6 Uncomplicated Ways to Make Extra Cash Through Spring Cleaning


ebayI've become quite familiar with selling goods on eBay.

My first suggestion is to do your research. Search for similar items on eBay (and even Amazon) to see what the going rate is. If you notice your item is "hot" with lots of bids, avoid the "Buy It Now" option, and create an auction with a reasonable starting price.

If you are afraid your item will not get a lot of bids, set a "reserve" price for it. That way, if you want at least $70, but it only reaches a final bid of $55, it will not sell. You then have the option of re-listing it.

Don't forget to take excellent photos, which is crucial to selling. Any blemishes or imperfections should be pointed out.


craigslistBelieve it or not, I've never had a shady experience on Craigslist. I've purchased a variety of items from furniture and appliances to my car on Craigslist! Yes, my car is still in great condition and runs perfectly!

I've also sold items without a hitch.

Posting your stuff is free.

However, be warned: Craigslisters are notorious for being flaky. Joe Schmo may have emailed you a dozen times about your used iPhone, but probably found a better price at the last minute, which is why he stopped responding to your email.

My suggestion is to move quickly on an item if you have interested buyers.

Also, set up a Google phone number and make sure to exchange digits with the interested party. It's a lot more convenient than sending emails, and having to wait for a response (or none at all).



Consignment Shops

consignmentshopsWhile I don't have experience with high-end consignment shops (the kind that requires you to set up an appointment to bring in your goods), I have frequently taken my items at places like Buffalo Exchange, Wasteland, Beacon's Closet, Crossroads Trading Co. and many others.

In my experience, these types of consignment shops only give you about 35% of what they sell the item for. In other words, if they buy your leather jacket and decide to price it at $30, you'll receive $10.50, which is 35% of $30. Some shops may offer you more (about 50% of what they price the item for) if you decide to forgo the cash and take store credit instead.

If you don't have any experience selling at consignment shops, my advice is to only bring your gently worn, name brand items.

Consignment shops are not to be confused with thrift stores; buyers are extremely picky. They also purchase clothing based on the season, so plan accordingly.

If you have a giant bag of your old college shirts and mom jeans, don't bother with consignment shops. Instead, drop them to your local Goodwill and get a tax receipt.



yarsaleThis is a handy little app that focuses on your neighborhood to sell or buy items. After posting the item with a photo and brief description, it asks you if you'd like to post your item on Craigslist, and poof! it does it for you.

The app also has a "haggle" option, so expect customers to bargain. Because of this, price your items a bit higher.

I've posted several items with Yardsale, and I was a bit surprised to see the frequency of low-ball offers.

On the other hand, I've successfully sold a few things here and there.

Just like Craigslist, you actually have to meet in-person, unless you've agreed to ship the item and receive payment through PayPal.

When meeting a buyer, I picked a neutral area; most of the time we'd meet at a Starbucks.

Be sure to reiterate that you take cash only.

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Check with Your Employer, Church, Local Community

bulletinsMany companies have an intranet where employees can post unwanted items, like furniture and appliances.

You can also go the old-fashioned route and print out fliers with pull tabs.

Places you can post these:

  • Your local church
  • Coffee shops
  • Your apartment building (near the mailboxes, if it's allowed.)


Super Garage Sale

garagesaleFor those of you living in suburbia, knock on your neighbors' doors and ask them to participate in a super garage sale! More than likely, your neighbors are eager to get rid of their old stuff too.

Also, a variety of items may attract a higher volume of customers.

Before having the sale, advertise on Craigslist and post signs around your neighborhood to get the word out.

(Image via flickr)