Bookmark these apps for buying and selling unwanted items.
When it comes to saving money and paying down debt, it's key to find areas in your budget to meet these financial goals. More often, the fastest way to improving your financial situation is to increase your income. However, this is often easier said than done, especially if landing a higher paying job or a promotion are not realistic options. And though side hustles are a great way to supplement your income, you can begin boosting your cash flow by simply looking around your home for items you no longer need or use. To get you started, here are eight free apps that make selling and buying items online a cinch.
Whether you want to sell an old smartphone or a used car, you can do it all through the LetGo app. LetGo allows consumers to buy and sell just about anything, with categories ranging from electronics to sporting goods to cars. LetGo makes it a breeze to connect with buyers through the chat feature in the app so there's no need to give out personal contact information. Plus, to optimize safety, you can check users' profiles to see if they're verified and if they have positive reviews before moving forward with a sale. Transactions are made in person, so it's best to meet in a public place during the day and bring a friend along to ensure safety.
If you already have a Facebook account and app installed on your phone, selling new and used items is a snap through Marketplace, the platform's digital marketplace for buying, selling and discovering items. Posting an item for sale is a breeze. After you upload a picture of the item and other details on your phone, the interface will automatically choose a category and prompt a price-range suggestion. You can sell to buyers locally by coordinating in-person transactions or opt to ship to people who live outside of driving distance, depending on your preference. An added bonus to using Facebook Marketplace is that you'll feel more confident in who you are dealing with since you can view a potential buyer's Facebook profile.
Mobile apps like Poshmark can help you sell gently used clothing and accessories to consumers looking to save on secondhand fashion. Simply create a profile, then begin posting items to sell on your account. Poshmark takes a flat fee of $2.95 for sales under $15, but ups their commission for larger sales to 20 percent. Earnings are deposited into your account and you can withdraw money any time directly from the app via a direct deposit or by requesting a check. Becky Beach, the blogger behind the finance and lifestyle site MomBeach.com who uses the app often, suggests taking high-quality pictures of each item to attract more buyers. Place the item against a white poster board to make it pop, she says.
Selling luxury goods through consignment is much more seamless thanks to sites like The RealReal that specialize in reselling high-end, designer brands. As with most consigners, The RealReal takes a cut of the sale; however, you can earn up to 85 percent of the sale price for your items. Though you can sell many of your designer goods through other sites, the benefit with using The RealReal is that you don't have to do any of the work -- they take pictures of your merchandise, set prices, monitor each sale and ship goods to buyers. Michelle Madhok, online shopping expert and founder of SheFinds.com, says it's important to adhere to the list of brands they accept and ensure everything is clean, inside and out.
On the Mercari app, you can sell just about anything -- from sporting equipment to beauty goods to baby gear -- without the worry of meeting with potential buyers in person. "I think of it like Craigslist, but no meet ups," says Susan Towers, founding partner at Forerunner PR. All sales are shipped to buyers so there is no face-to-face interaction required. Plus, Mercari takes the headache out of shipping sold goods by offering a pack-and-ship partnership with UPS. If you bring your sold item to a local UPS store, an associate will pack and ship it for you, taking the hassle out of finding the right-sized box and creating a shipping label.
Decluttr makes it easy to get cash for your unwanted tech items, from cellphones to tablets to video games, DVDs and more, without the hassle of dealing with buyers or waiting for an auction to close. You'll get an instant price estimate upon inputting the item's bar code -- or use the in-app bar code scanner -- guaranteeing this fee for 28 days. Another benefit of using this app is that shipping is free when you select the UPS option. Money for your device is sent the day after Decluttr receives your tech goods through either a direct deposit, PayPal or check, making it a fast transaction process.
This peer-to-peer marketplace app uses your phone's GPS to reach buyers in your area. Buyers can make you an offer or reach out about listing details through the in-app chat feature. When it's time to make a deal, use the safe exchange area location tool to pinpoint nearby police stations for transactions. Otherwise, 5miles also offers an online payment and shipping option. Darcy Segura, a buyer and reseller of vintage furniture, home decor and more through The Eclectic Den, a virtual storefront on 5miles, appreciates the app's video-enabled listing feature. "Video enables me to showcase furniture pieces in a way that photos just don't do justice. It really helps make my listings come alive," she says.
Chairish is an online marketplace for home decorating and design where you can sell vintage decor, furniture, home accessories and art. The app enables you to arrange an in-person pickup, and can help you coordinate shipments for sellers, which can be a complicated process when dealing with large and heavy or fragile pieces. There's a minimum listing price of $25 and payments are issued via PayPal following delivery and the company's 48-hour return period. You can confirm that payment is being processed when an item is flagged as delivered in the sold items tab of the Chairish dashboard.
To recap, here are the best apps to buy and sell used items:
-- Facebook Marketplace.
-- The RealReal.
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