FAQs

Q?

Why use a pawn broker?

A.

When you need cash fast, major institutions like banks can’t always offer immediate help. Pawn shops, on the other hand, are an alternative solution that helps you get instant cash. If you need a cash loan immediately, then a pawnbroker may be your best option.

Q?

Are pawn rates higher than other loan rates?

A.

Pawn rates are not excessive. All lenders charge rates based on the size and length of time of the loan. As opposed to large institutions with complicated fine print, pawn shops offer short-term loans with no hidden charges. What A Gem adheres to State of Illinois regulations in order to give customers reasonable pawn rates.

Q?

Is there a risk of losing merchandise when you pawn it?

A.

Almost all pawn loans are repaid (nearly 97 percent, on average). The bulk of our business is with returning customers, often taking out cash loans on the same item. We want to keep our customers happy, so we set up manageable small-interest loans and work with you to establish a realistic payment plan. The only case in which you would not get your pawned item back is if you didn’t repay your loan within the agreed-upon terms.

Q?

How does one pawn merchandise?

A.

A pawn is essentially a collateral loan. When you bring in an item, our appraisers will determine the value and give you a cash loan based on that value. You can pawn items such as jewelry, gold, electronics, musical instruments, tools and more. When you repay your loan within the established loan duration, your merchandise is returned to you.

Q?

What if I lose my loan ticket?

A.

As long as you have your photo ID, you’ll still be able to pay on or pick up your merchandise.

Q?

What if I don’t pay on time?

A.

The best thing to do is call us and let us know. Depending on the situation, we can work with you on your payments.

Q?

What interest rates can I expect?

A.

The loan interest rates depend on the loan amount. We keep rates reasonable for our customers.

Q?

Does your pawn shop sell stolen merchandise?

A.

What A Gem does not sell, buy or trade stolen items. We strive to make sure all of our merchandise is legitimate and our trained staff knows how to identify stolen merchandise. We require identification for all of our pawn transactions, and only do business with legitimate customers.

If you have any questions about stolen items being pawned or sold, please contact local law enforcement.

Q?

How much can I get a loan for?

A.

The amount of your loan is entirely dependent on your item’s value. We have trained appraisers who assess the value of your merchandise in order to give you a proper loan amount. Condition and market demand affect the amount of the loan, but we’ll do what we can to get you the amount you need.

Q?

How is selling different from pawning?

A.

When you pawn merchandise, it is still yours. We just have it as collateral against your loan until the loan is repaid. As soon as you repay your loan, you get your item back. When you sell an item, it becomes the property of What A Gem. Whether or pawn or sell, we’ll still pay cash for your merchandise.