Since you’re a couponer, saving money probably comes second nature to you. You find deals at yard sales, at the store and virtually everywhere you go. One thing you might want to think about is turning your nose for a good deal into a way to land some extra cash. By “flipping” items on Craigslist, you can put your skills to work at making extra money for your household.
A major advantage to selling on Craigslist.com is that there are no fees. You can post your items for free, and buyers may be looking for the specific item you’re selling. You can only list in specific cities, though. Craigslist is a platform for locals to connect with one another to buy and sell goods and services. If you log in at Craigslist, you have to choose a specific city, which should be where you live. Buyers may want to check out items first before making a purchase, and you don’t want to travel far to meet them and make a sale.
Other selling sites like EBay either charge fees for you to auction your items, or aren’t popular enough to attract buyers. The listing process can also be complicated. It’s easy to post items on Craigslist. Type in the title, the price and a description, and then add a photo, and you’re done. You can also edit the post when you need to.
Cheap yard sale furniture can net you a nice profit if you put a little work into it. For example, a worn-out wooden desk or nightstand can be spruced up if you sand it and refinish it with a nice stain. After putting a little effort in, a piece of furniture that you bought for $10 to $20 can be flipped for 10 times that amount. Remember to put “like new” condition in your description of the item. If you have skills at reupholstering fabric, or touching up and repairing leather, you can expand the types of furniture that you can fix up and sell for a profit.
Flipping Sporting Goods
A good rule of thumb with sporting goods is to buy items during the off-season, and then list them on Craigslist just before the season starts. Look for skis at yard sales in the summertime, for example, or purchase golf clubs in the winter that you find on Craigslist or other sites for a cheap price. Touch them up if necessary, and then list the skis in late fall, or the golf clubs in early spring.
People will sometimes sell clothing and other gear for sports that their children have outgrown. Look for brand name items at yard sales that will be in demand once the school year starts. Make sure you clean them up before trying to sell them, because people are much less likely to buy something if it’s dirty (think football gear, cleats, etc.).
Exercise equipment is another category of sporting goods you can flip. You’ll sometimes find great deals on lightly used equipment at the start of the year. People get an exercise bike for Christmas, for example, and then they give up on their New Year’s resolution to get fit by early February. When you find a good deal, there’s no reason you can’t turn right around and sell it on Craigslist.
Gear for hunting is another example. You might find a bow and arrows at a yard sale that have only been used once, and then the owner put them in storage until finally deciding to get rid of them for cheap. Once again, timing comes into play. Figure out when hunting season is in your area, and list the items a month or less prior to it. If people can find like new items at 30 to 40 percent off the retail price, you’re likely to make a quick sale.
Flipping High Quality Freebies
If you’ve been couponing long enough, you know how to find some of the occasional deals on designer items that will make them free or extremely cheap. For example, one designer outlet has had a coupon code for $25 off any purchase through the summer of 2011. Many times you’ll find items on its daily sales for $25 or less, so you only have to pay shipping for the item. Taking advantage of deals like that can allow you to purchase more expensive items, which you can turn around and flip on Craigslist. Look for deals like that, or crazy one-day sales, and you can turn those “purchases” into some quick cash.
The best way to get started is to jump right in. List a few items first to get a few sales under your belt and to learn the quirks of selling items in your local area on Craigslist. Make improvements after each sale to increase your rate of success.
What have you “flipped” on Craigslist!?