What Is Layaway? How does it work?

Layaway works differently than shopping with credit cards or using installment billing plans. With layaway you make payments over time, but your purchases stay in the store until you finish paying for them.

While every store has their own rules, most layaway programs follow the same four basic process:

  1. You pick out the items you want to put on layaway. Many stores only offer layaway for items in certain departments, such as jewelry or electronics.
  2. You make a down payment. The down payment varies by store. Some stores let you choose the amount, while others charge an amount based on your total purchase price.
  3. You make small payments over time. You can make weekly, biweekly, or even monthly payments, depending on the store’s policy.
  4. Once you pay off the total purchase price plus any layaway fees, you can pick up your items.

The seemingly straightforward process has a myriad of complicated fees. While every store has a slightly different policy, stores charge some or all of these fees:

  • Service Fee. The service fee covers the store’s cost of processing multiple payments and keeping the items off the shelves. The service fee are $6 for 2-months and $8 for 3-month layaway plans.
  • Cancellation Fee. Most stores charge a cancellation fee if you decide to cancel your layaway plan, or if you cannot make all the payments by the due date.
  • Restocking Fee. In some cases we will have a restocking fee if you do not make your payments on time, or do not finish paying for your products by the due date.

Pros of Layaway Plans

Compared to other methods of financing purchases, layaway can be your best option for the following reasons:

1. Interest-Free Purchasing
While layaway does come with fees, you won’t be charged interest on your purchases. Even with the fees, layaway may cost less than charging your holiday purchases to a credit card.

For example, suppose that in December you charge a $900 TV to a credit card with 18% interest. If you pay the total off in February, you’ll have paid one month’s interest, or $162. This makes the $5 service fee more appealing, and in this case layaway is clearly the better option.

2. More Buying Options
Layaway provides an alternative to using a credit card to pay for purchases. If you do not have a credit card and don’t wish to acquire a store card, layaway provides another method to pay for purchases over time. If you have a credit card but would like to make it through the holidays without charging all of your gifts, layaway may be the best option for you.

3. Availability of High-Demand Items
Layaway comes in handy during the busy holiday season when popular electronics and toys can sell out quickly. Putting a popular item on layaway now guarantees you will have it for the holidays.

4. Available Online
Some retailers offer layaway for purchases made through their online stores. Online layaway saves you the hassle of dealing with holiday shoppers, waiting in long lines, or going to several stores looking for a popular item.

5. Easy Acceptance Criteria
Unlike a credit card, layaway programs do not conduct income or credit checks before approval. To qualify for layaway you simply need proof of identification showing that you are at least 18 years of age and a down payment. Since acceptance policies are generally pretty relaxed, even people with past credit problems can qualify for a layaway program.

Layaway Makes It Yours

Take advantage of our convenient Layaway option. With only 20% down you’ll get easy-to-afford monthly payments. You make payments over time and pick up your items once you’ve made your final payment. It’s a great way to lock in what you want at today’s low prices.

How To Layaway In Four Easy Steps:

1. Choose Your Item

Come in to Spring Valley Pawn & Shop, select the item you want and we’ll hold it for you.

2. Put 20% Down

Put down 10% as a minimum, plus a small fee.

3. Make Payments

Make your scheduled payments. Choose from 3 or 4 months.

4. Pick Up Your Item

Pick up your item upon final payment.

Get what you want and layaway today at