Is your home overflowing with ‘stuff’? Is it too much trouble to arrange a yard sale, but too valuable to just throw away? Would you like to find someone else to do all the work for you to find that stuff new homes? Now you can…
Finding a center ~
Check your local yellow pages under ‘consignment’, and give them a call to ask about their pricing and procedures. They make money by selling other people’s stuff, and keeping a percentage of the profit. They’ll be happy to talk to you and help you understand what’s required to sell your items through their shop.
What can you consign? ~
In most areas, clothing is still the most-often consigned item, but even if you visit and see only clothing, ask the staff if they’d consider other items. Frequently they will. Some shops will consign nearly any non-perishable item. Small housewares such as blenders and toasters, video game cartridges, children’s toys, dishes, books, and even electronics such as clock radios and home computers. Larger consignment centers may even accept furniture and appliances, or other home furnishings.
What’s it worth? ~
Don’t worry if you have no idea what your items should be priced at. The staff at the consignment shop will have a good idea of area prices, and will take care of getting your items labeled and displayed. Remember, they only get paid when your stuff sells, so they’ll get all they can for it for you.
Your responsibilities ~
Your local consignment place will probably want you to bring your stuff to them. A few of the bigger centers may provide pick-up service, especially if you have quite a bit to go at once. Be sure to ask whether they have specific drop-off times. Some centers will want you to bring in new items only during certain hours or days, others will accept new consignments any time that they’re open.
Condition to deliver ~
Almost without exception, your local consignment will want you to bring in clean items in good repair. A few of the larger centers may be able to do small repairs, or wash clothing, but don’t plan on that. Expect to wash and neatly fold clothing, and don’t consign anything that has missing buttons, broken zippers, or similar problems. Bring in items in a condition that you would want to buy them, if you were on the buying end of the transaction. Remember, all your items are going to be offered to the public for sale. The better the look and function, the more they’ll be worth.
The payoff ~
The consignment center will handle the sale of your items and keep a percentage of each sale. Your part of the profits will be kept for you at the center, usually until it reaches a pre-set amount, after which they will mail you a check. It’s too much paperwork to send your payment after each sale, especially if you have many small items. You’ll likely receive a monthly check each time you reach the minimum payout. That minimum may vary by shop, but it’s usually five or ten dollars.
Bonus benefit ~
Best of all your home will have less clutter! Take all those things you’ve not been using to a consignment center near you and start getting some value out of that stuff.
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