If you took the advice of my last article and did a little winter cleaning, you could be looking to sell some unused items. Think about all the clothes, shoes, computers, furniture, toys, tools, books and other items eating up more space year after year. They probably have value for someone; you’ll value the extra room and less clutter in your life.
The trouble is, sites like Craigslist have really changed the game of reselling. So what should you sell — and where?
Here are a few of my favorite ways to add value by subtracting your stuff:
Sell on consignment. Some consignment shops may buy your items outright or display them for you and split the sales price when someone buys. It’s less work than a garage sale, but you earn less. Try Children’s Orchard ( http://childrensorchard.com), Plato’s Closet ( http://www.platoscloset.com), and My Sister’s Closet ( http://www.mysisterscloset.com), for clothing. Saver’s is another good option for furniture and furnishings too, as is Great Finds ( http://www.greatfindsfurnitureconsignment.com/default.html
Sell to the masses
. You’ve heard me say it before: Never underestimate what some people will buy on Craigslist or eBay. I know people who are on one or both sites every day. Sure, you’ll have to deal with some phone calls, emails and texts, and maybe a little haggling, but it can be a lot of fun – and more cash than you had yesterday. If you go this route, practice extra safety. Consider meeting people in well-lit public places or with another person vs. at your home.
Where else but Facebook? Let’s face it, selling to strangers may not be for everyone. Some people feel safer selling to friends, or friends of friends, through Facebook. The Marketplace app makes it easy ( http://www.ehow.com/how_4525294_sell-item-facebook.html
Donate and deduct. Truth be told, outside of the occasional garage sale, I don’t sell a whole lot of stuff. Personally, I’d rather donate what I can to charity or give it away to friends and family. Clothes, shoes and toys are easy to drop off at a local Goodwill ( http://www.goodwill.org) location, or a place like Cross-Lines Community Outreach ( http://www.cross-lines.org) or City Union Mission ( http://www.cityunionmission.org
). Keep your receipt for tax time, but to me the value of giving lasts much longer.
However you choose to go about it, do yourself a favor and do a little de-hoarding in your home. Know the pros and cons of each selling channel and go with what works for that particular item. Trust me, whatever you get in return is better than what you started with, and a great way to start the New Year.
Kat's Money Corner is posted on Dollars Sense every Tuesday. Kat Hnatyshyn, when not blogging or caring for her little one, is a manager with CommunityAmerica Credit Union. For more financial chatter, click http://twitter.com/savinmavens.