Empire Loan Owner & CEO Michael Goldstein today announced that his company will offer furloughed federal workers interest free, no fee loans for the duration of the government shutdown
Boston, MA – Empire Loan, the “one stop money shop” for Greater Boston and Providence, Rhode Island consumers, has a solution to help local area federal workers survive the historic government shutdown. Today Empire Loan announced that they are offering no interest, no fee loans to qualified furloughed employees.
This past Friday, roughly 800,000 federal employees missed their first paycheck. About 380,000 employees have been furloughed and another 420,000 are currently working without pay. Congress has already passed a bill that guarantees all federal employees will receive back pay once the shutdown is over, but that does little to help them while it drags into its fourth week.
“I hate to think that there are so many federal workers out there with little or no financial options to ensure their bills are paid and they have food on their table to feed their families,” said Michael Goldstein, owner and CEO of Empire Loan. “So we decided to offer them what we’re calling an FDT Loan … a loan that they can access Fast, Direct, Today.”
An Empire loan uses a customer’s personal property as collateral instead of their credit. What individuals can borrow is based on the value of the item they bring in to Empire Loan for appraisal. For example, jewelry, coins, electronics, musical instruments and tools can all be used as collateral for a loan. Based on the value of that item, Empire Loan will lend furloughed federal employees cash on the spot with no fees, no interest, no credit check, paperwork or spiraling debt. Once they are back to work – no matter how long it takes for the government shut down to end – furloughed employees can pay back the interest free loan and get their collateral back without compounding interest or lingering debt.
“We want these federal employees to know that we are in this with them for the long haul,” said Goldstein. “Obviously we all want this government shutdown to end as quickly as possible, but if it continues indefinitely, our offer stands for the duration … interest free loans with no fees involved for all qualified furloughed federal employees.”
About the December 2018 Shutdown
The second shutdown of the United States federal government in 2018 – which has continued into January 2019 – began at midnight EST on Saturday, December 22nd, making it the longest U.S. government shutdown in which federal workers have been furloughed in history. The shutdown occurred when the United States Congress and President Donald Trump could not agree on an appropriations bill to fund the operations of the federal government for the 2019 fiscal year, or a temporary continuing resolution that would extend the deadline for passing a bill. The Antideficiency Act prohibits federal departments or agencies from conducting non-essential operations without appropriations legislation in place. As a result, nine executive departments with around 800,000 employees had to shut down partially or in full, affecting about one-fourth of government activities.
About Empire Loan
First established in 1985 by Michael Goldstein, Empire Loan is New England’s leading pawn shop with 8 locations in Boston, Providence, New Bedford, Worcester, Stoughton, Lowell and Lynn. Empire Loan is more than just a pawn shop, it’s a local, community-focused business that strives to change the image of pawn shops. Empire Loan enthusiastically supports the communities where they operate, providing donations to organizations like the Boys & Girls Club, Girls Inc., Health Centers, and local Arts & Entertainment organizations. In 2011, Goldstein created the Empire Loan Charitable Foundation which supports a wide range of programs in the communities where Empire Loan operates.
A pawn loan uses something you own as collateral instead of your credit. What you can borrow is based on the value of the item you bring in, which can be jewelry, electronics, musical instruments and tools. Based on its value we lend you cash on the spot with no credit check, paperwork or spiraling debt.
You pay back the loan with interest in a few months and get the collateral back without compounding interest or lingering debt.
And over 90% of our customers do get their merchandise back.
The idea that stolen items end up in pawn shops simply isn’t true anymore. Extensive reporting requirements for every item that comes in is a huge deterrent for thieves. At Empire Loan, everything we receive is meticulously described, photographed and transmitted to a police database. Learn more.
The holidays are done and the presents and decorations are packed away. Now what do you do with the gift cards you’ll never use? Bring them to Empire Loan and turn them into cash!
Empire Loan buys gift cards from over 700 merchants and pays cash on the spot. No machines to fuss with, no sharing credit card or bank account information, just bring in your gift cards along with your ID and you walk out with cash in your pocket.
All those gift cards to the clothing store you would never be caught dead in, can be turned into cash that you can use wherever you want. If you’ve ever received a gift certificate to a high end department store where the $50 card might get you a pair of socks, you would probably prefer the cash. One customer even came in with a gift card for a restaurant chain that doesn’t even have locations in New England. In all these cases, Empire Loan will pay cash for those unwanted gift cards.
Everybody thought gift cards would be a popular holiday gift for family, friends and service providers when you couldn’t figure out what to give them as a gift. Gift cards would let them shop for themselves and get the right size or color item. Unfortunately, you can’t please everybody. Instead of letting it sit in your wallet or purse taking up space, bring your unwanted gift cards into any of Empire Loan’s 8 locations in Boston, Providence, New Bedford, Worcester, Stoughton, Lowell or Lynn along with your ID and you could be walking out with cash.
Some retailers are offering to buy your gift cards from their competitors in exchange for gift cards to their stores. Others are offering store credits to their stores for gift cards to their competitors. If you didn’t want a gift card for their store, why would you necessarily want one from a store that basically sells the same things?
The advantage to getting cash for your gift cards is that you get CASH that you can spend anywhere you want to get just what you want. Once again, Empire Loan makes it easy!
Broken jewelry – everybody has some, but nobody wants to just throw it away. What can you do with your broken or damaged gold, diamond and silver jewelry? Empire Loan has 3 options you can do with those broken items that have just been sitting in the bottom of your dresser drawer.
There is one other option: just let that broken jewelry sit in the bottom of your drawer collecting dust. But why do that when the other options are so much better!
Pawn shops have gotten a bad rap in the past. Negatively portrayed in the movies, pawn shops are associated with seedy-looking characters and dark and dirty storefronts.
Well, the times have changed! Pawn shops are prominently featured in TV shows as great spots for bargains and the perfect place to get short-term loans that aren’t available from banks or traditional lenders. Modern day pawn shops are clean, well-lit businesses that serve consumers from all walks of life.
Time to correct some of these misconceptions:
Pawn Shops are regulated by local, state and federal laws pertaining to loans, purchases and privacy issues. People often think when their property is stolen they simply go to a pawn shop and see if their merchandise is on display there, but it’s really not that simple. Here’s a description of the process and what you should do if your merchandise is stolen.
First, understand that Pawnbrokers and other second hand dealers are generally required to report all transactions they make to local police or authorities. In addition to pawn shops, jewelers and consignment shops that buy gold and silver jewelry and other items are all required to maintain records of transactions and report them to local authorities on a regular basis. This often includes providing pictures and descriptions of all the items they take in, along with a copy of the ID and photos of the person who brought the item in. The pawn shop must then hold the item for a specific period of time, usually a minimum of 30 days, to allow the police time to investigate if the merchandise was part of a crime.
Fairly recently New England law enforcement agencies have centralized this information through NESPIN, New England State Police Information Network, where all six New England states (Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island and Vermont) share the information of what has been brought into pawn shops and second hand dealers across the region, allowing local law enforcement the opportunity to search database to see if items brought in were the result of a crime. This database is not available to the public but is accessible to local law enforcement.
As a victim of crime, here’s what you should do:
Empire Loan wants to help you recover your merchandise. Hopefully the above information will help you figure out how to do just that. If you have any questions or need any further information, feel free to contact any of Empire Loan’s 8 locations, check our website (www.EmpireLoan.com) or call us at 800-375-PAWN
On Monday October 3rd, 2016, a new law took effect from the Federal Government titled the Military Lending Act that affects Pawnbrokers and other lenders nationwide. Though the law was crafted primarily to control abuses by predatory lenders such as payday lenders and title loan companies. The law requires lenders to offer those on active military duty, their spouses and dependents a capped interest rate of 36% annually.
The purpose of the law was to rein in some of the exorbitant interest rates and fees being charged by these predatory lenders. In certain instances, these lenders charge monthly interest rates of 2O% or more along with other fees and penalties. In addition, many of these types of loans tie into a consumer’s bank account and report to credit rating agencies, resulting in deeper credit problems and spiraling debt for recipients.
Now when a customer comes into any of Empire Loan’s 8 locations they will be asked if they are “active duty military or a spouse or dependent of one”. If they are, Empire Loan will be in full compliance and waive any appraisal fees. Regarding the 3% monthly interest, Most Empire Loan stores were already in compliance due to rates set by the local communities we operate in.
If you are active military or the dependent or spouse of one, Empire Loan wants to thank you for your service and make sure you are getting all the benefits that you are due.
You can read more here: http://www.consumerfinance.gov/askcfpb/1783/what-are-my-rights-under-military-lending-act.html
October is a special month with the changing of the seasons and a choice of two birthstones that come in a wide range of colors; opal and tourmaline.
Tourmaline has become very popular in jewelry due to the wide range of colors it can be found in. There is something for every style and taste. Tourmaline is best known for featuring multiple colors in each gemstone, featuring two, three or more colors in a single gemstone and is known for having the widest range of colors of any gem. The more distinct these color differentiations, the more desirable to stone is. Tourmaline colors ranges from black, blue or dark brown through green, red, pink and yellow. One type of tourmaline is referred to as Watermelon Tourmaline for its green and red color variation in a single stone.
Tourmaline is found all over the world including Afghanistan, Brazil, East Africa in even in the US.
The other October birthstone is the opal, from the Greek Opallos, meaning “to see a change (of color)”. Opals also show a wide range of colors from a milky white to black with flashes of yellow, red, green and blue. The 3D reflection within opals is one of the stones finest and most notable features.
The GIA describes opal as: Fireworks, Jellyfish, Galaxies, Lightning with a shifting kaleidoscope of colors unlike any other gem. The most often used term is Play-of Color, which speaks to the floating reflections of light and color or fire in the stones. The five main type of opals are:
Empire Loan recently launched a new campaign with a simple message: Freedom Loan. This can have many meanings for many people. Financial freedom to do the things you want to do and freedom from worries over bills that are coming due. It also means freedom from the hurdles that are put up by banks, financial institutions and even the friends and family you sometimes rely on to help you get through tough financial times. But it also has a real meaning in how you go about getting the cash you need, when you need it.
A Freedom Loan from Empire Loan also means freedom from paperwork and applications. No long forms to fill out with information about your high school transcript and your first job bagging groceries 20 years ago. Freedom from high fees being charged just to apply for the loan in the first place. With an Empire Freedom Loan, simply bring in a valid ID like a driver’s license and you’re on your way.
Empire loan offers Freedom from credit and background checks. It doesn’t matter if you have bad credit or no credit. A good paying job or no job at all. A Freedom Loan simply requires something of value to secure the loan: gold and diamond jewelry, electronics, musical instruments, tools, designer handbags, just about anything with a secondhand value can set you on the road to financial freedom.
An Empire Freedom Loan also means no spiraling debt or compounding interest. Instead of a loan that starts piling on the interest, taps into your bank account or starts searching through credit reports, a Freedom Loan from Empire is already paid for with the collateral you provided. This means you don’t keep falling further and further into debt, but that you can walk away without owing a penny. Your credit rating is unaffected, there is no reporting to credit agencies, no threatening phone calls from bill collectors and you can still come back and do more loans if you ever need to. That’s Freedom!
If you think an Empire Freedom Loan might be for you, call us today and we will try to set you free!