Reselling Your Kids Old Gear: How to maximize your profit and minimize your labor

Reselling Your Kids Old Gear: How to maximize your profit and minimize your labor

There are many ways to unload the toys, gear and clothing that your children have grown out of. Each one comes with its own pluses and minuses.

Consignment Sales

This option is great for your 18 month and under items and all of those monstrous contraptions that are hard to transport. Each clothing item is required to be on a hanger and all items have a price tag printed in the sales tagging system which can be time consuming. However, you are able to move a huge amount of merchandise all in one go. It is a huge timesaver, if you find the right sale.

There are as many yearly consignment sales as there are Starbucks in a 10 mile radius. You don’t want to put your time and items into just any sale. A little research is needed before you select which one you are going to participate in. Post in your local mom’s groups on Facebook and ask for referrals on which sale is the best and why. The things you need to consider are clientele, traffic, the cut the sale management takes, the registration fee, and any ways that management offers for you to maximize your take home percentage. Many moms of multiples clubs offer resale events but you have to be a member to sell.

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A sale I used to participate in was a 70/30 split (they took 30%). If you volunteered for a 4 hour sale or set up shift, they gave you an additional 5% and if you did 2 shifts they gave you 10% (for a total of 80% take home). However I have seen some sales that take 40% and offer no options to earn additional percentages. When you are selling a shirt for $3 you aren’t left with much after they take their 40%, so do your research. Most sales offer the option of having your items included in their 50% off sale day (otherwise they are still offered at full price on that day) as well as the option to donate any items remaining. You are able to make the choice for each individual item. Think on it carefully. The 50% off day is a way to maximize your take home profit, but you need to think about what your minimum price is for each item.

Consignment Stores

These stores are great for those who do not have time for the other options. You simply drop your items off to be sifted through and priced and return when they are done. It will mostly likely take you a total of 15 minutes. The downside of this option is that you will be getting only the smallest fraction of the value of the item and they won’t take all of your stuff. Many individual clothing items you will only get 75 cents to $1 and about 30% of the amount you paid for larger items like strollers, high chairs and jumperoos. But if you just have a laundry basket or two full of clothes, this would be the more convenient route. It is a great last resort before donating. Many stores allow you to choose store credit for your items which sometime gives you a higher dollar amount than cash. Others will allow you to trade straight across; avoiding paying tax on your new purchase up to the amount of your trade.

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Facebook Sale Groups

These are a fantastic way to sell larger furniture items like gliders, high chairs, swings, cribs etc. You simply join groups on Facebook for your area and post your items for sale. Only members of the group can see your posts. They will respond and you both set up a time and place to meet. This option is great because there isn’t a middle man there to take a percentage. You get exactly what you ask for the item. You are also able to price your items higher than you would at a consignment sale. I normally offer items here at 50% of what I paid for them if they are in great condition or 80% if they are still new. The online group gives you free and quick access to a large pool of people who are interested in the items that you are selling. The most important thing is to not have them meet you at your home. It may seem very safe since they are buying baby items and have a profile and picture attached, but appearances can be deceiving. Always meet in a public place and/or parking lot during the daylight hours.

Craigslist

When I strike out with the Facebook buy/sale/trade groups I always turn to Craigslist. Like the Facebook groups, it gives you access to wide net of people and there is no middle man looking to take a percentage. The only drawback is that people on this site can oftentimes be flaky and not show up for appointment times or when they do show up they can then try and knock down the agreed upon price. This site is however really great for those niche items that only a small pool of people would be interested in like a tandem twin umbrella stroller or that boutique crib. Or if you wish to sell your kid clothes in large lots, post a set price for a certain amount: all or nothing. Again, always meet in a public place and/or parking lot during the daylight hours.

Garage-Sale

Garage Sale

With this type you are more likely to move all of your merchandise at once. There are people in my area who come around with pick-up trucks and buy garage sales as a whole for a discounted price, most likely for the resale market. If that is not a common occurrence in your area think about combining with a few other families (using colored stickers to differentiate). This way you will have help manning the sales floor. You will need to spend the same amount of time preparing and pricing items that you would with a consignment sale, but the plus side is that you get to keep all of your earnings. Advertise on Craigslist in the garage sale section with pictures and on all of the Facebook buy/sale/trade groups. This will increase your viewership. If you live in a neighborhood that has a newsletter they will often allow you to post a notice in the classified section as well. Whatever stock you have left you can take to a consignment store the following day to see if there is anything that they might want. After that, donate your remaining items to a thrift store for a nice tax deduction.

One of the biggest hurdles with reselling your old gear, and why many choose to donate instead, is labor and pricing. If you price it too high it won’t sell, if you price it too low you are undercutting yourself. A great website with detailed a detailed and comprehensive pricing guide can be found here. This guide makes what may have felt like a daunting task feel manageable and easy. Children are always in the need of new clothes and or age appropriate toys, big kid beds, games, and craft items. Reselling your children’s old gear and clothing items is a great way to make some extra money for whatever comes next.

destiny effertzDestiny Effertz is a stay at home mom to 3 boys under 5. Prior to having children she worked as a paralegal in a large civil litigation firm. Now she uses those research and organizational skills formulating new pie recipes and planning family vacations.

 

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