If you’ve finally gotten around to cleaning out your closets, you might be wondering how you’re going to make the leap and start selling all that old stuff for cash. If the idea of selling your stuff online makes you cringe, or worse, procrastinate, there is a more conventional way to trade in goods for money.
A consignment store/shop is a locally-owned business that sells your goods for you in exchange for a share of the profits. You may also have to pay a small separate fee as compensation for their helping you sell. In consignment, you retain full ownership of the item until it sells, if it sells. If it doesn’t sell, the store will simply give the item right back to you (you will have to come back and pick it up).
The consignment store will inform you how long they will try to sell your items for – generally a 30-, 60-, or 90-day period. Because of these terms, and the generally low-volume traffic local consignment stores get, it may take a month or two to sell your items. However, since these shops have less inventory, your item will have less competition than it would say, online.
If you’re looking for a quicker way to make money, you can Google your area for local consignment sales. The idea of consignment is the same, but a consignment sale is a high-traffic event and since it’s most commonly held over a weekend, your goods will be held for less time. Because of the short time frame, you have an opportunity to see a profit much faster than if you took your goods to a consignment store. However, you’ll have more competition from other vendors –think piles and piles of clothing, strollers, books, etc. – and there is a $10-$15 entry fee.
Pawn shops work differently than consignment. At a pawnshop, you sell your items upfront, transferring ownership of them, and the pawn shop will then resell the items for a profit. Usually a pawnshop will pay you 50% of what they think the item will sell for, so it’s similar to a consignment shop in that way. The nice thing about pawnshops is that you get an immediate pay out.
Things To Consider When Trying To Make Money
The Things You’re Trying To Sell – Consignment stores sell things on the cheap, which is great news for the buyer, but not as great if you’re the seller. You’ll only really make a profit if you have brand name, good-condition clothes, antique furniture, or other large items that might sell in-store for $30 or more. Bicycles, strollers, or expensive toys also fit that bill. If you know your items are each worth at least $30, and you’re making 50% of the profit, you can walk away with at least $15 per item. More worth your time.
The Terms of the Consignment Deal – All consignment stores are different in the way they sell items. Make sure you know long the store will keep your item, and if they will discount your item midway through the sell-period. For example, a consignment store might sell your bicycle for $30 for the first 30 days of your 60-day cycle, but if it doesn’t sell within the first month, the store may lower the price of your bicycle to $15. That means you’re only walking away with $7.50 after two months. So make sure you know the terms of the consignment, particularly if there are separate fees/entry fees involved.
How Soon You Want the Money – Pawnshops may be your best bet if you’re looking for upfront cash.
Consignment stores and pawnshops are really great secondhand retail options, but they’re not the only ones out there. Amazon and Ebay are neat, but you can likely do just as well with one of the more traditional trade-in methods above. So if you’re not a technical whiz, but you still want cash for those old things lying around your house, don’t worry! There’s still hope!