Popular Misconceptions about Pawn Shops

There tends to be a kind of stigma attached to the very title of “Pawn Shop”. Over the years though portrayals in TV, movies, news media, even friends, neighbors and family the pawn industry had gained a rather seedy reputation of being a lower end genre of store which fenced goods, sometimes even stolen merchandise. It simply wasn’t viewed by most as the kind of place the majority of society shopped.

This simply is not accurate.
Lets take a look at what MYTH vs. FACT when it comes to the Pawn Industry.

MYTH: Pawn shops buy and sell stolen goods.

FACT: Pawn shops abide by all local, state and federal laws. They are specially licensed and work with the police to prevent the selling of stolen merchandise. All transactions are accompanied by the seller presenting not only a valid photo ID, but also stamping the contract with a finger print. All merchandise received in is carefully catalogued for inventory purposes in cooperation with the local authorities. The police regularly compare serial numbers against items reported stolen, enabling the return of recovered merchandise to the rightful owner whenever possible.

MYTH: The clientele pawn shops attract are sleazy undesirables.

FACT: The typical loan customer who comes in and pawns an item is local to the store and just happens to need a cash loan in the short term for unexpected expenses. It isn’t usually a lack of employment or income that drives them it, its lack of savings. They are living check to check like most of America and occasionally those checks or pay period times run a few days short.

FACT: Pawn shop shoppers are bargain hunters! Why pay retail when gently loved merchandise, which seems new anyway, is often times available at hugely discounted rates?

MYTH: Pawn shops operate as they please, unregulated.
FACT: Pawn brokering is actually a heavily regulated business. In fact, at the local or state level, most pawn brokers are required to be licensed and regulated. At the federal level, they follow rules from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Fire Arms (ATF) and are regulated by the Federal Reserve Board almost in the same ways as banks. They are also required by the Patriot Act to check all customers against the Treasury Department‘s database of known terrorists. Attempting to sell stolen goods to a pawn shop really isn’t a smart move!

MYTH: Pawn shops are the last resort for people with bad credit to get loans.
FACT: Customers find that loans from pawn shops are better than borrowing money from a family or friend. Plus, it’s quick, confidential and a customer gets part of the value the pawnbroker believes the collateral would bring in if sold. Sure, the loan to collateral ratio varies depending on the type of goods pledged, but a loan of 30-50 percent of the resale of the collateral is pretty common.

MYTH: Pawn shops hope you don’t come back for your pawned items so that they can sell them.
FACT: Pawn shops have limited space to store everything. They are gaining the interest on your loan, not to steal your belongings. All pawned items are carefully catalogued and tracked. Here at First Pawn we double check by calling you if you have not come back in for your items prior to considering it as inventory and a closed loan.

MYTH: People only pawn items when they don’t want them anymore and don’t really care if they get them back.
FACT: Pawn loans are far faster and more easily granted than trying to work with a bank based on credit. Pawn loans are the only credit product that have ever been available that give the borrower short term cash, obligation free.

MYTH: Pawn shops don’t really have good brand name merchandise, its all just used junk.
FACT: We live in a fast paced, high tech society. Upgrading is the standard. We all want to keep up with the Joneses. When the new iPhones come out, the newest gaming console, or the bigger better badder TV we are where the second to last model may end up, BUT we also have top end state of the art merchandise as well, we are ready for you to come in and upgrade! Even diamonds are “upgradable”. Customers trade in their old “whatever-it-might-be” and it helps to significantly offset the cost of the newer shinier version with more bells and whistles. The fact is that shopping and upgrading at a First Pawn can save you huge amounts of money.

Tv shows featuring high end pawn shops such as Pawn Stars are helping to break the myths and present the reality of daily business in the pawn industry. It takes a vast amount of knowledge over a wide gamut of subjects, strict adherence to laws and regulations, a high level of personalized customer service and a careful inventory system to make a shop successful.

Here at First Pawn Jewelry & Loan, we take pride in our business. We appreciate our customers and want you to have the very best experience possible. If you are looking for something special or just need a little extra cash, come in today and talk with us. We are located at 889 Airport Rd. S. Naples, FL 34104. We can be reached at 239-434-7296. or by visiting www.firstpawn.com

Originally Published: http://firstpawn.com/blog/2016/01/22/popular-misconceptions-pawn-shops/

Becoming a Florida Local

Moving from the colder climate states to the tropical weather of Florida is a huge change. Making that switch from tourist to resident takes some adjustment and a bit of time.

Everyone loves Florida in the winter. Its why Florida’s population and traffic increase so drastically come “Season” (mid-October through mid-April). What we here in the sunshine state consider “finally cooling off” most out of state visitors still feel as summer weather. Mid 80’s, sunny, breezy, reduced humidity – let’s face it. We live in paradise.

If you have moved here on a year round basis and you are not a snowbird (part time seasonal resident) there are some definite benefits.

  • You no longer need heavy winter sweaters, jackets or coats – the need for closet space decreases immensely.
  • Your car will never freeze shut again, nor will you ever have to shovel your driveway and you don’t need to change out your tires for snow tires.
  • You don’t have to deal with chapped lips and dry winter skin.
  • Outdoor plans rarely impeded here in Florida due to weather (unless we have a hurricane)
  • Drinking hot beverages becomes a preference not a necessity in an attempt to thaw yourself out.
  • When traveling out of state, be it business or pleasure, it is always nice to return home to the swaying palm trees and blue ocean water. Living in vacation land makes ending an actual vacation far less abrupt.
  • Sunshine on your skin for just 15 minutes a day allows your body to create Vitamin D, boosting your immune system and your overall mood.
  • Fresh fruit is available locally all year long and sea food doesn’t have to travel to get to your dinner table.
  • The beach is there to enjoy every month of the year as well, though you will likely reveal yourself as a new transplant if you do choose to go for a dip in the ocean in January while the rest of us huddle around a fire wearing hoodies on the beach.

The first couple of summers you spend in Florida may feel extra hot.

With daily temperatures in the upper 90’s with high humidity it tends to take people some time to adapt. It’s made easier by the fact that everything down here is air conditioned. Stores, offices, homes, cars – you move from one to the other pretty quickly and unless you so choose, don’t really have to spend that much time out in the heat. I will say though, that once you have been through a few summers, your body temperature seems to regulate. You no longer feel as hot and actually are able to enjoy the beaches and sunshine in the summer months. Along with that comes the added bonus that all of the seasonal visitors have returned home. The roads clear, the once crowded reservation only restaurants are now open and airy and you are easily sat at all times of the day, there are no lines at the grocery store and the welcoming sandy beaches can be nearly empty at times leaving you feeling like you have your own private oasis.

South West Florida is a wonderful place to live. The hustle and bustle of many northern cities doesn’t come into play here. The attitude and atmosphere is friendly and laid back. If you are just joining us, or thinking of joining us – We welcome you.

We know that relocating is a huge undertaking. If you do decide on the Cape Coral, Fort Myers, Bonita, Estero or Sanibel Island areas give Sage Realty a call at 1-800-789-6618 or visit our website www.sagerealtor.com to search current listings. We look forward to working with you!
Originally Published: http://sagerealtor.com/2015/10/03/becoming-a-florida-local/




Think you aren’t an organ donor? Better Check!

Here in florida www.donatelifeflorida.org is tied in to the DMV. When you are issued a license you are supposed to have the choice of becoming an organ donor, or not if you so choose.

After hearing numerous stories from varied sources stating that human organ trafficking is happening more and more frequently and because organs are so valuable as a donor you are likely to get less medical attention if they believe they can use you as a donor. Essentially, you are worth more dead than alive.

You can choose to believe whatever you like. This makes sense to me.


I went online and found www.donatelifeflorida.org over a year ago and unregistered myself. Or so I thought. I checked back and my file seemed to be deleted. From there I went back to the DMV to have it removed from my license. They charged me $25 and sent me on my merry way.

My new license arrived expediently in the mail. Only when I opened the envelope, it still had the designation of organ donor emblazoned across it.

Upon calling the DMV to notify them of their mistake I was told “It takes up to 14 days to change in the data base. You will have to order (and pay for) another one.” So, I did. When that one arrived? Same result.

Now I was fuming. I called the DMV back and let them have it. I’m sure you can imagine how well that went. It is like talking to a wall. They only are allowed to use canned responses and not allowed at all to think for themselves. I got no where. Once again, I shelled out another $25. The third one arrived, after I had checked with www.donatelifeflorida.org yet again and my name was NOT in their registry it still read “organ donor”.

In the interest of not going postal or having a stroke I let it go and forgot about it for a good long time. Nearly a year has passed.

Today, upon reading someones Facebook status about the DMV, I decided to log on to www.donatelifeflorida.org and check my status fully expecting to find my name not listed. WRONG.

Yep! They illegally have added me back on as an organ donor against my expressly written intent. I tried to remove myself only to get a page that comes up “This page is temporarily disabled.”

Screen Shot 2015-03-11 at 10.28.51 AM
I did send them a note through their “contact” page reading:

”CORRECT MY FILE! I removed myself from this registry over a year ago… Yet I am STILL Listed as an organ donor. I AM Hereby stating legally that I am NOT an organ donor. If you continue I will obtain legal representation in this matter. You may contact me at the above email or phone with confirmation that I have been removed from this registry.

Sarah Barendse

I am not pleased to say the very least and will be taking this up with my attorney.

Screen Shot 2015-03-11 at 10.51.20 AM I wonder how many of these 8,204,432 are on here fraudulently without their consent or knowledge?

They did write back to me.


At your request, your name has been removed from the donor registry, effective 03/11/2015 11:02 AM. This means your name no longer appears on the database of people who wish to donate their organs, eyes and/or tissue upon their death.

If at some point in the future, you change your mind and wish to once again sign up on the donor registry, simply go to: http://www.donatelifeflorida.org.

Thank you.

Donate Life Florida

I responded by thanking them, but also wanting to know the IP address and date it was re-entered into their system….

You were originally registered at the driver license office on December 12, 2003. There was a change made March 4, 2013, also presumably from the driver license office. I don’t show any record of you removing yourself. I don’t have a record of what driver license office or an IP address. If you have questions, you might check with the driver license office you have used. We receive information directly from the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles.



This is dumbfounding considering I did this ONLINE March 4th, 2013 myself to remove my name from the registry. They were also not able to tell me what that “change” was that they believed to come from the DMV………The person I have been in touch with via email is going to bring the issue up to the board of directors. Hopefully that will get someone’s attention and change the way things are done.

Do you really want two governing bodies (the DMV and Donate Life) this disorganized  in charge of your body and making decisions for you that are literally life and death? I know I don’t.


Here it is April 6th, nearly a full month later, and I go on just to make sure that I have been removed. My name STILL appears registered as a donor. This is not only immoral but highly illegal.

APRIL 7th: The Response:


On further investigation, I do see where you removed yourself today. I’m not sure why, but you had two entries in the system (I searched several different ways and confirmed there were only two). One entry was generated at the driver license office on December 12, 2003. The other entry was generated on March 4, 2013, also by the driver license office. That second entry is the one you removed today. Only the first entry, the one previously removed, is the official entry and the one from which organ recovery decisions are made. They are both removed now and you or any organ recovery agency should not find an active listing for you on the registry. I will continue to monitor to make sure you remain removed. Again, my apologies for the frustration. I assure you that our intent is not immoral or illegal. Our intention is to only have people listed on the donor registry who want to be donors and we truly want to make sure that those who no longer want to be donors are removed.

So………. Hopefully this time I am actually OFF the list.
ADVICE: If you remove yourself, make SURE you check back!

2017 Really Ridiculous update that I cannot believe I even have to write!!!
Apparently, as of today, I randomly checked back in because of a video that was posted on Facebook in regard to this same subject… and low and behold… I am STILL listed as a donor! What is going on!!!!
I have no ONCE AGAIN removed myself from the list.
If this persists I am going to be looking into a class action law suit as I cannot be the only one this is happening to.