Yes, they are completely legal! Utah pawn shops are regulated and licensed by local municipalities. The Pawnshop and Secondhand Merchandise Transaction Information Act is available to download as a PDF on the Utah State Legislature’s official website. Every item is thoroughly checked when it first enters the store and again before it leaves the store. So if something is off, it will be seen right then and there.

What is a Pawn Shop?

A pawn shop functions as a store for buying, selling, and getting short-term loans using a customer’s personal item as collateral. After an appraisal, a pawnbroker will determine the value of your item, and you’ll then agree on the final price. After some paperwork, you’ll depart the pawnshop with cash in hand leaving your item to the pawnbroker. You can wait until you’re able to pay the item off and regain possession of that item, or you can simply take the cash and dash out of there with no penalties. It’s an excellent way to get a personal loan without requiring a credit check. If you don’t have good credit, don’t hesitate to visit your local pawn shop and see what they can help you with.

How Does a Pawn Shop Make Money?

Pawn shops make money by providing people with personal loans and reselling items. The items sold to customers are usually the same items that were previously pawned to get some quick cash. The level of interest collected on loans and profits made from selling merchandise are two principal income sources for any pawn shop. Some pawn shops will order their own items and sell them that way, but not every pawn shop will do that.

What Do I Need to Pawn or Sell an Item?

To pawn or sell an item at a pawn shop, all you need is a valid form of identification (driver’s license, military ID, concealed carry permit, etc.) and be at least 18 years of age. There are no exceptions, everything is state-regulated, and the rules must be followed. Failure to comply with the laws will result in no service! 

It would help if you also had an open mind about the price of your item; you don’t always get what you are looking for as far as price goes on an item. If you do get what you are looking for, great. If not, don’t make a big deal about it, you can always walk away from an offer. Most pawn shops generally pay between 40-70% of what the item is going for on the current market. Sometimes it can be less, and sometimes it can be more.

How Do I Know if a Pawn Shop Item is Stolen?

Every pawn shop in Utah is required to download a police report of everything done that day. It is all recorded, whether coming in or leaving the store. The police have access to all pictures of the items, the serial numbers, and the condition; they have everything. Anything the pawnbrokers can see, the police can see also. If a serial number on an item is ever missed, the pawnshop will get in trouble with the police, and they will not hesitate to give you a strike.

If an item is identified as stolen, it is required by law to take that item and put it on police hold, separated from everything else in the store. If anything ever gets stolen, you can call the police, and they can look up the serial number and match the item to its respective serial number if it ever turns up in a Utah pawn database.

Pawn shops are nice to have around; they offer personal loans with no credit checks, good deals, and good customer service. Everybody runs into urgent payments such as rent, vacation costs, unexpected medical bills, etc. Going to a pawn shop, they understand what it’s like to have some compulsory payments come up, and they will do everything in their power to try and help you get quick cash so you can make that payment.