Antiquing has become a popular pastime thanks to the new-found appreciation for older, well-loved items and reducing, reusing and recycling. If you are interested in antiquing, you might be wondering where to find your next great treasure. While flea markets and garage sales are a great way to start, don’t underestimate your local pawn shop!

Your local pawn shop is likely a treasure trove of unique items that would thrill any fan of antiquing, from beginner to professional. If you are surprised to hear that a pawn shop might have what you are looking for, it is understandable. Pawn shops are the secret weapon of many smart shoppers. However, it is always a good idea to arm yourself with helpful knowledge before you begin your search. Keep reading to find essential tips to help you along your antiquing journey at pawn shops.

How Pawn Shops Work

Understanding how a reputable pawn shop accrues its inventory is important when you start your treasure hunt. First, pawn shops have long been valuable members of their communities. They provide everything from emergency cash loans to a place for people to easily and quickly sell unwanted valuables. People bring their valuables to their local pawn shops to either sell or pawn, which is how your next great antique will find its way to your home.

For the purposes of antiquing, pawn shops are valuable to you because they only purchase and stock high-quality items. Unlike places like garage sales, where you must sift through mostly cheap or broken items, your local pawnbroker has already done a great deal of the hard work in deciding what is valuable.

Start Your Search

Identify the community you are antiquing in. If you are a Florida local, coastal communities will hold a multitude of different kinds of antiques like vintage surfboards, tropical style homegoods, beachy artwork & furniture, etc. The more distinct a community, the more likely it is that you will find related items.

Spotting Valuable Antiques

Spotting valuable antiques is vastly different from how people evaluate other items. For example, human imperfections and minor wear often make an antique more valuable than pristine items. You can also know where to look for designer marks on a particular item and use a magnet to determine sterling silver vs. silver-plated metal.

Becoming an Antiquer

If you are just starting your antiquing ventures, you might be in the middle of figuring out what items genuinely speak to you and what your goals are. Below are some popular types of items for antiquing. Each has its own metric for determining its rarity and value. Some are even more likely to have documentation on its origins and history.

  • Wood

  • Rugs

  • Art

  • Silver

  • Porcelain and ceramics

Becoming knowledgeable about what to look for in a particular type of item will arm you with a valuable resource when looking for genuine antiques.

Trust Your Instincts

Always trust your gut when deciding on buying an antique, regardless of the circumstances. If something seems a little off about an item, it is usually the right decision to walk away, even if you feel conflicted. Plus, one of the great things about antiquing is that there is always something new and different around every corner. Also, keep in mind that trusting your instincts goes for good feelings as well! If you have a great feeling about an item, be sure to take it home.

Work On Your Negotiating Skills

People can sometimes be intimidated to haggle or negotiate at a pawn shop. This might be because pawn brokers are professionals, but dealing with a pawn broker does not need to be a stressful experience. After all, unlike many sellers at flea markets or garage sales, pawn brokers do not overvalue their items. Also, pawn brokers are used to haggling! They will not take it personally and will not be offended if you decide to walk away.

If you are looking for a trustworthy pawn shop to start antiquing, remember the Alamo, on Transmitter Road in Panama City! We have a large selection of valuable items in stock and we are always looking for new inventory if you need some quick cash. We also provide quick confidential loans on just about anything of value. Let our pawn brokers help you!

At Alamo Pawn Shop in Panama City, pawn loans are a quick and easy way to borrow money without a credit check or hassle. Loans are based on the value of your collateral, not your credit rating or pay schedule. A typical pawn loan has a term length of 30 days, plus a 30-day grace period. If you cannot pay back your pawn loan in full, including any applicable grace period, we offer extensions to give you extra time. You may also choose to surrender your collateral as payment in full. Stop by our shop or give us a call at 850-872-0700!