Frequently Asked Questions
Answers to Frequently Asked Questions
- What is a Pawn Shop?
A pawnshop is a state licensed and regulated business that offers collateral loans from $10 to $100,000 to its customers. In addition to loans, a pawnshop will also purchase and sell items of value.
- What is a Pawn?
A pawn is a 30-day collateral loan agreement which can be renewed on a monthly basis by paying the monthly service charges.
Let's just say you borrow $100.00 on your jewelry. At the end of 30 days, you can come in and pay the service payment which extends the loan for another 30 days or you may come in and repay what we loaned you plus any applicable service charge and get your item back (redemption). If you choose not to make the service payment, or redeem your item by the end of 30 days, by law the loan is automatically extended by an additional 30 days. We do not charge any 'late fees', however the finance charge does accumulate if not paid. If no payment has been made within 90 days and the item is not redeemed, then the loan defaults and the collateral becomes the property of the pawnshop.
NOTE: The loan can be extended as many times as needed.
- What types of items can I pawn?
We will offer to pawn or purchase most jewelry, watches, diamonds, coins, newer electronics, musical instruments, quality tools, antiques and collectibles. We do specialize in the following: jewelry (gold, silver or platinum), loose diamonds, coins (gold, silver, or platinum), gold bars, silver bars, broken or scrap jewelry (gold, silver or platinum), scrap dental gold, gold and sterling flatware or hollowware, and WWII memorabilia. We will also take in newer laptop and tablet computers. We do specialize in the following: jewelry (gold, silver or platinum), loose diamonds, coins (gold, silver, or platinum), gold bars, silver bars, broken or scrap jewelry (gold, silver or platinum), scrap dental gold, gold and sterling flatware or hollowware, and WWII memorabilia. We will also take in newer laptop and tablet computers.
- Why would someone go to a pawnbroker to get a loan?
Most banks will not loan you small amounts of money. Even if you only need a loan of $10, we will loan you the cash you need. Pawn loans do not affect your credit. We offer a quick, convenient, and confidential way to borrow money. A short-term cash need can be met with no credit check.
Some advantages to pawning are:
- It is hassle free.
- Immediate cash payments.
- No credit check or reporting.
- You retain ownership of your item while it is in pawn.
- If the loan defaults, nothing is reported to any credit agency or sent to your house.
- How much should I expect for a loan on my item?
We guarantee that we will loan the most that we can on your item, however loan amounts vary according to the resale value of the item. Your loan amount will be determined according to many factors including current market value of the item on a used market, demand and condition of the item to name a few.
- How do you determine the value of the item?
We base the value of the item on the current market value, its current condition and the ability to sell the item. Pawnbrokers use research tools that they have at their disposal to determine an item's value and get you the most money for the item. The appraisal process varies depending on the type of item-for example, jewelry is evaluated differently than a Blue-ray player. All items that pawn shops buy or pawn are tested to ensure that it works properly.
- How can I be sure the merchandise I purchase at a pawn store isn't stolen?
According to the State of Illinois, less than half of one percent of all pawned merchandise is identified as stolen goods. That's because customers must provide positive identification and a complete description of the merchandise. This information is then transmitted daily to law enforcement, which dramatically decreases the likelihood that a thief would bring stolen merchandise to a pawn store. We are required by State and Federal law to report every transaction to law enforcement everyday.
- Are pawn shops regulated?
Yes, Pawnbrokers are governed by all of the major federal laws that apply to entities designated as financial institutions. The federal laws that regulate the pawn industry are Patriot Act, Truth in Lending Act, Equal Credit Opportunity Act, as well as Data Privacy and Safeguard of consumer information as part of the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) Rules. States have regulated the pawn industry for decades, and most pawnbrokers are licensed and regulated by local authorities as well.
- Do pawn customers enjoy the same protections under federal law that customers of other financial institutions enjoy?
Pawn transactions are the only type of consumer credit that requires reporting to local law enforcement agencies. In many states this reporting is required daily, and must include extremely sensitive personal information about the consumer (i.e. ethnicity, gender, address). Much of this information qualifies as "non-public personal information" under federal privacy law and is entitled to protection as such.
- Is my personally identifiable information secure?
Yes, state and federal laws regulate the privacy of your loan transactions with us and we have procedures in place to safeguard your information. However, we are required by law to report all pawn transactions and items that we purchase to the local law enforcement in order to protect against property crimes and unauthorized pawns / sales. (See: Customer Privacy Notice)
- Do most pawn customers lose their merchandise?
No. On average, about 80 percent of all pawn loans are repaid. Repeat customers make up a majority of the business, similar to any other lending or retail establishment. We establish relationships with our customers because they often borrow against the same items repeatedly. pawn shops are the only loan service to offer non-recourse loans, looking only to the item being pledged to recover our investment if the borrower chooses not to repay the loan.
- Are pawns rates excessive?
No. To provide their service, all lenders must charge rates commensurate with the size and duration of the loan, collateral, risk and recourse. Pawn transactions are small-dollar, short term loans with no hidden charges.
- What are your rates for a loan?
Highland Jewelry & Loan offers a descending rate scale. Meaning the more that you borrow, the less the service charge.
Our loan rates are below the State allowed Percentage Rate of 1/5 (one-fifth) the amount of the loan (i.e. 20% per 30-days.)
- What do I need to obtain a pawn loan?
In order to obtain a pawn loan, you must be at least 18 years old, and have a valid government issued photo ID. It must be one of the following:
- Drivers license
- State issued ID
- US/Immigrant ID
The law prohibits pawn shops to do business with any person appearing to be intoxicated nor with any person known to have been convicted of theft.
(See: State of Indiana Department of Financial Institutions).
- Can you give me a quote on an item over the phone?
Unfortunately, it is very difficult to evaluate your items without seeing them. We do however guarantee that we will loan you the most that we possibly can.
- Can I buy/sell or pawn a gun?
Yes. Highland Jewelry & Loan is a licensed Indiana FFL.
- What methods of payment do you accept?
For loan payments, we accept cash only.
If you are making a layaway payment or if you are purchasing something from us, we accept Cash, Visa, MasterCard, and Discover.
- Do you offer layaway?
Yes. The terms are 10% down payment and 10%/month minimum payments. You can pay more than this to retrieve your item faster.
- Is my merchandise safe while it is in pawn?
Yes. We have an excellent alarm and video surveillance system in place 24/7. Your jewelry is placed in an envelope and locked in the safe and left untouched until you come back to redeem it. All pawns are locked behind a bullet proof wall for the extra security.
- What happens if I lost my ticket?
If you lose, or misplace your pawn ticket, please give us a call or stop in the store and let us know. That way we can put a note on your account so that only you are able to redeem the loan. In Indiana, the pawn ticket is a bearer document. That means that whoever has the physical possession of the ticket can pick up or redeem your merchandise. If you want someone else to pick up or redeem your loan, just give him or her the ticket and we will give your merchandise to that person after paying the amount due on the transaction so long as they have a valid State ID or Driver's License.
However, if you lost your ticket, you must inform us right away so we can notate your account. This way you are assured that your items will not be given to the person in possession of your ticket. When you come in without your ticket, you will have to show us your photo ID and sign our copy of the pawn ticket. We also compare the signature of the person who originally signed the ticket and the signature of the person picking up the merchandise.
Last Updated: 06, August, 2015