When purchasing gold coins, there are a number of local options. These include coin shops and shows, as well as pawn shops. Buying from a pawn shop can be a great way to get a good deal on gold coins, though the selection is often limited and buying here requires doing your research.
If you prefer to invest in gold jewelry rather than coinage, a pawn shop is among the best places to buy it. Pawn shops will nearly always have a selection of gold jewelry on hand. Such shops are notorious for buying anything gold. This means that most are skilled at identifying the real from the fake, so you can rest assured that you’re not buying anything counterfeit.
However, their stocks of gold coins are frequently limited to the most popular types, such as American Gold Eagles. If you’re looking for anything rare, a pawn shop is probably not going to offer it. This extremely limited selection means pawn shops will likely not serve as a steady source of gold coins.
This is a hit-or-miss prospect; a given pawn shop may have no gold coins in stock at the moment, or it may have a whole collection that has recently been pawned. If you’re after a specific coin, a pawn shop is not the best place to find it.
There is also the worry about buying stolen goods. Gold coins are frequently taken during burglaries because they are easily identified as valuable. After the thief pawns the goods, these gold coins may end up for sale in your local pawn shop. Many collectors shy away from such purchases because of ethical concerns over buying coins stolen from fellow investors. The prospect of buying stolen goods is certainly something to think about before visiting a pawn shop to add to your collection.
This anonymity does have an advantage. Many investors like to buy from pawn shops because they can walk in with cash and walk out with gold. Unlike with online purchases, you don’t need to send a check and wait for your gold to arrive in the mail. This immediate gratification and the extra security that come with having the gold in your hand by the time you leave the shop is why many investors choose to visit in-person dealers like pawn shops to purchase their gold.
Another downside of shopping at a pawn shop is that they likely won’t be able to tell you anything about the coins you see. If you’re a new collector with lots of questions, don’t expect to get answers for them here. Before buying from a pawn shop, make sure you know your prices.
Because pawn shops carry a wide array of merchandise, not just coins, they may not have a good idea of the current market value of a particular coin. As such, prices may be much higher or lower than you’d find elsewhere. Remember to factor in sales tax if you’re in a state that charges taxes on precious metal purchases.