According to Gumtree’s Second Hand Economy Report, the average person has 23 unwanted items in their home, while one in five Aussies said they have more than 40 things they no longer want.
So it’s official. We’ve all got too much stuff and most of it is completely unnecessary.
Whether you’re trying to make some quick cash or just doing a spring clean, you might be surprised at how much your unwanted stuff is worth. Here’s how cash in on your clutter.
It might seem old-school, but garage sales can be the easiest, and most time and effort-effective way to get rid of your stuff. If it’s in your front yard, it means you don’t need to move your things very far, so it’s perfect for big items like furniture. And, unlike the other options, don’t need to pay to sell it! All it costs is your time.
If you live on a busy street, great. If not, see if you can get together with a few friends and choose the best location to do it.
Create some great signs, posters, and ads in the local area, as well as on Facebook to help get the word out. Look up the second-hand value of the things you’re selling to make sure you’re not over or undercharging.
Don’t forget to have a rain-alternative option and if you’re selling your parents’ or siblings’ stuff, get their permission. There’s nothing worse than Mum arriving home to see strangers hauling her heirloom table into their car.
There are marketplaces for just about anything online. Whether it’s an unused phone (because who doesn’t love an upgrade?), once-used new guitar or surfboard or unworn or “vintage” clothes, there are endless options.
Gumtree and eBay are top places to start, although eBay does charge a seller fee. Gumtree is great, but be prepared for lots of questions and calls about your item. As an example, a 16GB iPhone 4S in decent condition can still fetch around $200 on Gumtree at the moment, so there’s definitely demand.
Look for online marketplaces that won’t charge fees per sale or penalise you if it doesn’t sell. Another handy online alternative is Facebook. Put up some pictures of your big-ticket items and ask around. You’ll be surprised at who’s interested in turning your trash into their treasure.
A Market Stall
Markets are a great day out and can earn you hundreds, but be warned: they are hard work. You’ll have to get everything you’re selling in order and set up early on Saturday or Sunday morning, usually before 6am.
The cost of running a market stall varies greatly depending on where and what you’re selling. It’s also cheaper if you bring your own marquee and tables, so do this if you can.
Markets can also be great if you’ve got an emotional attachment to items (not uncommon) and want to see them go to a good home, rather than an unknown buyer online.
Be prepared to bargain with the best of them, and don’t be shy when it comes to talking your stuff up; sometimes people just need a confident seller to convince them to buy.
This one should be treated with caution. Pawn shops need to make a profit so probably won’t offer you the best deal you can get. If you’re desperate and lazy, they’re a good option for big items like musical instruments or electronics or even jewellery.
Just make sure you know the value of what you’re selling and be firm with how much you’re willing to accept. Otherwise, it’s better to take the time and effort to sell it yourself.
Main pic: Chris Parker via Flickr.