Treasure hunting, that’s what my family calls it.
It’s not for everyone, I know that. My husband hates it.
I admit that I’m awful at negotiating. If they say they want two dollars, I’m highly unlikely to barter them down. If two dollars is out of my range, I’ll just leave it before asking for less. I don’t know why, it’s just one of those things for me. I have thrift envy for those who are good at it. I think I need a negotiating mentor.
Like everyone who enjoys it, I’ve made some awesome purchases along the way, as well as some that I should have passed by. I’ve also passed by a few and regretted not making the purchase.
For those of us who love it, what is the motivation?
For me, I love finding a great deal. I love seeing something just like the one I grew up with. My kids like going, so it’s a fun way to spend time with them while teaching them how to bargain hunt.
But, how about making some extra money treasure hunting? It is possible, I’ve done it and I’ve seen it done.
The question becomes, where do you sell the goods? It’s actually easy.
I believe the answer is that you don’t put all your eggs in one basket. Meaning, try different avenues.
Craigslist works well for larger items that can be picked up locally. Think about it, how many times have you passed by that awesome antique end table for $5 because what are you really going to do with it? How about sell it for $20-$25 on Craigslist? That’s a great profit. The catch is that you need somewhere to store bigger items.
My experience is that Ebay is great for selling toys, clothing, video games, and some collectibles. You have to be prepared for listing fees as well as paypal fees when you make a sale.
Etsy is my favorite for selling unique vintage items. It’s free to own an Etsy shop, and only 20 cents per listing plus paypal fees.My mother has an etsy shop, Vintage Volume, that is strictly for vintage goodies. For example, remember these vintage 70’s Nestle world globe Irish coffee glasses from a treasure hunt earlier this year?
You can find them for sale in her vintage shop listed HERE.
With all of these options, you have to calculate your time shopping, taking pics, listing, as well as packing and shipping items sold online. With a little effort, it can definitely be worth your while.
Find a niche. What are you good at spotting? Great clothing, vintage patterns, old Fisher Price toys? Do a little homework, find out what sells. My mother has made a ton buying and selling cowboy boots. Random, I know, but it works! I personally like to find childrens costumes throughout the year and list them around Halloween on Ebay. I’ve made a pretty good bit of cash doing so.
Spring is a great time of year for yard sales. I recently found this website, YardSaleTreasureMap.com where you enter your zip code, and it searches all the local sales listed on Craiglist, and maps them out for you.
The bottom line is, whatever your motivation is, do it because it makes you happy!