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Sunday, January 4, 2009

My little brother

My brother works for a place I will not name. They succeed by taking advantage of those already in tough situations.

There are two parts to the business. One where they buy your stuff for resale. Two where you bring in your item, they give you cash for it and hold it until you come back in 30 days and either pay the interest, or pay the lot and get your item back.

The interest rate? Thirty percent.

Of course, the aim of the game for them is to buy your item for as little as they can. Being that most of the people here are desperate for cash (or else, why would they be there?) they argue very little.

The formula they try to stick to is:
- work out what the item would be worth brand new
- take two thirds of that, that's what they aim to sell it for
- give the seller one third of that

So if you come in with an item worth $1,000 brand new, you're walking away with about $220 and whatever you sold goes in the shop for $660 (I rounded)

Anyway, this is all background. I want to tell you about one customer in particular.

A woman came into the store a few weeks ago. Her mother had just passed away, and she was left a ring which she was selling. My brother has quickly learned how to value all manner of things, jewelery included, and had a look at it. He quickly realised, this was an expensive ring.

But, because she kept talking about how desperate she was, and how she just really wanted "a few hundred dollars", he decided to be the store hero. He offered her $500, which she graciously accepted.

He and his boss had a closer look at it, and decided they could easily put then ring on the shelves for $7,000 and sell it. Profit to the business, $6,500. My brother was loved.

Not long after though, the phone rang. It was the woman's brother. He found out she had sold the ring to "go to the city and buy shoes" and he was not impressed. He wondered if there was any way he could buy it back.

Someone at the store must have got something that resembled a conscience, because they sold it back to him for $550.

So that's one of the many stories he has told me from his line of work. And, because the whole post has been about him, I'll finish with another story about him.

When he was organizing his wedding, they had to decide what music they wanted played in the limousines. His selection (which was not very popular and was rejected) - "Highway to Hell"


  1. Gee, I wonder what place that is.. bahaha

    I think if i was that woman I would've kept the ring. Sentiment over shoes..?

  2. Yeah, I don't know why I hid the name. You're the only Australian here and we've talked about where he works (and even if we hadn't, it's obvious)

    But the woman must have issues. That's probably why her brother followed up on where the ring went. Whether she is just one of those people who blows all her money or whether money is hard to come by for her, but you have to be desperate or off to sell a family ring for a shoe trip.

  3. It's a well known fact that women love shopping but to trade in a ring which must have sentimental value for shoes? Really nutty...

    Btw, you've got a new reader in me!

  4. Thank you Endless Randomness, always nice to gain another reader =D

    And yeah, to sell your deceased mother's ring for whatever you can get for it to buy shoes, hard to understand.

  5. :D He's like a pawnbreaker/seller! I'm sure there must be great items of interest among the store's stock. I'm glad they had conscience and returned the ring...a nice thing to do.
    Regarding the song? Ah, how cool is that? I'd love to be in a limo listening to that!!!!!!!!!!

  6. Scon..you stole Natasha from me :( This is the first time I feel "readers' jealousy" she won't read my blog ever again :( she won't comment on my blog ever again :-( sigh, she's a great kid, I'm glad you're reading her blog and she's reading yours as well, sighle.:D

  7. Yes, he does get cool items in the store. He's picked up a cheap big screen TV and stereo because he's been there to get them as they've come in.

    And, in relation to Natasha, as our friend Billy says... "She's my family now..."

  8. That's one of the best stories that I have read in awhile. Nice!

  9. It's really nice to know that there are good people in the world still! Thanks for sharing!

  10. Always happy to share =D

    And yes, goodish anyway. They could have just given them their money back, but I guess, at the end of the day, it is still a business.

  11. You have a lot of commentsssssssss :D Sconsy is poooopular, can I be your friend? Will you give me popularity? You can be Serena Van der Woodsen and I can be Blair Waldorf, what do you say?

  12. Thrice, you are my friend. And, while I might have 13 comments now, six of them are me and 3 of them are you =P

    And why do I have to be Serena? Serena is a girls name, I want to be Blair.

    Ok, after looking them up on Wikipedia, I now realise they're both girls.


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