Nobody likes to have too much clutter. It makes our homes untidy, messy and unorganized. Still, we all do it, even though we could literally be standing on a potential goldmine.
Realistically, anything in your home can be sold, to the right person for the right price. If you have lots of toys, games, clothes or tools that you simply don’t want, or don’t need, there’s a high chance they could be worth something.
Or, you could leave them festering in piles of dust, doomed to clog your cupboards until the end of time. Selling unwanted goods is one of the quickest, easiest ways to create enough money for that holiday, TV, you name it. And, it’s rather straightforward to do!
Of course, you could simply donate everything to charity, and that’s fine too. But for those that want to make a bit of money, that’s what this post will focus on.
1. Choose what to sell, and choose a sale price (if applicable)
Our homes are littered with hundreds of potentially valuable items – to the right buyer.
And that’s the important bit. Yes, a metal spoon won’t be of value to anybody, but some items – like a power drill – are valuable to specific people. So if you’re looking at your stuff thinking ‘nobody will want this,’ think again. There’s a reason you bought it in the first place!
But it still needs to be for the right price. If people feel they’re being ripped off, they won’t touch you. You have to look objectively at the item, and assess its value on the current market.
– Check how much it goes for, used. This will give you a rough idea of the kind of money people will pay for your item. You can use sites like eBay, Craigslist, etc, for this. Also see how common the item is to find used. If it’s common, the only way to sell yours is to undercut those other people or have a higher-quality item.
– Now, look at the item brand new. See how easy it is to find – if at all – and see what the general price is. If your item is easy to get hold of brand new, but not used, then you’re filling a market gap. This means you can price the item rather close to its brand-new cost. Don’t go right on top of it though!
Using these tips, you can determine your selling price. Have a minimum and maximum in mind, in case you need to adjust. If your item is rare, hike the price up – if it’s common, hike it down. Be realistic.
Alternatively, you can use a variety of ‘middle men’, sites who will buy your stuff off you/help you sell it. Typically, these sites will choose a price for you and give you a quote, which does shorten the process. More on middle men in just a second…
2. Choose a middle man
Unless you’re physically driving to deliver goods yourself, you’ll need to post them. Postage costs money, which can significantly undercut the profit you make on an item. So finding a ‘middle man’ – a platform on which to sell your goods – is all but a requirement.
Not just any middle man, though. As we just mentioned, those shipping costs will really come back to haunt you, especially for international delivery. So look for a platform that offers free delivery – at the very least, in your own country.
Another area that can cut your profits is PayPal fees. Usually around 2% of the transaction, consistent use can see you lose cash after a while. Luckily, some middle men, like BuyBack Express, cover these fees for you, so bear these extra costs in mind when selling.
In addition, beware other fees that certain middle men will impose on you simply for selling. eBay charges a fee for each sale you make, which works out as a percentage of the total transaction. Be sure to read the T’s & C’s before you set up shop, anywhere.
3. Organizing a yard sale
It’s much, much easier to sell your items online – after all, there is a larger community there. But if you live in a popular area of town, perhaps starting a yard sale would be beneficial.
There are several pros to starting a yard sale. One, if you don’t sell anything that day, you neither lose or make money. It’s a completely risk-free practice. Again, to use the eBay example, you may have to pay certain charges for simply putting your item up as a listing.
Secondly, it allows people to see the item in person. It’s hard buying used goods online – we can’t see what we’re buying, and the element of trust is lost. In a yard sale though, people can see exactly what they’re getting, making this a good way of selling visual-based items like clothes.
– If you want to set up a yard sale, make it a community event! Get your neighbors in on the game and set up a sizeable sale. The more interest you generate around it, the more people you’ll have to potentially buy your stuff.
– Open up a room in your house for people to try on clothes. You could even use an outdoor room, like the garage, for security reasons. The more trust you place in people, the more likely you are to make a sale.
– If you have a community or neighborhood noticeboard, use it. Take pictures of your items and pin them up, with a contact number. Alternatively, pin up the time, date and location of your yard sale to increase its visibility. Make it an event!
And that, in a nutshell, is how to more effectively sell your old belongings and junk. Some important points to reiterate; beware selling fees denting your profits, check new/used value, and try a yard sale.
You have to make sure you’re not ripping yourself off, too. If the item is genuinely valuable, price it so! Just make sure you keep things honest, and the sales will come flying in.