I read somewhere that the average American home has over one thousand dollars in resale value of like new items sitting around their homes. in other words–clutter that could be cash.
I decided to change that statement into a challenge and see if I could pocket one thousand dollars or more from some of the items I declutter throughout the 90/52 decluttering challenge; this is how I did during the first three months of my Resell It Challenge.
How Much Money I Made Decluttering In Three Months: A Resell It Challenge Update
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So far during this challenge I have sold all but one item through eBay and technically that item was sold before I officially created that challenge. But that item, the deep freeze we were no longer using, sparked the idea for the Resell It Challenge for me and my readers so I am going to include it in my totals and with it the month of January.
I am writing this two weeks into the fourth month of the year (April), so for this update, I am going to take off my April sales so that the update shows what I have earned in the first three months of reselling items.
And The Total Is
$502.30 made reselling items over three months. That works out to an average of $167.43 per month. If I keep that same average up, I could end up pocketing just over two thousand dollars in one year–all from our clutter.
That is enough to pay for Christmas for our family of five and a week of camping, which once again reinforces something I want all my readers to learn: small streams of income add up–the little things do make a difference.
What I Mean By “Pocketed”
Twice already I have used the term “pocketed”. What I mean by it is the amount of money I earned after eBay fees, PayPal fees, and shipping. So far all the items I have sold except the deep freeze have been sold on eBay.
The only cost I haven’t figured in is the few rolls of packing tape I have used. I have tried at least half a dozen different brands of packing tape over the years and just recently stumbled upon a brand I really like. This brand works like packing tape should. It sticks where it should and not where it shouldn’t. It is easy to find the end should it come off the dispenser, and it is easy to unstick the end from the rest of the roll when this happens. I am sticking to this brand!
A few people have asked me why I am selling my clutter on eBay and not through the Facebook Marketplace where I would not have to spend money on fees or postage.
There are several reasons why I have chosen eBay to sell my items so far:
- Less Time-Consuming–Because I live less than a mile from the post office and work at home during the day I find it faster to ship items than to spend time arranging to meet someone to pick up my items they bought from a Facebook Buy & Sell group. And after an item is posted eBay takes care of all the rest, I get to sit back and listen for the sound of the cash register that the eBay app makes on my iPhone.
- Less Frustrating–Nothing is more frustrating than thinking you have an item sold on Facebook only to spend time waiting around and they never show.
- Less Extroverted–I don’t need to talk to anyone face to face when I use eBay and that suits my introverted self.
- Larger Market For Niche Items–So far I have been selling items that are not the typical Facebook fare, things like homeschooling curriculum, collectible toys, and designer purses. By placing these items on eBay, I reach millions of people instead of the thousands I would reach on Facebook Marketplace in my smaller city. More eyes mean more chances of selling items that don’t interest the general public as much as like-new leather couches or lightly used infant gear.
These are the four main reasons I am selling my clutter only on eBay right now. I know in time I will have items that will suit other selling platforms such as Facebook better.
I might even hold a yard sale if I can have it in a community where yard sales do well. Our home sits in a neighborhood where yard sales usually flop, but if an opportunity comes up to have one with a friend in an area where yard sales rock–well, then I might join in and sell a whole of a bunch of clutter in one day.
Related Post: How To Successfully Sell Your Items On eBay
A Few Top Sale Items On eBay So Far
Sold For The Most Amount Of Money
Our family has used the Teaching Textbook math curriculum since our eldest hit third grade and he is now twenty-three. Our daughter is currently using their new online curriculum for Geometry since our school laptop died and my former work laptop I gave her to use for school was not compatible with the CD version of Teaching Textbook. At least I thought. Turns out it could have been if I made a few adaptions to it…but I am getting off topic.
Point is, we didn’t need the CD version of Geometry sitting around nor did we need three more years of Teaching Textbook math that somehow didn’t get resold right after we finished it–like it is typically.
The sets sold for between $79 to $89 apiece and since they were able to be shipped by media mail the cost of shipping was relatively low for their weight. After fees and postage, I pocketed between $60 to $70 on each set.
Sold The Fastest
I listed seven of these Who Was titles (cut off the seventh one in the picture when I edited it for this article) as a lot and then went and took a Sunday afternoon nap. When I got up roughly an hour later these were already sold at full price and there were two offers waiting for me, which of course were expired since the item sold at full price. I pocketed $28.58–that is just over $4 a book!
Related Post: 5 Yard Sale Finds Worth Reselling For A Profit On eBay
Totally Surprised Me
I saw other Vintage Fisher Price helicopters like this one selling on eBay for $15.99. As you can see from the picture though, mine was in a bit less than pristine condition. It had pen marks, dirt that would not come out of crevices, and bite marks. I decided to take close-up photos of all the damage and detail it in the description and then price it at $13.99 and see what would happen. It sold in a matter of days for full price and after fees and postage I pocketed $7.39!
Not Worth My Time
Sometimes I get into such a rhythm listing things on eBay during my weekly reselling hour that I don’t pay enough attention to what I will make after fees and postage before I list an item. I listed this book for $4.49 and took an offer for $3.99 after eBay fees, Paypal fees, and shipping I pocketed $0.34. Yep, not even a dollar! Lesson learned: pay attention to what an item will net after fees and postage BEFORE you list it.
Related Post: Why I Am Giving Away the Small Stuff (Had I stuck to my own rule I would have avoided listing, wrapping and then mailing an item for only a $0.34 profit.)
A Few eBay Words Of Wisdom
Choose The Make An Offer Option
I prefer to stick to Buy It Now option and offer free shipping. People have questioned me on why I include the shipping. The answer is that I find it easier. I have an old non-digital postage scale (similar to this one) that it isn’t entirely accurate, so I use it to roughly figure out what something weighs and work out what shipping will cost me and add it into the price.
What I have discovered using the Buy It Now option is that after testing it both with the “make an offer” option and without, the items sell faster when I add the “make an offer” choice–even if I overprice it by a dollar or two and then take an offer that is right at market value.
Lesson learned: The average eBay buyer likes to haggle.
When You Get A Bid, Send Back A Counter Offer
Unless the offer someone makes me is just a dollar or two off the list price I always send back a counter offer and generally the buyer will pay my counter offer price. It seems like the only time that they don’t is when they have made me a really low ball offer and I counter offer with a reasonable offer back.
Always Check What Shipping Will Cost Before You List
Learn from my mistakes, don’t list an item until you have a general idea of how much it will cost to ship it. If you live in the States like I do, take a moment to get a quote from the USPS site on what your item will cost to ship, and make sure you do it for the region furthest from you.
Take Lots Of Pictures
If your items are used, people want to see every part of it so that they feel confident about the shape that the item is in before they buy it. Go ahead and show the best angles but make sure also to show the worst–even if you think they are minor. The stains, the dents, the scratches, the holes, etc. People don’t mind small flaws, but they want to know about them and see them before they buy.
These are the things I have learned so far about selling my family’s clutter. I am sure I will learn more so join my email list using the form at the bottom of this post to get my next Reselling It Challenge update.
Want support and help in your decluttering journey? Join the Snail Pace Clutter Removers Facebook group. Looking for ways to save and earn money? Join the Thrifty People Of Snail Pace Transformations Facebook group.
3 More Posts To Help You Declutter And Earn Money
- eBay Selling Tips
- Tips For Selling in Facebook Buy & Sell Group
- Tips For Getting Top Dollar For The Items You Want To Resell
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