Over the past year, I have lived in four places—college apartment, parents house, summer apartment, and finally the home I share with my husband. Trust me, it was stressful. But I made it. The only way that I was able to move so successfully was parting ways with all of the clutter and unnecessary objects that typically get shoved into the boxes that we forget to unpack for weeks or months because we don’t actually need those things.
Decluttering the home is so vital that I will write another blog post on it later, but right now I just want to tell you how to sell all of your stuff! It is amazingly cleansing to part ways with things that you no longer need or cannot see yourself ever using. I find it even better when you can get money from your things as well!
Find your group
Online garage sales are (obviously) an alternative to real garage sales. Garage sales require things like a garage, good weather, populated area, and lots of large items to attract customers. Sometimes all I want to sell is a single piece of jewelry and it’s the middle of winter! This is when I log on Facebook and find my local garage sale page.
If you are not already connected with your local online garage sale, try searching Facebook for the closest city to you plus the words “Virtual sale”, “Garage sale”, or “Buy and Sell”. I am lucky enough to live in an area so densely populated that I belong to five pages where I can buy and sell to my heart’s delight.
Make some cold, hard cash
Over the past few years, I have made more than $400 selling small items on selling pages. I will admit this was a bit of work, but it really allowed me to pare down my stuff and save up! (I used that money to help pay for my Disney Honeymoon)
First, take a picture of what you want to sell. It doesn’t have to be a work of art, but the better your picture the more your item will stand out. Absolute musts–good lighting, no blur, and no distractions in the background.
Upload your photo to your selling page and write a good description. First of all, always make sure you describe your product accurately. NEW means never worn or used. If you are selling clothes, specify NEW WITH TAGS or NEW WITHOUT TAGS. BARELY USED is typically one to three times worn. USED is pretty self explanatory, but if there are any defects, make sure to specify. That means any damage, scratches, or dents. Please, for your own sake, don’t try to sell anything with stains or rips and no one wants your old gym clothes or underwear.
Here’s something I posted and what I wrote:
Make sure your prices are reasonable. Typically, even if the object is NEW or BARELY USED the price someone will buy it for will be around 50% the original price or less.
How to actually sell!
There is a lot to be said about how to keep yourself safe while selling to strangers. The main reason why I don’t use Craigslist to sell is because I am not comfortable dealing with strangers! Facebook groups or pages still allow you to interact with strangers but they have managers who will automatically delete any member who doesn’t conform to the page’s rules. Page rules can vary greatly, so make sure to read through them and conform! These exist to keep you safe and allow a friendly community with your fellow buyers and sellers.
My favorite way to sell is PORCH PICKUP. This is best for items that are valued at less than $10, because it involves leaving the item out on your porch and someone could walk off with it. Personally, I have never had any trouble with people not paying or anyone stealing my items. I have sold so many things this way and it is so nice because I do not have to meet anyone anywhere or even be home at the time I am selling. Simply place your item in an easy-to-locate place on your porch, such as a chair or in front of your door. I typically go the extra step and place the item in a bag with a post it note taped to it with the person’s name on it. Then make sure to tell your buyer where to give you money! You can either place a box outside by the item you are selling or direct them to place the money in your mail box.
Remember NEVER meet a person at their home to sell them something. If you are buying something, try to pickup only in the daytime!
Learn the lingo
- PPU — Porch Pick Up
- PPUO — Porch Pick Up Only (sometimes people will ask you to come to them if you don’t specify only)
- ISO — In Search Of
- OBO — Or Best Offer (Desperate to get rid of something? Tag this and sell it for anything!)
- NWOT — New Without Tags
- NWT — New With Tags
So what are you waiting for? Start selling!