Heritage Pawnbrokers
Call Us at 1-250-746-9810

                                                                    

Frequently Asked Questions


 1. Why would someone go to a Pawn Shop to get a loan?

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Pawnshops offer the consumer a quick, convenient and confidential way to borrow money. A short term cash need can be met with no credit check or legal consequences if the loan is not repaid. A customer receives a percentage of the value the broker believes the collateral would bring in a sale. Although the loan to collateral ratio varies over time and across pawnshops, a loan of about 50 percent of the resale value of the collateral is typical. In other words, pawnbrokers feel their loan is "paid in full" at the time it is made. When a customer pawns an item, terms of the loan are printed on a pawn ticket that is given to the customer. The ticket states the customers name, address, type of identification provided to the pawnbroker, a description of the item, amount lent, maturity date, interest rate and amount that must be paid to redeem the item.
 
2. How does a Pawn Shop work?
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Pawnbrokers lend money on items of value ranging from gold and diamond jewelry to musical instruments, televisions, tools, household items, etc.. These items maintain their value over a reasonable period of time and are easy to store. All customers provide collateral, eliminating the need to distinguish high risk from low risk borrowers.

You bring in, for example, a diamond ring and we agree on a value for the loan.You provide current and valid Photo Identification and an account is verified or established. The agreement is signed, the money handed over and you leave happy with cash and pawn ticket in hand!! The ticket would indicate the following:

The item that you pawned

The amount of money loaned for the item

The amount of money due in 30 days to get the item back
Within 30 days, you have three options:


Return to the pawn shop and pay the full amount to retrieve your wedding ring.

Return to the pawn shop and pay the monthly fee to extend your loan for another 30 days

Or you can do nothing, in which case the pawnshop keeps your ring and sells it.
That, in a nutshell, is the basic pawnshop transaction. In many communities, the pawnshop is pretty much the only easy way to borrow small amounts of money. If you need $100 to make it through the week to your next paycheck, where are you going to get the money? A bank is not going to touch a small loan like that, and even if it did it would take a week or two to process the application. A pawnshop is a quick, easy way to get a loan.
Typically, loans can be as small as $20 or as high as several thousand dollars depending on the value of the collateral.
The process is much the same as any other lending institution, with the primary difference being the size of the loan, the collateral and the holding of the merchandise until the interest or the loan has been repaid.

3. What is the foreclosure procedure?
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If a customer defaults and does not return within 30 days to pay the monthly fee or pick up the item, the collateral becomes the property of the pawnshop.

4. Do most pawning customers lose their merchandise?
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On average, about 80 percent of all loans are repaid. Repeat customers make up most of our business, similar to any other lending or retail establishment. Pawnbrokers know the vast majority of their customers because they often borrow against the same items over and over again. Pawnbrokers offer non-recourse loans, looking only to the item being pledged to recover their investment if the borrower chooses not to repay the loan. It is solely the choice of the customer whether he/she elects to repay the loan.

5. How can I be sure the merchandise I purchase at a pawnshop isn't stolen?
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A very small percentage of all collateral is even suspect as having been misappropriated in any manner. Thieves and robbers are a pawnbrokers worst enemy. We work closely with local RCMP to catch and prosecute these perpetrators. We've had people arrested right in our shop, trying to pawn or sell stolen items. A customer must provide positive identification to show evidence of the transaction. This information is then presented to the police department, therefore decreasing the likelihood that a thief would bring stolen merchandise to a pawnshop. Pawnbrokers are trained to look for signs of stolen property to avoid these costly mistakes. It is not in the interests of the pawnbroker to accept potentially stolen merchandise because the police can seize the merchandise and the pawnshop owner loses the collateral and the loaned money.

6. What is the difference between buying at a pawnshop and buying at a retail store?
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Mainly price. Pawnshops can offer you merchandise ranging from 1/3 to 1/2 off retail prices.

7. Why is the image of pawnbroking changing since the 1930s?
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Today's pawnbroker is upgrading everything from the interior and exterior of his or her shop location, employee presentation, customer service, signage, marketing and the merchandising approach. Pawnbrokers focus on providing exceptional customer service and are very active in the community, both politically, and in local charities. Pawnshops today range from a single or multi-store operation to publicly held company chains. The atmosphere at a pawnshop is nothing like what you saw in Rod Steiger's depiction in The Pawnbroker -- just visit us to see for yourself.

9. Do Pawnshops attract indigents and derelicts?
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No, Pawnshops cater mostly to families and individuals who need a quick, easy loan, without filling series of papers and forms which could take weeks. The customer is in and out in matter of minutes, when time is of essence. Pawnbrokers provide mostly “bridge loans” to cover between pay periods, sick times, or between job periods.