Strapped for Cash? Pawn Your Wine Collection.

A couple of pawnbrokers in New York are accepting auction-grade fine wines as collateral for loans, according to the Wall Street Journal. Both Borro Co. and New York Loan Co. lend money to cash strapped New Yorkers, although—unsurprisingly—wine is not their specialty.

Wine-based loans tend to be large due to issues with storage and delivery. New York Loan “won’t make a three-figure loan against wine” while Borro has a minimum value of $2,000. Pawnbrokers send valuation teams to validate all wines before taking them as collateral. If accepted, customers can lend between 50% to 75% of wines’ value. 

Paul, who borrowed money from New York Loan, pawned off eight bottles of 1990 Domaine de la Romanée Conti La Tâche. With the $14,000 loan, he bought a sapphire ring to propose to his now-fiancée. He looks forward to retrieving the wines and hopefully “uncorking at least one bottle at the wedding.” [The Wall Street Journal] [Photo: Flickr/Steve Sutherland]