Sneaker Head Paradise: 16-Year-Old Charles Reed Opens The World’s First Sneaker Pawn Shop

June 16, 2014  |  


Teenagers typically don’t have much in the way of valuables. But they might have tons of sneakers. And with the growing number of sneaker heads out there, there just might be some money-making possibilities here.

Chase “Sneaker” Reed and his father have opened what is being called the first sneaker pawn shop.  His father, Troy Reed noted of their business venture: “Young kids don’t have jewelry. They don’t have cars. But what they do have is the thousands of dollars worth of sneakers in their house.” The idea to create a sneaker pawn shop came up when Charles asked his father for $50 to purchase sneakers. Once the sneakers were purchased, his father asked for his money back and held Charles’ sneakers until the debt was paid.

The New York Post says the 16-year-old Harlem high school sophomore liquidates exclusive sneakers from clientele who want to earn quick cash. So a pair of rare sneakers that already retail for hundreds of dollars but are currently collecting dust can fetch much more from Reed’s Sneaker Pawn Shop. For example, “one pawned fancy footwear to pay for his brother’s funeral. Two teen girls liquidated their sneakers to pay for prom dresses. Another savvy ­investor flipped a pair of LeBron Crown Jewels and two pairs of Jordans and used the thousands in profit to pay for his move to The Bronx from Brooklyn.”

And some of these shoes can be re-sold for tons. For example, the Post notes that a pair of Nike Air Yeezus sneakers are on eBay at prices ranging from $1,700 to $15,000.

Charles, his father and family friend Rahsaan “Uncle Bless” seek out high-end or dead stock (discontinued) sneakers. If someone walks into the shop with a pair, the shoes have to pass the qualification test  (i.e. rubber not yellowing or soles not excessively worn) and they will purchase them for $100. If the prospective seller wants their sneakers back, they will have to pay $100 plus $20 for its storage cost. But if a buyer wants to purchase the sneakers, they will make an offer and the original owner will be notified. The original owner keeps 80 percent of the profit and 20 percent goes to the Sneaker Pawn Shop.

When Charles is not taking care of business or studying for exams he can be found custom painting sneakers, as well. This goes to show, black boys rock too.

Below is a commercial for Charles’ business. For more information, click here to see the Sneaker Pawn Shop site.

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