beautiful works, but Pride and Prejudice and The Canterbury Tales will often have more value than Emma or The Book of the Duchess.

2. Have a Look at the Publication Details

Once you’ve found a title and author that have caught your eye, take the book out and open it to the publication details. Keep in mind that some older books may lack these details, so you’ll have to do research online to find the information. Specifically, look at the publication date. The older a book is, the higher its value in many cases.

3. Consider the Décor on the Cover and Pages

A book with a heavy, solid cover with pictures, gold leaf, etching, and other décor will normally have more worth than a plainer edition. Check the book’s pages as well-if you see gold gilding on the outside of the pages, or if you notice full color illustrations inside the book, then you have stumbled across something truly special.

4. Evaluate the Book’s Condition

Just as you would pay more for a car in good condition, an antique book in good condition has a higher value as well. Gently check the spine’s strength. If it feels wobbly or sounds crackly, it has weakened. You may also notice missing pages, fraying covers, and other signs of wear and tear.

Keep in mind that yellowed pages do not necessarily affect the book’s condition, as the mixture used to make paper in older books has a different chemical makeup that simply yellows with time. The pages will not decompose if cared for properly.

5. Research the Number of Copies Printed

Even if you find an old, beautiful edition, it may have less value than a newer, less decorative edition simply because more copies of the older one exist. The more copies of a vintage book you can find, the less intrinsic value they have.

6. Use Online Tools to Find the Book’s Net Worth

Rare editions of popular titles from popular authors in good condition can cost hundreds or thousands of dollars. Others may have no more value than 20 dollars. Use the clues above to start your research on old books that interest you. But if you want to know a book’s value for sure, use online appraisal tools. You can quickly consult several appraisal websites with a search on Google.


The next pawn shop, antique store, or neighborhood yard sale could yield the special book you’ve dreamed of finding. Ensure you purchase your literary treasures for a fair price and guarantee that you fill your library with great antique books by using the tips above. 

4 Reasons to Sell Your Item at a Pawn Shop Instead of on Craigslist

Written by sol-jewel on . Posted in Uncategorized

In today’s digital world, more and more people are selling their items online through websites like
Craigslist. Through Craiglist, you can sell your items to local buyers without worrying about shipping.

Many people believe Craigslist is the best way to make money from their items. Actually, there’s another more trustworthy way to sell your valuables locally: through pawn shops. Pawn shops continue to offer several key benefits that online options lack.

Here are four reasons why you should take your items to a pawn shop.

1. You Maximize Your Payment With the Pawn Broker’s Experience

When you use Craigslist, you have to choose your own selling price. Without experience, it’s often difficult to set the right price.

You may choose a price that’s much lower than what the item is actually worth, causing you to miss out on money you could have earned. Or you may choose a price no one is willing to pay. You’ll have to continually adjust the price until you eventually sell your item for much lower than you would like.

When you sell to a pawn broker, you’ll have the broker’s experience and expertise behind you. A pawn broker has bought and sold many different items. He or she has the resources and experience to find out exactly what your item is worth. This is especially true with antiques like jewelry, instruments, and precious metals.

If you sell to a pawn broker, he or she can discuss your item’s worth with you and offer you the fairest price.

2. You Can Keep Your Valuable With a Loan

Maybe you need money right away, but you really don’t want to part with your grandfather’s wrist watch. When you sell it on Craigslist, you’ll never see it again. But when you sell at a pawn shop, you have the option of getting the money and keeping your item. You do this by getting a loan.

If you choose to loan your item, the pawn broker loans you money and gives you a timeframe to pay it back. Once you earn the needed money, you can pay the pawn broker and retrieve your treasured valuable. If you don’t have the money in time, you can occasionally extend the loan.

3. You Develop a Relationship With the Pawn Broker

When you sell your items on Craigslist, you sell to random individuals you’ve never met. But when you sell with your local pawn broker, you have the opportunity of developing a rapport with him or her.  If you regularly sell at the same pawn shop, the pawn broker may offer you a higher price or loan on your items.

4. You Don’t Have to Deal With Customers

When you sell on Craigslist, you agree to meet with the buyer somewhere. Meeting can be inconvenient-you have to trust that someone you’ve never met will come on time and pay the price you charged. You also have to be wary of scammers; even if they show up to the location with the right sum of money, some people may try to pay you with canceled checks.

When you sell at a pawn shop, you don’t have to negotiate prices or meeting times with customers. In fact, you don’t have to deal with customers at all. You simply sell your item to the pawn broker and he or she takes care of the rest.


If you plan to sell a valuable item like a gold necklace or an antique violin, trusting the strangers on Craigslist isn’t your only option. Take the item to your local pawn shop. That way, you can find out its value from an experienced

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