Why I Am Giving Away The Small Stuff

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( Tuesdays I share a picture from our week that inspired me to write a post)

It is time to confess I don’t resell as much of my stuff as I once did. In fact just this week the kids and I filled the entire back of my SUV with items we no longer needed and dropped them all off at a local thrift store.

3 Reasons To Give Away The Small Stuff

You see before I started this blog, reselling was one of my favorite ways to add money to our families income. I would hold a Craiglist blitz weekend and raise enough to go camping for a week. I would list items on eBay and pay for swimming lessons and soccer fees.  I held a yard sale and made enough for my husband and I to go on a couples weekend getaway. I would drag bags of too small clothes to consignment stores and cash out my account to pay for a fun day with friends.

I had time on my hands to do those sorts of things, and I was good at it them,  which caused  people to ask me to help them resell their things and so I started this blog to help them and then I didn’t have so much time on my hands.

We also once lived in an awesome location for yard sales and now we don’t. My children’s clothes were once small enough for a consignment store that was very easy to use and now their not.

My season of life has completely changed and with it my reselling habits has changed. I  now have a reselling limit. If I cannot sell an item for $10 or more to the thrift store it goes (with the exception of Homeschooling curriculum that I sell at a once a year second hand curriculum sale)

My limit reminds me of Crystal’s story about why she doesn’t make homemade tortillas . My time is valuable.  It isn’t that I am earning a lot of money on this blog, but I am  earning some, and each hour I spend reselling instead of blogging takes away from my potential  blog earnings, yet reselling can often yield a higher hourly wage for me than blogging.  It is a bit of a juggling act but by setting my reselling limit at $10 profit minimum,  I have made balancing it easier on myself .

3 Reasons why I am loving My $10 Resell Limit

1. I am supporting local charities

I have been deeply touched by the book  More Or Less  and I have been praying for a way to give from my families excess ( you need to read the book to understand) and giving my small stuff to a local thrift store who uses the money to feed the local hungry seems like a great answer to prayer. A single income family like my own can’t afford to give many cash donations but we can afford to donate the small items we no longer use.

2. The limit makes decluttering faster

Before I use to take time deciding whether an item we no longer used was best sold at a yard sale, or at a consignment store or perhaps some other method of reselling would be better. The process was time consuming, and I often put it off because it took so much time. Now I hold an item up and say to myself “can I get $10 or more for this ” and if not it goes in the give pile. Just this week I was able to go through our entire attic in under an hour collecting the SUV load in the above picture for the thrift store. In my “reselling almost everything days” that same job would have taken hours.

3. I have less stuff around

I use to have boxes of stuff in the attic for the next yard sale, boxes of clothes in the closet waiting for the consignment store to change seasons, and boxes in the family room full of books waiting until I got enough to sell as a lot on eBay. Now I try to snap a picture and sell and item in a local Facebook Buy and Sell group the minute I decide we don’t need it , and  as soon as I have a box or two for the thrift store it is out of the house on my next trip to town.

Your stage of life is probably different than mine. You need to decide what level of reselling  is best for you and your family in your current stage of life. For me and my family that level is sticking to selling big items only and allowing smaller items to fund local charities.

This post was inspired by My Changing View Of Stuff on A Slob Comes Clean. After reading Noni’s thoughts on her changing views on the value of her stuff I began thinking more and more about my own changing views of my families stuff. I highly recommend Noni’s blog A Slob Comes Clean to all messies like myself. 

Need help getting organized? Follow my Organization board on Pinterest.

  10 Ways To Tame Clutter (small)Looking for ways to tame the clutter in your home that you don’t want to sell? Here are 10 of my favorite ways to tame clutter.

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  1. I use to sell the same way – Craigslist, eBay, yard sales – and loved the extra money, but then, like you, my kids got out of that age. Now it’s easier and more worth my time to donate it. At times, my time is worth more than the money. Thank you for a great post! Sharing and pinning!

  2. I had a laptop sleeve sitting on my table trying to decide if it was worth my time to resell. I decided after reading your post that I just needed to give it away!

    My mom is a teacher and she will take a lot of my smaller stuff for her prize box. Great way for me to get rid of that stuff that really isn’t worth much. I don’t know what I would do without her prize box!

    • I wish I had a prize box to donate too, although since the kids are getting bigger we seem to be collecting less little trinkets. Now our main giveaway stuff is clothes that are out grown before they are worn out, books and too small sports gear.

  3. Your blog is amazing, so I’m personally thankful you spend more time on it than reselling now. 😀 This is basically my story in a nutshell as well. I used to make a full-time living on eBay and reselling. But lately, my heart just isn’t in it. I’d much rather be blogging. They should make a bumper sticker that says “I’d rather be blogging…” LOL

  4. Great read. Ive learned to purge things over the years and clean out the clutter! ‘Streamlining’ my life. What made me turn a new leaf was a friend passed and I cleaned out her life. It was just all this ‘stuff’, made me look at my life, things I sold, etc. Our time spent enjoying life is far more valuable than the ‘stuff’.

    • Yes, I share the same feelings after cleaning out a loved ones place. I was surprised how little I really wanted to hold on to, and how much I just saw to be generic stuff. In the end, memories are made from moments spent together not stuff.

  5. Interesting read! I don’t have a lot of stuff but after moving recently, we certainly tried to sell a lot of items and eventually many things were either given away or taken to Goodwill. I think a $10 rule is smart. Everything else seems to take up too much time, and effort, listing and re-listing, for a measly $3. We never seem to have enough for a yard sale, nor a great location, so that hasn’t been a great option. I think it’s great you’ve decided to do more giving. God bless you.

  6. Before you drop off that load to the thrift shop, estimate its fair market value. When you get in the car, set your trip odometer. When you arrive at the thrift shop, drop off the items and ask for a receipt. On the receipt mark the mileage, and the value of the items, you may need to add the date, name of store and its address. You may need to write “clothes” or “baby items” or “household glassware” as a description. Place receipt in an envelope labeled “non monetary donations” with your tax paperwork. Then at tax time you can itemize the mileage as well as the amount donated. It might not sound like much, but it will add up over the year.

    • Thanks for the explanation on how the donation write off for taxes work. I am sure my readers, and myself will benefit from it.

  7. This is a great way to consider what’s worth your time and what just isn’t. Our church is hosting a rummage sale soon, and I think I’m going to donate those less than $10 items rather than hanging on to them until I find the time to list them.

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