First Person: Benefits of Resale and Consignment Selling

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There's just something about resale and consignment selling that I find interesting…almost thrilling. I mean, it certainly isn't that I'm accumulating a vast fortune by doing it or even making a lot of money. It's more like I make $100 bucks every so often; but even then, it's a process I enjoy.

Over the years, I've learned a lot about the art of resale and consignment selling, and there are certain aspects of the process that I find stick out to me as the main benefits to making money in this way.


I like it when I can just walk in, dump my stuff off at a consignment or resale shop and let someone else do the work of marketing and selling it for me. With someone doing the work for me, I don't have to deal with taking the time to market and sell the items, package and possible mail the stuff to the buyer, or deal with pushy or needy buyers. Plus, this way, I can focus my time on other profitable matters. It's kind of like hiring an employee without having to go through the interview process or pay the employment taxes or health benefits.

Higher Returns than Donating

But even with the convenience factor thrown in, the thought of having to get my unwanted items collected, cleaned up for sale, and haul them in to a place of resale -- or getting them all priced and ready for a garage sale -- can sometimes sound exhausting. Just tossing them all into bags or boxes and setting them out on the doorstep to be collected by the veterans or Salvation Army sounds much easier. And then I could take a deduction on my taxes for the charitable donation. However, it's at this time I need to remember the money we've made from garage sales. While I could take up to a $500 deduction on my taxes, which at a 20 percent tax rate could save me up to $100, we've had garage sales in which we've made over $500, and consigning just two items recently made us about $100, so that little extra effort can pay off.


There are so many resale and consignment options these days. Beyond the typical garage sale or consignment shop, many such stores are specialized toward a more specific type of sale. We've made use of a variety of such options to make some money from our unwanted or unneeded stuff. We made hundreds of dollars from doing things like reselling our first child's baby stuff, selling books and DVDs and CDs at Half Price Books, and consigning home furnishing like a chandelier and large mirror at our local consignment store.

A couple things that we've learned over the years, is that there is a wide market for reselling all sorts of stuff. However, to save us time and effort, as well as make us more money, we typically look up what sorts of items the particular resale option is looking for since such items can change with inventory needs, sales trends, and season. We've also learned to clean up our items and ensure that they are operable before hauling them in to be sold, as many resellers don't want to have to clean or repair such items and may charge a fee if they have to.

It's a Learning Process

The more I sell stuff through various resale and consignment options, the more I learn and feel comfortable with the process. Understanding types of fees -- listing, commission, cleaning, shipping, etc. -- knowing what sorts of things sell fast and what tends to linger on the market, whether to sell online or in a physical setting, what is worth trying to sell and what's not, and learning the locations of various resale and consignment stores have all taken time. However, the more I learn the more proficient I am at the process and the better I am at making decisions that can earn me money or at least help me recoup some of the money I've spent on certain possessions.

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The author is not a licensed financial professional. The information provided in this article is for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal or financial advice. Any action taken by the reader due to the information provided in this article is solely at the reader's discretion.


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