The average pawn loan is $150. So if you’re wondering, “What can I pawn for $100?” there are plenty of options. Or even if you want more or less, this is the article for you. If you’re looking to pawn something for $50 to $500, try taking in electronics (gaming systems and DVD collections), gold and jewelry (gold pieces and diamonds), golf clubs (Titleist and Callaway brands), smartphones (iPhones and Samsung Galaxy models), and watches (TAG Heuer to Rolex). We have the specifics in our lists that break down what you can typically pawn for $50, $100, $200, $300, and $500.
How to Maximize a Pawn Loan
Pawn loans are based on the potential resale value of your item, minus a profit margin for the pawnbroker. You can expect to borrow 25 to 50% of the item’s resale value, according to the National Pawnbrokers Association. The resale value is the price the item can sell for, not the price you originally paid.
To get an idea of how much you can get for your item(s), try using an online pawn shop calculator. You can also receive offers from pawn shops in your area.
To get the most money, make sure your items are clean, scratch-free, and have all the accessories and/or original parts. Be sure to remove all personal data from computer equipment and smartphones. You may want to unlock your smartphone, as unlocked phones are in higher demand. Find instructions on how to unlock your iPhone or Samsung Galaxy online.
What Can You Pawn For …
The following lists break down what you can typically pawn for $50, $100, $200, $300, and $500.
- Electronics: Newer model gaming systems in good condition with all the cords and accessories are reliable items to pawn for about $50. A large collection of mint condition DVDs or Blu-Rays may also get you a $50 loan — estimate about $1 apiece.
- Smartphones: The iPhone 5 and the Samsung Galaxy S5 average around $50, but there is a wide loan range — $20 to $250 — for smartphones.
- Tools: Professional quality or high-end power tools — including brands like Bosch, DeWalt, Rigid, and Snap-On — are good for about $50. You may need to bring a few tools, not just one.
- Musical instruments and equipment: If your amp, keyboard, guitar, or other instrument has a resale value of $200, you can probably get a $50 loan.
- Electronics: Digital cameras like Canon, GoPro, Panasonic, and Sony average a little more than $100.
- Gold and jewelry: The average price of gold has hovered around $40 per gram for the last several years. Gold items sell for 60 to 80% of the market price, according to JewelryNotes.com. You can use this formula to calculate the amount of pure gold in your item. If your item is 14K gold or higher, you’ll need it to weigh 10 to 14 grams or more to get a $100 loan.
- Golf clubs: Titleist and Callaway are desirable golf club brands; Wilson clubs are less in demand. A set of men’s clubs can fetch $100; a high-quality bag and accessories will add to the price.
- Musical instruments and equipment: Large orchestral instruments like cellos, custom acoustic guitars, and equipment like wireless microphone sets are in the $100 range.
- Smartphones: The iPhone 6 and 6s and the Samsung Galaxy S6, S7, and S7 Edge average a little more than $100, but there is a wide loan range — $5 to $500.
- Watches: Luxury watches fetch a premium over jewelry because of their workmanship. Based on resale value, you can expect a loan around $100 on a TAG Heuer or Shinola in good condition.
- Electronics: Late-model, major-brand laptops average a $200 loan. Pawn loans for an iPad Pro can also be about $200.
- Gold and jewelry: A clear, colorless diamond in a good cut (i.e., round or princess) weighing a half-carat or more will probably get you about $200. Smaller coin collections or ones with more silver coins fall in this range as well.
- Musical instruments and equipment: Antique instruments or instruments with sterling silver or solid gold components, can get you about $200. Some vintage electric guitars like Gibson, some professional mixers and microphones, and portable recording equipment may also be worth about $200.
- Firearms: The average pawn loan on a gun is about $300, but the loan range — $15 to $2,000 — is huge. The type of gun, age, features, and manufacturer make a big difference. Brands in the $300 range include Beretta, Heckler & Koch, and Smithfield. Check your local gun laws before trying to pawn a gun.
- Smartphones: The iPhone 7 was averaging around $300 in 2017.
- Watches: Breitling, Chopard, and more exclusive models of Rolex have pawn values in this range.
- Cars: Some states allow pawn shops and title lenders to loan money on your car. If the Kelley Blue Book value of your car is $1,000 to $2,000 or more, you can pawn your title for about $500. Beware: Title pawns carry significant risks; see the Federal Trade Commission’s advice before pawning your car.
- Electronics: New, top-of-the-line electronics can earn a $500 loan. For laptops like the MacBook Pro, “new” means two years old or less. For a big screen TV, “new” means six months or less.
- Gold and jewelry: A diamond weighing one carat or more with very good clarity, color, and cut should get you a loan of $500. Gold coins may be worth up to $500 if they are collectible items and/or very large in size. Silver coins are worth less than gold coins, but an extensive silver coin collection may get you $500.
- Musical instruments and equipment: If your instrument or equipment is selling used for $1,000 or more on eBay, you can expect to be able to pawn it for $500. The most desirable musical items include Les Paul guitars, vintage Fender precision bass guitars, antique orchestral or jazz instruments, and professional-quality microphones, mixers, and speakers.
- Watches: A Panerai or Patek Philipe will probably get you a $500 loan.
If you want to borrow $500, you’ll need to pawn popular, high-value items in mint condition or a large item like your car. Prices will change based on demand in your local market, but, generally speaking, you can expect a $500 pawn loan for luxury goods like Patek Philipe watches, diamonds weighing one carat or more, or a new MacBook Pro. Other items — like iPhones, golf clubs, and firearms — will fetch between $50 and $300. Keep in mind that the average pawn loan is $150.
Remember that if you get something from a pawn shop, you should be sure to understand their return policy. Here’s the article where we outline the Pawn America return policy. It’s a good idea to review so you understand exclusions, time limits, and more. Pawn shops are very different than a store like Walmart. In case you bought something used at Guitar Center and want to return it instead of pawn it, here’s the Guitar Center used gear return policy.