When you walk into a pawn shop to pawn a piece of jewelry or inquire about a pawn loan, you’ve likely already thought about what you assume you’ll get in exchange monetarily. However, brokers have a very specific way of determining what your item is worth. How do pawn shops determine value, exactly?

It doesn’t simply come down to how beautiful a piece of jewelry is. In reality, there are several factors to consider when it comes to determining an item’s value. For you as the customer, it’s important to understand there is no mutual monetary value: the jewelry might be worth $1,000 to you but only $250 to the broker. Rest assured the broker isn’t trying to take advantage of you just because they won’t offer what you originally paid for it. Their decision is calculated and intentional, and it’s a decision based on the product’s inherent worth. Here are some of the qualities they will consider when making that call.

How Do Pawn Shops Determine Value?

Let’s continue to use jewelry as an example since it’s such a commonly pawned item.

What is the Jewelry Made of?

The metal used for the jewelry plays a huge role in determining its value, due to the qualities and demand of each. Is the jewelry silver? If so, it might be in great condition since silver is strong, but it doesn’t compare to gold, which is going to be worth more. It’s more durable, scratch-resistant, and it won’t tarnish. How pure is the gold — is it 10k, 14k, 18k? The higher the karat, the more valuable it is.

Taking this one step further, there are multiple types of gold: yellow gold, white gold, rose gold, and green gold. This could also play a factor in determining the value of your jewelry. For example, yellow gold is the purest of the golds, so it might be valued differently. Rose gold tends to be more affordable because it’s made with copper, which costs less, but it’s also very popular at the moment.

What Stones Does it Have?

Aside from the metal, a broker will also examine the stones on your jewelry. Diamonds are a popular choice when purchasing jewelry, and they reign supreme at the pawn shop. If it’s not a diamond, is it another precious stone, like a ruby, sapphire, or emerald? Maybe your jewelry is adorned with semiprecious stones, like turquoise, pearl, amethyst, blue topaz, amber, or jade. Generally speaking, precious gemstones are rarer than semiprecious, so they could very well be worth more.

It’s not just the stone itself that matters, though. Beyond this, one must consider the color and weight. One bigger stone is going to be worth more than several smaller ones, since one large stone of high quality is typically more expensive. Also, where did the jewelry come from — is it a designer piece? Is there a pricey name attached to it? This might mean you stand to gain more from it.

Finding the Right Pawn Shop for You

Are you looking to pawn your belongings or get a pawn loan? When you find the right people to work with, the process is easy. There are countless pawn shops in Las Vegas, but we offer the lowest interest rate and the greatest flexibility. Contact John’s Pawn Shop today.