(Reuters) When Marc Kaye needed a loan to fund his boutique insurance firm at a time when payroll, his kids’ college tuition and a mortgage payment were all draining his cash reserves, he didn’t go to a bank.

Instead, he pulled a 1940s Picasso pencil drawing off his living room wall and made an appointment with Borro (borro.com), a high-end pawnbroker. Borro did not require mounds of paperwork, did not care about his credit rating and did not put him through the third degree over how the money would be used.

“I needed some immediate cash,” says Kaye, who quickly got a six-month loan of $39,500, agreeing to a monthly interest rate of 3 percent plus about $175 in processing fees. “I had never pawned anything before.”

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