There weren’t lines out the door, but Black Friday was still a busy day at Rockingham Trading Post in Plaistow.
At one counter, a man was bargaining with an employee over some silver coins. On the other side of the store, a group of people were browsing through a collection of guitars.
“I expect there to be a lot of activity here in the next few weeks,” owner Victor Giaimo said, “especially people who are coming in with items.”
With the calendar turning to December, some pawnshop owners are anticipating one of their busiest months of the year. While some will be buying their holiday gifts, many will also be looking for some extra cash.
“Between Thanksgiving and New Year’s, people are a little tight on money,” said Al Nolan, owner of Al Nolan’s Jewelry & Pawn on Rockingham Road in Derry. “Heating costs are going up. Electric and fuel costs are going up. People need the money.”
Giaimo said people are looking to pawn a variety of items.
“Broken gold, any kind of necklaces and rings, silver flatware. Those are what people are trying to get rid of,” Giaimo said. “This year, people are pawning off game systems. People are selling their PlayStation 3 to get a PlayStation 4 or the new XBox.”
Nolan said electronics has surpassed jewelry as his most popular transactions.
“It’s just what people need now,” he said. “Electronics have become a necessity, while jewelry is more of a luxury. It has definitely changed over the years.”
But December is pretty much business as usual at some other local pawnshops.
“People aren’t really coming in here more to buy anything,” said Jason Kimball, owner of Plaistow Trading and Pawn. “They always need more money throughout the year. The economy is still pretty bad, so we always have people looking for more money. They’re borrowing money so they can go out and spend more money.”