Saturday, March 7, 2009

Selling Kids Clothes

I apologize for being MIA for a few days but this weekend was my local moms of multiples yard sale and of course I volunteered to be "in charge" as my son would say.

Since I finished the other day with buying at sales I thought I'd share a few things I've learned about selling at yard sales. And, Amy at Financially Domestic wrote an article on this too. Go figure :)


This by far is the most asked question I get. What should I price ______ item at? I am very hesitant to give a specific price - if I price your item too high it may not sell; too low and you don't get your money's worth. So, my answer is always in the form of a question: how badly do you want to get rid of it? If you don't care if you take an item home to sell another way - say Craigslist or Ebay then go higher and see what happens. If you just want it gone price it low.

That being said you don't want to make something otherwise what is the point? To get a fair idea for your item you can:

a. Check the current retail price and price your item at least 1/2 off though I would go for more like 2/3 off current retail price (exceptions are items that really don't get use and are in very, very good condition).

b. Check Ebay - is the item selling there? You can also check Craigslist for the same reason - you can find out what other people are asking.

c. Ask yourself what you would pay for it if you were in the market for buying the item used.

Preparing your items to sell.

I am often a slacker in this department but you really do need to make the effort to have your clothes and toys look presentable in order for them to sell. Get out the Clorox wipes and wipe it down :) Wash and iron (to an extent - for $2.00 someone else can do the washing and ironing - that is why they're buying cheap after all!)

Don't use wire hangars if at all possible - it doesn't look good. Find the right hangars for the job especially when it comes to pants hangars - stretching them out over a wire hangar isn't good for the clothes. Be sure to check the sales guidelines here too - some of them want all the hangars facing the same way.

Use a tagging gun if you can - if not, use safety pins but do NOT pin through the clothes - you'll only leave holes - go through a seam or the garment's tag.

Check your items carefully for stains, tears or holes. If there are any, state them on the tag but check the seller policy carefully - some allow it if you are clear about the defect but other sales do not and will reject your item for even the smallest stain.

Make sure your electronic items work whether that's putting new batteries in yourself or just testing them with new batteries to make sure all parts are working. I have brought home some things I thought were great only to find out they don't work or something is wrong. Sure, I only paid a small price but still I paid something and I expect something good in return. You should too and you should be a seller who offers the best.

Make up uniform tags if the sale doesn't offer them then print them on cardstock to make sure your tags are sturdy and attach easily. Consider using a specific color which makes it easier to find your items when you go back for pick-up.

How much will you make?

Of course this depends on what sells but check around to see who is having sales and how much you will make. For example, my larger thrice-annual consignment sale gives first time consignors 50%. To me this isn't a great deal but they do get more exposure so a higher chance to sell your items. (At this particular sale I make 60% back as a return consignor and a volunteer so check your local sales policies)

My moms of multiples sale gives sellers 80% for members and 75% for non-members - a great deal if you have multiples or know someone who does and can hook-up with a multiples yard sale! The only downside is it generally just runs for one day but that one day can still generate a large amount of money with enough sellers and advertisements!

Around here I can also sell with my local MOPS group and make 70%. So check around - there are options in most places. Because not only does the item price matter your return matters.

Once you've finished with your items and drop them off at the appropriate time considering volunteering - sales can always use more help and remember you may get to get in earlier or even make more back on your items.

Be sure to check the policies of any sale you participate in. As a worker there's nothing more frustrating then having a seller who doesn't follow the rules.

Ultimately there's no easier money then selling stuff you already own! No new investment and you can even clean your house out. It's a win-win.


photo by slapjack

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