Southwest Florida pawnshop sees increased pawning

FORT MYERS

A SWFL pawnbroker sees an increase in pawning.

With high interest rates and record inflation, people are making tough choices to make ends meet.

Thanks to the price of gas, food and rent, pawnshops are booming. People sell what they have to pay their bills.

Jose Leyva works at Larry’s Estate Jewelry and Pawn at 41.

“Unfortunately with the economy and all that absorption, fuel prices, inflation and all. Yeah, we saw a lot of new faces, we saw a transition,” Leyva said.

He has been in the industry for more than 20 years and said the past six to eight months have been difficult for his clients.

“It hurts, it hurts sometimes, because you hear some of the stories and, and it touches your heart,” Leyva said.

Before, it was people who came and looked for a rare treasure.

Now people are coming in hoping to sell and too often taking what they can to make ends meet however they can.

“You want to help everyone, but there are times when we just can’t help everyone. So we help whoever we can,” Leyva said.

James Boyes is a disabled veteran who uses all his tools.

“I know a lot of people bring in goods that they wouldn’t normally sell or pawn. In my case, I no longer need my power tools,” Boyes said.

The shop’s popular items for sale are jewelry, guns, and electronics.

(CREDIT: NEWS GLANCE)

Torrence Robinson went to sell his Amazon tablet. And he got much less than he expected.

“He didn’t give me $100. But he gave me enough to go and do what I had to do,” Robinson said.

Many people also apply to pawnbrokers for secured loans.

The folks at Larry’s said they help as much as they can. But they can’t give everyone what they want because they’re in business to make money.