Getting rid of stuff-- eBay, Freecycle, Goodwill? - Mothering Forums

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Old 12-20-2005, 11:32 PM - Thread Starter
 
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When you get rid of stuff, how do you decide what to do with it? What criteria do you use for getting stuff out of your house and deciding whether you'll sell it, give it away, or lend it to someone?

I could probably stand to get rid of some stuff around here, but I'm hesitant to do it because we desperately need money and anything that I could possibly sell, I'd rather sell than give away... but I"m not good at selling things on eBay or the Trading Post, and I haven't had much luck with consignment stores, so I'm thinking maybe I should just pass it on. I don't know, though, it's really hard to let go of something that might help to buy shelves or storage space or food or anything useful, kwim?

Rynna, Mama to Bean (8), Boobah (6), Bella (4) and Bear (2)
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Old 12-20-2005, 11:46 PM
 
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I do a search for ended auctions on eBay when I want to sell something. That way you can see how much it usually sells for and if it's worth listing. After the holidays I'm going to sell some of my old records on there. I was looking them up a couple weeks ago and some of them are worth a little. I need to drag them up from the cellar though, ugh.
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Old 12-21-2005, 01:59 AM
 
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I use eBay and sometimes I use the TP here if I need to get rid of it quickly or don't feel like taking the time to list it on eBay and wait for the auction to end.

Good Luck!
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Old 12-21-2005, 03:20 AM
 
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I think you have to decide how much an item would go for in order for it to be worth the time of posting it. eBay can be a pain. It takes a lot of time to post stuff and mail it.

If you're only going to get a few bucks, I say use freecycle or donate it.
Consignment is always a good option, too.
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Old 12-21-2005, 03:54 AM - Thread Starter
 
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But a few bucks would make it worthwhile to me... if I could be assured of getting it. Hence my low prices on Trading Post listings; if I could get $1-10 for each item on my list, I'd probably be tickled pink, but I rarely (if ever) sell anything, and I never know why the things that sell sell and the things that don't, don't. KWIM?

Rynna, Mama to Bean (8), Boobah (6), Bella (4) and Bear (2)
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Old 12-21-2005, 10:13 AM
 
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I've had fun and good luck with barter groups where you list what you have and what you would like to trade it for. Postage is the only expense and you can have the fun of receiving mail with goodies. This has been great for clothing, craft supplies, bath products, toys, books and little kitchen things as well as fun stuff.
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Old 12-21-2005, 02:01 PM
 
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I just sold some things on eBay and, I have to say, I don't think it's worth it unless the item will bring at least $10-20. By the time you list it, do all the "virtual paperwork", find packing materials, take it to the post office, etc., plus pay listing fees and PayPal fees, you have anything less is hardly worth it. If you do decide to put some things on eBay, I find it easier to do several listings at once- at least you can probably combine trips to the P.O. If you have books and CDs, I have had good luck selling things on Half.com, which is pretty painless compared to eBay. My local moms' group has a really active buy-sell-trade list- do you have Craig's List or something similar in your area? Once you get rid of the "big ticket items" through these channels, maybe you can have a yard sale, then donate anything that's left over. By that time, I think you can be pretty comfortable that anything left doesn't have much monetary value. I also have trouble letting things go, but I keep telling myself:

- sometimes you have to take a big step to have a fresh start
- these things might really help someone else
- you have to make room in your life for new opportunities and things to enter

Good luck!
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Old 12-21-2005, 02:20 PM
 
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I agree eBay is not worth it for small value items unless you have quite a few things and can consolidate your time spent on packaging and running to the PO. I tend to list on eBay in waves, and will have both some high-value and low-value auctions going at the same time.

If you have a lot of little household stuff you might just collect it in a box and hold a yard sale in spring. We held a yard sale and made $200 for a lot of little things that were hardly even goodwill-worthy. That's not a ton of money but still there's not too many things you can put 4-6 hours into and get $200 out of, kwim? We sold things like scented candles, unused sample size toiletries, etc...stuff I really thought no one would buy, but I put 25-cent stickers on them and people bought them.

I think freecycle is good for bulky things that would be a pain to take to a thrift store. OTOH if you have a lot of little things it's easier to put them in one bag and drop them off at Goodwill than to list them all on freecycle separately.

Good luck! Sometimes I give away things that could be sold because I just need to get the item out of my life ASAP and I have to be realistic about when I will get around to eBay.
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Old 12-23-2005, 08:19 AM
 
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I run a clothing drive for modest attire(for muslim women... no one else seems interested) so whatever I have of that sort of stuff. I just keep. I advertise for low-income ppl on freecycle to come get stuff and community groups. My goal is to have a resale shop that also gives vouchers for free items.

If it is not something I can use for the clothing drive such as used undergarments, shirts or sweaters with small holes or bleach stains or men's clothing. I take them to the homeless ppl on the ST. Toronto has tons of homeless ppl so if I see one with out socks/gloves/ or a decent shirt I stop and ask them if they want one. If for some reason that is not possible, then I give them to a shelter, but alot of ppl have trouble getting to shelters.

For household items I normally give them to a bank that gives them for free. I really prefer places that give the items. I would NOT give to valuevillage. ValueVillage is pretty darn expensive here. Items I can find at the 99cent store are like 2-5 dollars there.

If it is a large item like a desk, chair, etc then i give to Freecyle or FreeToReuse or anyone that can come pick the items up since I do not have a car.
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Old 12-23-2005, 07:32 PM
 
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i goodwill a lot & use 'it's deductible!'. i get more for stuff legitimately as a writeoff than places like ouac or consignment. it is a whole lot easier to do. (and taxes are a pita regardless, but less depressing if you actually get something back for your efforts.) i freecycle for stuff goodwill won't take though (like mattresses- my crib mattresses will be going soon, & they are immaculate, have been under waterproof pads, but goodwill won't take 'em & who wants to bother selling?)
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Old 12-25-2005, 02:07 PM
 
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I go through my closets twice a year. Things that are worth $10 or more; I sell on Ebay. Everything else goes in a pile for a summer garage sale. Whatever doesn't sell at the garage sell goes to a charity shop. I find that when it comes to organizing kids clothes, it's good to keep them in labeled plastic bins. That way, when you pull out all those baby clothes for your next one, you can sort much faster to decide what is a keeper and what to get rid of.
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Old 12-26-2005, 08:08 PM
 
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I just ebayed a cutco knife that is brand new and we do not use- not a good knife for us. It brought in $60. Well worth it!

But, I will do a goodwill pickup in the next month, give stuff away, throw out, and do a local church clothing sale for some of dd's things if we are having a boy.

I have had great luck buying on the TP. Ebay too. Also I just got a freecycle black perfect file cabinet w a lock. Our old one will be at the curb on trash night since its 4th hand.

One of my News Years Resolutions is to try to use items already there and not have to create new ones or spend money to get new ones whenever possible.

"The true joy of life is the trip. The station is only a dream. It constantly out distances us."
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Old 12-26-2005, 08:52 PM
 
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anotehr option is an online yard sale. i do this pretty frequently. i just take pics of what i want to offer, figure my prices, post them on yahoo or anotehr photo service and post the link on a bargain trading website in my area, on craigls list, the TP here, and anotehr message board I frequent. You can add actual shipping charges or have local people pick up. Anything that doesnt go after a period of time I either ebay, freecycle or donate. Has worked great for me in the past and I don't take the risk of something going for way less than I intended like you do on ebay.
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Old 12-26-2005, 09:07 PM
 
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An online garage sale sounds good- I call ebay my virtual garage sale.

"The true joy of life is the trip. The station is only a dream. It constantly out distances us."
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Old 12-27-2005, 01:37 PM
 
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I use a combination of eBAY, craigslist and donating to local thrift shop.

Craigslist.org I use for furniture, big things, etc. FREE to post ads. Up to 4 pics included. and no selling fees! Craigslist is by location, so just pick the craigslist nearest you. For yarn, knitting, quilting, there are also various free web sites and yahoo groups to list things on. I have moved more than one large loom out of my house, via these groups. And for $$$!

I even found a new home for a naughty cat (she bit my child) on craigslist. So this is a great site!

best regards,
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