When 10th grader, Chase Reed took his entrepreneurial dreams and made them a reality with his New York based sneaker pawn shop, we all thought that this was something interesting. Usually, you’d think of pawn shops when you wanted to lift some fast cash by pawning off some old unwanted jewelry, watches and antique items, but not so in the context of designer clothes and trendy sneakers!
Pawn shops may have the mental image of dingy, shoddy places where you’d go to buy old and used items (sometimes even suspiciously acquired or stolen ones) at singularly low rates, but reality is vastly different. Now, you can go to a decent pawn shop to buy $1500 sneakers or a $4000 wedding gown too. So here’s a list of such interesting pawn shop business ideas that vary between strange and bizarre, and still have the potential to make money (if they aren’t already making it, that is).
10) Stuffed Animals & Plush Toys
Whether it is limited edition Barbies or Superman toys, or your jumbo teddy bears and rag dolls, your stuffed and plush toys can get you some fast cash. It is not just your teddy bears and soft toys that work great with pawn shops, but also your Nintendo games and just about any childhood games that your kids no longer have interest in, that can get you good money. Don’t believe that your child’s old toys could really have a resale value? Just go round Winston-Salem, North Carolina and you’ll find just how easy these pawn products sell.
9) Branded Sunglasses
Imagine if you could buy Louis Vuitton, Chanel and Gucci shades without paying the top dollar that the price tags often require, wouldn’t you rush out to buy ‘em? Yeah, well, there are several pawn shops out there, which buy as well as sell, branded and designer sunglasses. If you thought such pawn businesses did not exist, we’ll tell you otherwise. In fact, there’s one in Boca Raton, in the city of Palm Beach County, Florida that you might want to check out. Along with sunglasses, you’ll even find designer hand bags and accessories.
8) Construction Tools & Garden Equipment
Certain types of equipment and expensive tools are best bought second hand. We all know that, of course, especially if we are going to use them just occasionally and we don’t want to shell out a whole lot of money trying to purchase them first hand. Yet, one wouldn’t think that the best place to buy such tools and equipment would be a pawn shop, right? Well, it just might be. There are pawn shops that purchase and sell such heavy duty equipment and tools, in fact, there’s one in Whittier, California. Go check it out!
7) Wedding Gowns
Wedding gowns seem like unlikely items to pawn off, and even more unlikely items to buy second hand. We know how most brides dream it big for their wedding day and how the most important (and most expensive) expenditure happens to be that of the bride’s wedding gown. Yet, for many out there, budget weddings are the way to go and nothing fits the budget wedding theme like a ‘worn only once’ or ‘never worn’ second hand wedding gown. There’s a pawn shop in Hope, Indiana that shows us just how good the wedding gown pawn business really is with making good money.
6) Baby Accessories & Furniture
What would you think if I told you that you can get rid of all the old baby toys, prams and strollers that your kid has outgrown, and earn money off them too? It sounds like good news, right? Heaven knows we all need such a deal, after all, kids just grow up so, so fast. So, yes, there are pawn shop businesses out there, where you can sell your old baby accessories and should you need some for a while, you could buy from there as well. At much lower prices of course. So, you are still the skeptic who doesn’t think that baby accessories could turn out to be a pawn shop business? There’s one in Rosettenville, South Africa that you could check out.
5) Medical And Healthcare Supplies
Do you need a temporary wheelchair? Or maybe some home care equipment? Do you need healthcare supplies that cost a fortune and you don’t have the hard cash lying around for it? I know it might come as a surprise, but you might want to hit the local pawn shop. You’d be surprised to know that certain pawn shops buy and sell used flatbeds, wheelchairs and other medical supplies, at much cheaper prices than what a hospital store would charge. If you think that medical and healthcare supplies pawn shops are most definitely just a figment of my imagination, you might want to check out the pawn shops in Brooklyn, New York and get your own confirmations.
4) China Crockery
Almost all pawn shops buy and sell vintage crockery, expensive sterling silver and crystal wares, but I’d bet you wouldn’t think of common China crockery as a routine buy and sell item at such shops. Believe it or not, however, many pawn shops do accept general household crockery and though it is at just a fraction of its actual cost, it does mean that you can at least get some cash out of all your old dinner stuff. Not all pawn shops make bone China dinnerware into an item of business, and you might have to do your bit of research if you really want to pawn yours off, but we assure you, they are out there.
Last month’s big news was the opening of a pawn shop for sneakers by teen entrepreneur, Chase Reed. Even bigger was the news that the 10th grader had used his own stock of almost new sneakers to start the enterprise. If you thought sneakers were an odd item to pawn off, you’d be very interested in talking to the lad who claims that some of his first customers were some girls who gave up their sneakers to get themselves some prom dresses, and a guy who wanted some fast cash to arrange his brother’s funeral. There, now you know! For a real life demo, you might want to head over to Harlem, for that’s where this particular pawn shop is.
2) Guns And Ammunition
Well, for enthusiasts, guns and their ammo can become a very expensive budgetary allocation no? Well, there’s a solution. In the form of pawn shops that trade in guns and ammunition! Not only can you pawn off your old Colts and Smith and Wessons when you know that you no longer need them, but you can also go out and buy a Browning at a substantially low price, should you decide to switch brands. For a live demo of such a pawn shop business, try Cullman, Alabama.
1) Adult Toys
Is there any thought that could be ickier than this? But some people do get their kicks from slightly used ‘you know whats’. And yes, because there’s a demand, there’s obviously a supply too. While you’d think of pawn shops that trade in adult toys to be situated in back alleys, in slightly dodgy parts of town, you’d be surprised to know that these are just your local pawn shops in several big cities. In fact, for the promotion of one of their books, Kristen Schaal and Rich Blomquist also went exploring pawn shops for old and vintage sex toys and yes, they did find some fairly interesting things. If you are not the shy type, you can go out and check the finds at your local pawn shop as well!