What do all these items have in common? They’re some of the thrift shop finds that I’ve sold on eBay since January.
Remington Curlers: bought for $3, sold for $42 (I paid shipping).
Lands’ End Cashmere Sweater: purchased for $3, sold for $18 (plus shipping).
Vintage Play Food: purchased in a bag of misc. toys for .89, sold for $18 (plus shipping).
Hallmark ornament: purchased in a large bag of ornaments for $3.60. Cost breakdown for each ornament came to under .50. This one sold for $39 within 24 hours (I paid shipping). I’ve got another one from that bag waiting to sell for around $40, and another at $15.
These items, and several others like them, are why I *really* don’t get saying there’s nothing good thrift shops. As far as I see it, money sitting on the shelves is a good thing.
In high school, I had the opportunity to connect online with several homeschooling mothers who were selling books online on eBay. This was before the days of smart phones and selling on Amazon too, with dial-up modems and scanners that took foooooreeeevvvver getting images of books. But it was such a fun time! The moms I chatted with weekly were so encouraging and helpful to a teenager learning about online sales and eBay… and there were *good* sales to be had. Library book sales became a driving force on week-ends, digging through stacks of books, trying to find ones that would set off bidding wars. There were lots of $20-$30 books, a few $40-$50, and I remember one that ended up at over $200 in the last five minutes of the auction.
Later I moved on to antiques and collectibles from our great-uncle’s house. We had a digital camera and faster internet at that point, although the system was wont to crash occasionally.
Then I started college and got completely bogged and overwhelmed by life. I left eBay alone… for years. Until January, when a friend started talking about how much fun she was having with eBay. The Strider’s job, thankfully, more than supplies our family’s needs but I still thought it would be fun to try my hand at it all again. I was also running out o freasons to go to the thrift store and needed to either stop going or to start making money from it. As you can see, the latter method is working quite nicely.
Next week I’ll talk more specifically about how I’m doing it right now and how eBay is different from when I started back in the late 1990s. Right now I want to encourage you if you are desperately looking for a way to bring in some extra income. In 2010, my husband spent three months *without* a job and some of this income would have been very helpful at that point. It is so easy to feel defeated about earning extra money because the economy is hard, because we’ve got kids at home who need us, because we don’t have a specialized degree with years of job experience, because we don’t have lots of cash to invest in a business, because we don’t have space, etc. etc. But this IS a way of earning some extra money that works, if we are willing to put the work into it. You can put a small amount of time and work into it if you need supplemental things like money for music lessons, for extra gas for a vacation, to pay off a credit card…. or you can start seriously investing resources like your time (skip Pinterest and FB for a while!) and provide major extra income help if the economy is taking a serious hit on your family’s income.
Like I said: I’ll share more specific tips and ideas next week. ‘Til then, I thought I’d leave you with this link to a blog by Suzanne Wells. Her site is a rich resource of information (presented in a completely encouraging way, which I appreciate) about selling on eBay. It’s been a major help to me.
(by the way, I plan on using a smart phone soon, but the $300+ in sales I’ve had on eBay since January were done entirely without one
1) Do you sell on eBay? I’d love to hear about it!
2) If you’re contemplating selling online, what questions do you have? I’ll try and address them next week.
3) Finally: what good thrift shop items have you found in the last week? Please use our linky to share them ~ I love seeing what other people find?