Pawn shops versus traveling gold buyers -, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Pawn shops versus traveling gold buyers

Posted: Updated:

Gold prices are soaring.

That's prompted many of you to go through your jewelry chests to find old, unwanted gold to sell to pawn shops, jewelry stores, or gold buying businesses that pass through town.

It's that kind of company that has some local business owners upset.

I spoke with Pawn shop owner Todd Faircloth today who says these gold companies are hurting his business.

The price of gold is way up. Today, it's more than $1650 per ounce.

That's boosting business for traveling gold buying businesses like Ohio Valley Gold and Silver.

But Albany pawn shop owner, Todd Faircloth says those companies have an unfair advantage and end up hurting local businesses.

"They are not paying for a business license , they are not paying for overhead, or anything like that. They come in and take merchandise and then they are gone," Todd Faircloth, GA Loan and Pawn Owner.

Ohio Valley has been set up at the Country Inn and Suites in Albany all week buying from south Georgians. The area manager says they're not doing anything wrong. If anything, he says he provides a safer way to sell your gold.

"What he told you is untrue, we are licensed, we are bonded, we take a fingerprint of every customer, I have to give a police report itemized, I have to measure the jewelry, weight it, and take the customers fingerprint, and a copy of the record, I have to give to the police department on each transaction," says Jim Toner, Ohio Valley Gold & Silver Refinery Field Manager.

These gold buyers eliminate the middle man and he says customers are leaving happy.

"A lady on Monday came in and she had a broken herringbone necklace, two other necklaces, a class ring, and a couple of broken earring and she left with a check for $687," says Toner.

But he does understand why Albany Pawn shops might not be so happy that they are in town.

"What a pawn shop is going to give them is 25%, we give them 90%, that is why he is upset," says Toner.

Tomorrow is the last day Ohio Valley Gold and Silver Refinery will be in town.

And gold is not the only thing they will buy.

They're also looking to buy silver, platinum, and items such as coins and antiques.

Copyright 2011 WALB.  All rights reserved.