When stores that sell nothing more than boxes, bins, and containers can turn a profit, it’s time for people to admit that we all have too much stuff. Over a lifetime or in just a few years, the average person accumulates so many things that aren’t needed or are never used.
Fortunately, there are several simple options for getting rid of those unused items while also turning a tidy profit. A cluttered house is hard to keep clean, and most people could benefit from a sweep of old items that aren’t used anymore.
Consider one of the following projects as your ticket to less clutter and more cash.
1. Online Auctions
Online auctions are dominated by eBay; however, other options also exist. Using online auctions to sell items is valuable because it allows the buyer to set the price through bids, so there’s very little research required to price certain items.
All it takes is a quick search on an auction site to see the prices of comparable items to figure out a price and get an item sold. There’s no human interaction with this method either, which may be preferable for certain sellers.
2. Consignment Stores
Taking items like clothing, antiques, or toys to consignment stores is a terrific idea because it’s like having your own store without having to go through the trouble of opening your own establishment.
All you have to do is bring your items to the consignment store and the staff will take care of the rest. Another option is also to locate a local jewelry store, where you can sell used items for cash — or consignment as well. As far as simplicity is concerned, consignment is one of the easiest. Most consignment stores feature a particular type of items, like antiques or clothing so you can find one that matches what you have to sell.
3. Yard and Garage Sales
This option is best for anyone who doesn’t want to travel with their unused stuff and wants to get rid of it as fast as possible. A yard or garage sale tends to be the least expensive option for making money since it usually takes nothing more than a $2 advertisement in the local paper to pay for the event.
If you don’t have enough stuff to create your own garage sale, consider teaming up with a friend or a few neighbors. You can each help one another keep an eye on the merchandise as well as encourage visitors with an excitingly big sale.
Making money with donations seems counterintuitive, but it may be the route to go if you have some pricey objects you’d like to sell and are concerned about your taxes. Consider donating those items instead and getting a healthy tax write-off.
Items like an old car can be donated to charitable organizations. If you donate items worth enough money, you can take itemized deductions on your taxes, which may reduce your tax bill. It might not feel like you’re “making money,” but your wallet will thank you at tax time.
It might be hard to let go of that remote control car you used to love a decade ago or those high heels you thought were awesome in the 90s, but don’t let sentimental attachment to your old stuff keep you from making some easy money. Cleaning out your home and clutter is a refreshing way to get a few more dollars in the bank.
What other tips do you have to get rid of that clutter this weekend?
Robert Farrington is America’s Millennial Money Expert® and America’s Student Loan Debt Expert™, and the founder of The College Investor, a personal finance site dedicated to helping millennials escape student loan debt to start investing and building wealth for the future. You can learn more about him on the About Page, or on his personal site RobertFarrington.com.
He regularly writes about investing, student loan debt, and general personal finance topics geared towards anyone wanting to earn more, get out of debt, and start building wealth for the future.
He has been quoted in major publications including the New York Times, Washington Post, Fox, ABC, NBC, and more. He is also a regular contributor to Forbes.