Collateral 101: How To Borrow Against Heirloom Jewelry

In economic hard times, people turn to jewelry, precious metal, and even gold teeth to raise cash. They scour through attics and jewelry boxes for silver, gold, diamonds, and anything else of value to help pay the gas bills, the mortgage, or to purchase gifts to put under the tree. When recession starts to bite and gold prices skyrockets, more people decide to pawn grandma’s ring as a source of quick cash. Here are institutions that accept fine jewelry as collateral for a loan.

Pawn Shops

These lenders provide loans based on the value of items. Pawn shops usually will offer you a fraction of the item’s value and arrange for you to renew the terms periodically – anywhere from one to four months is the typical time frame. They will keep your jewelry in storage until you redeem it as long as you continue to pay on your loan. However, missing a payment allows the pawn shop to store and sell your jewelry, usually for a profit.

There may be a variation between brokers because regulations only set maximum but not minimum amounts. Furthermore, each of them may value your item differently, so it’s wise to check for rates around your area first.

Going to a pawn shop is a popular way to borrow against heirloom jewelry, but it’s not your only option. Dedicated jewelry lenders and even banks may accept your item as collateral and make you a loan. In some cases, their terms will be more favorable than what you can get from a pawn shop.

Secured Jewelry Lenders

These lenders specialize in handling jewelry and may offer a higher rate of your item’s value. Like pawn shops, they can sell your property if you don’t make your payments. However, they sometimes charge lower storage fees and interest rates, making it more affordable to borrow from them.


While car and home loans are the traditional forms of collateral you’d find at banks and credit unions, some of them still accept jewelry. Before making the loan, the lender may require you to submit a collateral appraisal that states the value of the jewelry in terms of what it can be sold for. Most banks are not interested in making a small loan, so try to go for this route if you have a valuable piece or collection at hand.

When you inherit jewelry, take your time to decide what to do with it. After all, an heirloom has a significant meaning and most of the time, family members opt to keep it. Still, there’s nothing wrong with using your inherited jewelry as collateral if you have a financial emergency or its design is simply not your style. Rather than letting your collection sit and catch dust, you could try to take out a loan secured by jewelry.

As an acclaimed lender and buyer of high-value assets in Arizona, Biltmore can help you determine the real worth of your jewelry. We only give top-dollar for luxury assets whether in the form of a sale or a secured loan. Call us today at 480-470-1935 (Chandler) or 480-470-8376 (Scottsdale), or visit one of our offices for a free appraisal.