Do Pawn Shops Buy Board Games in 2017

Brian McCracken


For years families enjoyed game nights together, but with that trend dying there are a lot of great games that need new homes.
Years ago, it wouldn’t be uncommon for families to have “Game night” where everyone would gather around a table a play some kind of board or card game together.
Obviously, with parents working more and children being home much less frequently than they once were, these game nights are quickly becoming a thing of the past.
With that in mind, there are many families that still have large collections of board games, or maybe they found them in their parents or grandparents house and are looking for a way to liquidate them.
At first they might consider eBay, but to be honest, eBay is loaded with board games and often with new ones, sealed in the original packaging, going for so little money that it doesn’t make much sense to sell one there.
Craigslist is often next on the list of possible places to sell a board game, and you might have some luck, but it really depends on the area and the random chance that someone is actually searching Craigslist for something like a board game to begin with.
The third option would be one that most people don’t even consider, but really isn’t a bad idea and that is to sell the board game to a pawn shop.
Why Pawn Shops Make Sense For Board Games And The Trouble You May Experience
When it comes to selling a used board game, unless it is something really collectible for some reason, there’s just not many options.
A pawn shop makes sense, but not because they are going to be able to turn around and sell it quickly, but rather because some board games might be considered novel or unique and add character to a pawn shop’s inventory.
Additionally, if someone is going to buy a board game these days, and it doesn’t come new from the store, then it will probably be an impulse decision when they are wondering through a much more general store like a pawn shop.
The issue, however, will be finding a pawn shop that will actually want to take in your board game as they will also know that there won’t be much demand for them.
You almost need to find a pawnbroker that understands and appreciates what unique character of their business more than just the value of a single transaction.
In most cases, this will mean that you will have to completely avoid larger chain operations, as they are purely numbers driven business run by investors and simply want to know how much profit is in each item they buy.
You will really want to find smaller stores, independent pawnbrokers, the type of pawn shop that is known to carry a little bit of everything and sometimes some of the weirder things that you may find.
These types of operations will likely place more value on a unique item like a board game, especially if your board game is either very old but in great condition, or if it is a very uncommon game that has developed some kind of cult following.
Finding A Pawn Shop That Will Possibly Buy Your Board Game
I wish I had an easy way to help you do this, but board games can be such a unique item that it will honestly either be a little bit of a struggle to find a pawn shop immediately interested in them, or it will require a little luck.
In most scenarios, I would tell you just to go to Google and search for the local pawn shops in your area and call each one.
However, in this case, I would suggest the exact opposite. Most pawn shops would probably just say no over the phone on these because they know they won’t have much value typically and don’t want you to be upset if you drive all the way to where ever they are and only get offered a few dollars at most.
Instead, what I suggest you do is start with smaller, local pawn shops in your immediate area and just walk in with the board game to see what they say.
It doesn’t make much sense to drive way out of your way for some exotic pawn shop unless you have some strong reason to believe that they will take it no matter what it is.
Whatever you do, please keep in mind that chains like Cash America, or Cashland, for instance probably will have no interest in board games at all unless they have an exceptionally talented manager running that store.
The One Thing You MUST Do Before Taking Your Board Game To A Pawn Shop
No, with all of that having been said, there is one thing that you absolutely must do before you even think about taking your board game into a pawn shop.
You’ve got to verify that you have EVERYTHING that goes with the board game with you when you take it in.
This is for a few reasons:
It would be hard to find extra pieces for board games. There aren’t a whole lot of crazy board game enthusiasts out there these days (or at least, not as many as there once was) and so you don’t have easy access to spare parts.
The games will typically have a low value, missing parts will make them nearly worthless. If the pawn shop may only be able to offer you a few dollars for your board game, if you start trying to figure out how much it would cost to replace missing parts, it just doesn’t make sense for them to buy a game that needs that kind of re-investment to make it complete.
If there is any other tip I could give you when it comes to taking a board game to a pawn shop, it would be to try to make sure that everything is as clean and dust free as possible.
Obviously, many baord games have cardboard boxes and layouts, so don’t soak them with water as that will ruin them, but using a very lightly damp cloths on them just to get dust off the surface will normally be all that you need to do.