Supplement Your Home-Based Income by “Swapping Up”

At the beginning of the new year the pastor at my church gave a sermon on simplicity. “Do you really need fifteen pairs of shoes?” He asked the congregation. While I’ve never been much of a shoe collector, I do like to horde craft notions and books. I had a room full of glues, paints, brushes, scissors and other odds and ends I never used.

My husband and I decided to start our own “de-cluttering campaign” to kick off the new year. We tackled my craft room, his extensive coat collection and both of our closets that were overflowing with unnecessary things.

After donating a few bags, I also took a few baskets full of clothes, toys, books and craft stuff to several consignment stores in town. Nearly $350 dollars later, I wondered, “could I start a business selling clutter?”

When most home based professionals think about selling clutter, we naturally think about Ebay. Thankfully, Families.com just added a fantastic new blogger who has wonderful tips to share about Ebay. If you are interested in using Ebay as an option for clutter control, enjoy the following blogs;

Where to Find Items to Sell Online
Selling Clothes Online

Call me lazy, but when I wanted to de-clutter, I needed a “quick fix”. I wanted everything out of my home instantly and while I would have made more money, I really wasn’t ready to sort, photograph, describe and ship all of my stuff. Consignment stores are a fantastic option if you want to earn some money from your stuff, with less effort.

I did a bit of research for this post and learned that most consignment stores offer anywhere from 30%-40% of the selling price of your items. Many stores will offer up to 60% of the selling price if you chose to simply trade your items for in-store credit. You could also get an instant 20-30% if you want “quick cash”. They will assess the value on the spot and write you a check.

How can you turn consigning into a home based business? A close friend of mine shared a wonderful tip with me that I will refer to as “swapping up”. She frequents “low end” consignment stores such as the Salvation Army, Goodwill and the Rescue Mission in her town. These are stores that typically sell items for the least amount of money. She looks for sales and bargains in these stores and then resells her goods at “high end” stores which typically only sell designer clothing at higher prices. She only makes a dollar or two per item, however, she does this at least twice per week and “swaps” ten to twenty items per visit. When she finds an exceptionally good bargain, she sells it on Ebay for more profit.

If you are thinking about trying “swapping up” as a way to supplement your home based business, do some research first. The last thing you need is to end up with more clutter that you can’t sell. While “swapping up” is quite different than selling items on Ebay, you’ll want to take time to learn more about desirable items that will net you the most profit.

Have you tried “swapping up”? Have you found success selling items at consignment stores? Tell us about it in the comments section.

In the meantime, take a look at these related “de-clutter” blogs. Remember, Spring is just around the corner!

Spring Cleaning: What to Do After You Purge Your Closets

Throwing a “De-Clutter Party”