What To Expect When You Are Pawning

ABC’s of Pawning Your Items

When you need a loan you may wish to use some of your valuables to get cash. While pawning your items can be a trusted way of obtaining immediate cash for your valuable, it is important to understand how the process works.

You may have diamond jewelry, a luxury watch, silverware, gold and silver coins, camera equipment or other items of value that you’d like to use to get a loans.

Here are somethings to expect when you bring your valuables to a pawn shop.

Value of your items

Negative sticker shock occurs for many people first utilizing pawn services. You may have a fine piece of jewelry for which you have the receipt or have had appraised at a certain value. These values, however, are probably not necessarily going to be the approximate value of your loan.

The value of your loan will depend on the pawn dealer’s assessment on (a) the resale value of your items and (b) the ability to sell it in a timely fashion.

Jewelry is often sold at very high premium well above the actual value of the precious metals and diamonds, emeralds, rubies or other jewels from which it is crafted. Most fine jewelry can not be resold at the original or assessed price. Most jewelry at pawn shops is assessed around fifty percent of the value of the precious metal content and any jewels in the piece.

Keep in mind that an appraisal that you may have on a gold ring, for example, is an estimate of the cost of replacing that ring if you had to go and purchase a new one. The actual pawn value of your ring, however, is more likely to be much lower and valued on the basis of its precious metals and gem content.

In such cases, you will probably be offered a percentage of the precious metal or gem value. You will need to know how much gold or silver are in your items to get an idea of their approximate melt value.

Gold Value

To make this determination you will need to first determine if your gold is 9K (37.5% gold), 10K (41.7%), 14K (58.5%), 18K (75%), 22K (91.6%) or 24K (100%). Gold jewelry will have these carat marks stamped somewhere on the item. After determining the gold content, weigh your item and calculate its metallic value by multiplying the weight of the item by the percentage of gold it contains.

Example: If you have a 18 carat gold item that weighs one half an ounce. Multiply the 18 carat percentage 3/4 or .75 times the 1/2 ounce weight or .50 and you get .375, or a 3/8 of an ounce of gold. (.75 x .50 =.375)

Then multiply the sum .375 ounces by the current per ounce price of gold. Say gold is $1200 an ounce, multiply that by .375 ounces and you’ll get $450. That is the approximate gold value of your item.

Silver Value

Silver jewelry (necklaces and rings) and silverware is valued on the amount of silver in those items which are generally either “sterling silver” (92.5% silver) or sterling plate (very little silver). To make an initial estimate of value multiply the weight of your silver jewelry or silverware in ounces times the silver percentage.

Example: If you have three pounds (48 ounces) of sterling silverware Multiply the 92.5% or .925 X 48 to determine the number of ounces of silver in the silverware. (.925 X 48= 44.4 ounces). Then multiply the number of ounces times the per ounce price of silver. Say silver is $17 an ounce, multiply that by 44.4 ounces and you’ll get $754.80. That is the approximate silver value of your silverware.

Unique pieces of jewelry may have value for the right buyer but that buyer may not materialize for months, if ever, meaning the pawn dealer may end up holding such jewelry in the event of a default.


The condition of your items will factor heavily on the current value of your items. Visible wear or defects will impact their value.


Once you have agreed on the value of your valuables and amount of the loan, your pawn dealer will place your valuables in safe keeping and provide you with cash and a repayment plan. If you meet all of your payments, your valuables will be returned to you at the end of the loan period. If you default on your loan the pawn dealer will retain your items and attempt to resell them to recoup the value of the cash loaned to you.

Bring your valuables to Port City Pawn for an estimate of their worth or call 603-373-6185.

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Port City Coin & Jewelry is located at 599 Lafayette Rd (Route 1) | Portsmouth, NH (next to Bowl O Rama)
Call: (603) 373-6185

email portcitycoin@gmail.com
Visit our web site: PortCityCoin.com