Wednesday, August 20, 2014

A-LISTERS

If you were wondering, yes, I do indeed practice what I preach.  On a recent otherwise dull Saturday afternoon, as Joe zipped around town doing things city people do on Saturdays (dry cleaning drop-off, drug store pick ups, booze purchases) I took inventory of the "stuff" that occupies every crack and crevice of our humble abode.  When Joe got home I met him at the door with a steno pad, magic marker and colored stickers.  I told him to walk through the house and tell me everything I was allowed to sell, toss, donate or give away.  I use the word "allowed" loosely, of course, because I would've done it anyway, but to have Joe's blessing made the end result a more pleasurable experience.  Here's the key to moving stuff you don't want OUT OF YOUR HOUSE…price it well!  I've met far too many people who want to sell grandmas favorite chair at a garage sale or on Craigs list for $1,000.  Aint gonna happen, folks!  Ebay, too, can be tricky AND they charge you for listings whether they sell or not.  After two weeks of listing items on Craigs List, I must say I've had a fun experience and feel much lighter after getting rid of TONS of "stuff."  Now I'm sure I'd meet a different crowd of people if we were living on the corner of Crack and Meth, but in our neck of the woods part of the fun was meeting cool people…from a chef at a local hip hot spot to organic farmers, fun newlyweds to a young couple with adorable children, this process has not only been fruitful it's been like having a party where people take your stuff as they walk out the door.  HUMMMM…NOW THERE'S AN IDEA!  If you're looking around your house thinking OH HELL, I GOTTA SELL, here are a few tips I've learned on my journey from clutter to counting dinero! (and, yes, of all the things I've listed that have flown out our door, I'm still waiting to sell the darn snow blower we purchased a few years ago and used ONCE!)
EBAY: Ebay is great if you are a tad computer savvy, have time to sell and are listing items that are smaller in scale.  I've found it best to sell on ebay during the winter months when there's nothing else to do.  Listing, waiting, packaging, heading to the post office…kind of tedious, but YES you can make money.  For larger items I'd suggest using ebay LOCAL, where people have to come to you.
CRAIGS LIST: For smaller items I always meet people in public places to make the transaction.  I typically only sell larger items on craigslist when we are moving OR I make sure people coming know I have a dog that will kill them if they try anything!  The key to craigslist is to make your headline catchy, add good photos (I think they allow up to 25 for FREE) and screen people before you let them in your door.
CONSIGNMENT:  Even in our fairly rural neck of the woods many consignment stores will pick items up for FREE, while charging you a fee when the item sells.  Again, if you aren't pressed for cash, this is a great option.
SALVATION ARMY/DONATIONS: Again, even in our area we have several charities that will come to us, pick up the items and take them away.  The only annoying thing I've noticed is they no longer take beds or ANYTHING with fabric (sofas, chairs, etc.)