Turn Your Clutter into Cash
If there is one universal truth about 21st century consumers it’s that we have a lot more “stuff” than any generation before us. Despite some grassroots efforts to minimize and simplify, the truth is that Americans own far more than they use and have the debt to prove it.
However, as the old saying goes, “one man’s trash is another man’s treasure” which is why it is easy to take all that clutter and unused “stuff” in your home and turn it into something far more useful – cash! In fact, taking a systematic approach to selling your clutter is not only a good way to literally clean house, but it is a solid strategy for starting your $1,000 emergency savings fund or find extra cash for upcoming expenses such as a vacation or holiday shopping.
What’s more, the abundance of online reselling tools and websites makes earning cash from your clutter easier than ever. Check out these strategies that blend online and old fashioned selling techniques that, added together can equal cash in hand and a cleaner living space.
1. The Old-Fashioned Route
Selling off your junk is no new idea. Garage sales, consignment shops, used book stores, and pawn shops have existed for decades and still represent a viable, if labor-intensive way to sell off your clutter. These strategies involve more physical leg work, obviously, and limit your market to the needs and tastes of local buyers, which may mean accepting less money for a particular item that you would otherwise receive – particularly items that some deem collectibles. However, with the right negotiation strategies you can make a lot of money through these selling strategies, and if you understand the secrets to selling success (stay tuned, next week!), garage sales especially represent a great way to get rid of a lot of stuff all at once.
2. Create You Own Listing
Using online classified-style ads through sites like eBay, Craigslist, and even Facebook is the first and most obvious choice for anyone trying to sell off their stuff online. While eBay is a complex environment filled with professional sellers and seasoned buyers, selling basic stuff like baby clothes in large lots is pretty easy and doesn’t require a lot of selling skills. For larger items, posting on Craigslist or to your Facebook network is an easy way to “get the word out” and get stuff taken away from your home with less work and no shipping costs. Finally, depending on which site you use, the process is simple and payment is easy (either cash or PayPal). For people who don’t have the time for old fashioned selling strategies like a Garage Sale, this is the next best and closest thing.
3. Trade in Your Electronics
The niche market for used and broken electronics is far more lucrative online than through old fashioned selling techniques. That is because there are several websites and individuals dedicated to buying back old smartphones, laptops, MP3 players, and more, refurbishing them, and selling them to secondhand markets abroad or on eBay as professional sellers. These sites include NextWorth.com, Gazelle.com, and Glyde.com.
These sites make the process really easy on the seller, asking some basic questions about the item or walking you through the listing process and then sending you all the materials you need to return it to them or ship it to a buyer. From there, you get paid either via PayPal, an online gift card, or a physical check.
4. Get High Prices for High Fashion
If you have grown tired of your designer items or no longer fit into them, selling them through dedicated luxury websites may earn you more money than general marketplace listings. Depending on the item, websites such as ThreadFlip.com, ThreadUP.com, and TheRealReal.com allow sellers to ship in designer items for evaluation and listing.
Offering up to 80-90% back on original pricing, items that meet these websites’ requirements and pass their inspections are paid for up front and then listed by the sites themselves, rather than individual users. Depending on your location and the projected value of your items, you might even qualify for White Glove service, making the process even easier.
5. Get Rid of Gift Cards
Though they technically don’t take up too much “space,” unused gift cards and electronic vouchers from sites like Groupon are just as wasteful as any other type of clutter. Luckily, there are a variety of websites dedicated to reselling these coupons and gift cards, offering you some cash back for the value of those little plastic cards and paper vouchers. Two of the best sites for this are GiftCardGranny.com, an aggregator site for gift card resales, and CoupRecoup.com which specializes in reselling local deals.
These sites are not only a great place to trade in your gift cards, but they are also a place for buyers to receive discounts on them. Used correctly, these sites double as a frugal way to give gifts as well as save money at stores by purchasing cards for less-than-face value.
**What successful strategies have you used to sell your clutter and earn cash?**