You know, working in this industry, I’m almost never shocked by what will come through those doors with people when they are looking for some quick cash.
Most of the time, it’s the normal stuff that you see every day.
However, some days, you get someone that comes in with something really unique, really rare, and ultra expensive.
A few months ago, I had one of these very days.
A young lady brought in a Porsche Design Shisha Gold Hookah Limited Edition.
A what? No, it has nothing to do with the car brand, which was my first thought as well.
None the less, a Porsche Hookah sells for about $8,000 new!
Yeah, that’s not a typo. It was a $8,000 hookah! Far more expensive than your average hookah, I assure you.
Now, with that having been said, my staff means well, but they initially turned the customer down for a loan because they had no idea what they were looking at.
If you haven’t read my article on Do Pawn Shops Buy Vapes, you already know that when something new and interesting comes into the pawn shop, I’ll do whatever I can to learn about it.
Well, this hookah was no different…
What I Learned About Pawning Hookahs
As the young lady began to walk out of the pawn shop, I ran after her to find out more about what she had.
Luckily she came back in and she began educating me about hookahs. Mind you, before this I had only ever heard of them and thought that they were just fancy bongs when I saw them in stores.
After about 5 minutes, I began to realize that hookahs and bongs have nothing to do with each other.
Together, the customer and myself, began researching the wide variety of hookahs online and I started to see that you have everything from cheap $20 hookahs that fall apart instantly all the way up to a hookah that costs about $1,000,000!
Needless to say, when I began to look into her hookah, I was impressed that she actually spent a little over $8,000 for this thing.
That having been said, used on eBay, they only sold for about $1,400. None the less, that was plenty of collateral for me to make her a loan against it.
So, from now on, if they hookah is really worth something and not some $50-$100 “Cheapie,” I will always take them in as long as they are clean and complete,
Do Other Pawn Shops Buy Hookahs
Well, since I’m in Ohio and don’t expect that people would fly across the country just to pawn something at my pawn shop, the greater question will probably be – do all pawn shops accept hookahs?
To that, I sadly have to tell you that no, there are a lot of pawn shops out there that won’t take your hookah in.
You and I know that there are nothing wrong with hookahs, but the typical person who is unfamiliar with them will probably look at it like it’s just a piece of drug paraphernalia.
That having been said, I feel pretty sure that if you can demonstrate how much your hookah costs and that it’s not used for smoking marijuana, you might have a better shot at getting a pawn shop to make you a loan against it.
How To Find Pawn Shops That Pawn Hookahs
Now, keeping in mind what I said above about most pawn shops not accepting them as a general rule, let’s talk about how you can go about locating a pawn shop in your area that would.
The easiest way to do this is simply go to Google.com and search the phrase “Local pawn shops” or “Pawn shops in my area.”
Google will return a list of results for pawn shops near you, as well as their phone numbers.
Make a list and give them a call one by one. Ask them the following:
- Do you accept hookahs for a loan or buy them?*
- What do you need with the hookah?
- What do I need to have to do business with you?
Now, on the first question, if they say “No” you can try to remind them that your hookah isn’t a cheap one and costs sell hundred or thousands of dollars and isn’t for smoking marijuana. They may still say no, but it’s worth trying to educate them a little in case they don’t know what a hookah really is.
You might get lucky and find one or two pawn shop in your area that is open to looking at it.
If not, there is a last ditch effort you can try, but it will involve a little more work.
Educating Pawn Shops On Hookahs
As I said before, if no pawn shop in your area is willing to look at your hookah when you call them, then there is one more thing that you can try to do.
You should know exactly what make a model your hookah is if it’s expensive and actually worth something.
Look them up on eBay and check the boxes for “Used” and “Sold” listings to see what hookahs like yours have actually sold for on eBay.
Once you find two or three print out the auctions and take them with you to the pawn shops.
If they look at the hookah and instantly deny it, show them what used hookahs like your sold for on eBay in the past.
It’s really important that whatever auctions you print off are for USED hookahs, not new hookahs. The reason is that your hookah is not new, even if you never used it. The pawn shop could never sell it as new, and therefore they are purely interested in the prices for used models like yours.
The Single Thing You Must Do Before Taking Your Hookah To A Pawn Shop
Now, if you are actually going to transport your hookah to a pawn shop and have them look at it, there is one very important thing that you must spend about 10 minutes doing first.
Clean the heck out of it!
Make sure there is no residue of anything, anywhere. You want that hookah to look just as clean as the day you bought it.
Pawn shops in general don’t like things that are dirty, but they will still take them in most cases.
However, when we are talking about something like a hookah, if it’s at all dirty, the pawn shop may have some serious reservations.
The first big concern for them may be that they don’t know exactly “What” was smoked out of the hookah previously.
Additionally, residue and ash can hide things like cracks or imperfections with the hookah that would serious affect it’s resale value.
Because of these reasons, you want your hookah to absolutely sparkle. Clean all of the ash and dark marks off it.
Don’t use any really aggressive solvents or abrasives as that may damage the finish of the hookah itself, but 91% Isopropyl Alcohol would be a good place to start.
Moving on from that, maybe a little “Goof off” will help, but if you use that, try it on a small test area first in case it turns any metal parts a different color or negatively affects the finish and appearance of your hookah.
Whatever you do however, you’ve absolutely got to make sure that it is 100% clean before you pack it up and take it to the pawn shop.