Originally Posted by bwana devil
What type of margins on typical items such as home improvement/lifestyle equipment (generators, lawn mowers, etc)? What types of items have the biggest margins?
Do most people want to pawn their items or sell them? Which is more profitable and which would the owner of the pawn shop prefer?
What are the biggest drawbacks/negative aspects for the pawn shop owner?
How much volume does a typical location do?
How active is the pawn shop owner in daily operations at the location you work?
In our shop anything that has to look collectible or unique my boss falls in love with. The rarer the item the more interested he's in it cause even if he cant sell it for 5x the markup in the store he knows most of the time he'll get at least 3x on ebay. He's big on coins and basic collectibles but stuff like that people know what they're bringing in and tend to do their research before hand. Beat up stuff like lawn mowers and home Improvement items get close to nothing unless they're heavy duty like a rather large compressor. Items like that where you can find at most garage sale are never going to have a lot of resale value. Surprisingly, a lot of his instruments have been selling like crazy. People bring them in not having any idea how much they're worth and sell it to us for cheap. About a month ago a guy came in and we pawned him 200 for his tenor sax and he said he would be back. He lost it 30 days later and it sold on ebay for over $1575.
The same thing goes for gold and silver obv with the going prices being high. Every pawn shop, like us, is just another middle man that you sell your jewelry to and then we sell it to our guys for more to get scrapped. The dealers might try to sweet talk you and say its just gonna sit in my store till a pretty lady comes and has to have it but dont believe them. As soon as you leave the store that jewelry is getting melted and destroyed, EVERY TIME.
It depends on the item and the value it holds to the customer if they want to sell it or buy it. If its something they cant give up but need cash fast they'll pawn it. It's a win win for the dealer because if they pawn it your getting paid to take their items and put it in the back of the store until they come back in 30 days to pick it up. Its basically a paid self 30 day storage for your personal belongings. If they sell it to the dealer then the dealer has to figure what they can resell it for and just try to get it as below that cost as possible.
Not that many drawbacks honestly. The biggest one that I hear daily from my boss is how horrible the drunks and crackheads smell when they come in. I'd say we average about 10 customers a weekday and 25 on Saturday (closed Sunday) so theres a lot of dead time where we casually put items up on ebay to make more profits. I know 10 customers doesn't seem like a lot especially when only 4 of them make transactions, but if you make one big score (typically a gold buy) your set for the entire week.
As for my boss, he takes his job very seriously but i handle all of the computer work because he's not internet friendly at all. He's at the store 11-4 Mon-Sat. and deals with all of the customers. When there are no customers he'll casually help me post stuff online but typically just relax in a recliner and watch cheaters or judge mathis lol.
Thanks for the questions...Sorry I'm still getting use to posting on here even though i've been a member forever lol so you'll just have to bare with me to answer all these questions individually unless somebody knows a quick fix.