mistake #1. pawn shops are not a place where women hang out. i was a complete stand out wearing my hot pink dkny zip up hoodie.
mistake #2. i am not the best negotiator when i am not 100% comfortable with a situation. the reality is, everything that i know about pawn shops, i learned on this History Channel's Pawn Stars (love Chumley!).
mistake #3. i did not know what my item was worth. since i bought the item online from an estate auction, i didn't think to request an appraisal or any paperwork.
mistake #4. i really like jewelry. and i really like diamonds.
so i took a gamble. i paid $130 for the ring, knowing nothing about the value of the jewelry.
i walked into the first pawn shop. dirty. raunchy. my skin felt grimy just walking in there. the young kid behind the counter was probably born in 1992. and this was going to be the guy to determine what my diamond and emerald 14kt gold ring was worth. this schmoe was going to be my appraiser. lucky me.
meanwhile, his boss/store owner was stuffing his face while ebaying right in the middle of the store. he would randomly belt out one single line to 80s rock songs. this guy had no shame. i think that out of the 10 men in the store at the time, i probably felt the most shame being there.
the kid offered me $200 for the ring. one small emerald was missing. i looked down at the ring on my finger and it was gorgeous (recall mistake #4). i didn't want to let it go for such a low number. i told him i wasn't desperate for the money and left.
i went to two other pawn shops to see what they would offer. in all aspects of my life, i get three estimates. for contractors, for car trade-ins at dealerships, and now - for pawning adventures. the offers at the next two shops were $160 and $170. and just as grimy.
ouch. now i had to make the walk of shame back into shop #1 with Schmoe and Steve Perry. they weren't really surprised to see me back. it was almost as if they had expected me. i took my $200 and drove home.
not a bad gig for $70. i basically got paid to go on a little escapade and experience a new industry. not so sure that i would do it again... but i honestly can't stop looking at estate sales now! who knows, maybe i'll go on another adventure :)