Thrifting Stores 101: How to Sell Your Extra Items on EBay

Making Money from Thrifting Stores


Knowing where and how to sell off extra thrifting items can bring in easy spending money, and it is a relatively simple process. When my daughters and I scour the stores, we keep in mind how something might fare when re-sold if we have no use for it. Using the simple tools I've written about previously, we ensure we're not picking up worthless items. In fact, during a recent thrifting trip, my oldest daughter found a vintage, complete in box model rocket kit that re-sells for around $40. Knowing how and where to sell the item brings in extra money for things outside of our normal household budget, such as dinner out, impulse items, and more adventures in thrifting stores. Our first consideration for most items is eBay, and this model is no exception. what to sell on ebay
Where to sell? eBay!
eBay is the premier online auction site, used by millions of sellers and buyers around the world. Opening an account is free, and currently, most of the fees for creating and inserting auctions are waived as well. However, eBay will take a percentage of the final value of a successful auction, usually 10%, so we are sure to factor that into our profit calculations.  What sells on eBay is where the lessons in thrifting come to play.

How to Ship Thrifting Stores Items
Items we sell on eBay tend to ship easily via USPS, and having knowledge of shipping rates is a big part of making money. For example, we picked up the vintage model kit for .99 at Goodwill, and from experience, we know that this size item will fit into a medium flat-rate priority box, which will cost us $12.35 (or a percentage less if buying postage through eBay). Once we've done our research and know that buyers of this type of item prefer priority service and free shipping, we'll factor that in to our profit calculation.

eBay Final Value Fees
It is also important to calculate in the final value fee, which is 10% for most common auctions. Items such as real estate, automobiles, and other unusual auction items have different value tiers. Now that we know what our fee will be for the listing, it's time to add it all together and decide what we want auction style we will list the model as.

Auction Styles
There are two selling styles that we concern ourselves with when wondering what sells on eBay: Traditional auction style, where the item starts at a low price and people bid up the item to what they wish to pay for it, and a Buy It Now (BIN) option, letting us set a fixed price for the item for a buyer to click once and win. Seeing as how we have researched the sales history of our model kit, and know it will sell quickly as a BIN item, we listed as such.

Putting it All Together
Adding together the initial thrifting price of .99, as well as the shipping cost of $12.35, we have a ballpark number we need to list the model kit for in order to make a profit. Knowing we'd like to make around $20 on this item, and there will be a 10% final value fee, we list the BIN price at $39.99. This price is reasonable for a buyer, especially with the free shipping offered, and isn't so off-base with pricing that buyers will pass it up as being too expensive. So, with a little thrifting stores luck, and a bit of knowledge, we'll made a nice profit on an item that is going to make someone very happy.

Happy Thrifting!