Make Extra Money: What to Sell on Craigslist

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If you are moving or just need some extra money, Craigslist is a great way to sell the junk that is piling up in your closets and basement.

As long as you use common sense when placing your ad and dealing with buyers, you can pocket some extra cash and get rid of the clutter in your home. It’s a quick and easy way to make fast cash and a great alternative to eBay for those who need money quickly or have bulky items to sell.

There are no fees associated with this site, so your only expense is your time and energy.

What items sell well on Craigslist?

Household and electronics items such as furniture, washing machines/dryers, microwaves, small appliances, old cell phones (make sure they work!), area rugs, tools, air conditioners, televisions and pet crates you no longer need always sell quickly on Craigslist. How about that unused exercise bike that you use as a clothes hanger?

Clothing is a big seller on Craigslist if you package it correctly. Gather up clothes that you don’t want. Make sure everything is clean and in good condition. No one wants your old musty, ripped clothing.

Selling in ‘bulk’ is the way to go. Posting one item of clothing on Craigslist is a waste of time for everyone involved unless it is something higher priced, such as a wedding gown. If you have something that pricey, think of taking it to a consignment shop or putting it on eBay. (continue reading below)

How Much Should I Sell My Stuff For?

Stop dreaming. You’re not going to get back what you paid for the items you want to sell.

Furniture should be priced at about 30% of your initial purchase price and even less if it is not in good condition. Many first time apartment dwellers and college students buy these items and do not have a lot of money. If you do not need the items anymore some cash is better than none.

ClothingSell your clothing in a ‘lot’ by size and season. Don’t price by piece or you’ll end up having a yard sale in your home. It’s all or nothing when I sell — and, on average, I charge about $50 for a bag full of top quality clothing and $25-30 for basic jeans/t-shirt items.

I always sell my children’s clothing when they outgrow it and use the profits to buy the next size up for them. I group the items by size and try to have a large enough lot of them to sell in bulk. Typically I sell a packed over-sized garbage bag of one-season clothing in a single size (or close range of sizes such as 4-6)  for between $40 to $60. Boys clothing always seems to command a smaller price — it may be because they have less clothing than some girls do. :)

Cell Phones/Electronics: If you aren’t sure, check eBay for the going price of your item. Make sure everything works before you sell it. Typically you should be charging about 30-40% (or less if it’s not in good condition) of what you paid for it unless it’s valued higher on eBay.

Appliances: If you need to get rid of these items, keep the price low. If you paid $500 for your washer 6 years ago, you might be able to get $100 for it. If you no longer need your air conditioner because you have central air, offer it for half the price you paid for it if it’s in good working condition.

For most other items, think ‘yard sale prices.’ People come to Craigslist for a bargain. You don’t want to spend time going back and forth over price. If you really want to get rid of the item(s), consider being flexible with your price or you may be stuck with it.

When Should I List My Items on Craigslist?

Post your ad on a Friday or very early on a Saturday morning for the best response. Most people are hunting for bargains on the weekend. If you have household items to sell (furniture, appliances) the beginning and end of the month are great times to post — that’s when people usually move.

Safety Tips

Do not post your phone number in your ad. Use the anonymous email feature so you can pick and choose which emails you should reply to. When calling someone who responds with their phone number, block your number if possible.

Meet at an agreed upon location to sell items that don’t require a pickup if you don’t feel comfortable giving out your home address. Just use common sense and make sure you aren’t alone in your home when you have someone come out to pick something up — like furniture or appliances.

Be smart. Avoid scams and don’t respond to any emails from people offering to wire you money if you ship the product you have for sale. Typically they are in a ‘big rush’ to get your old rug or they have a ‘sick mother’ who desperately needs your used bird cage. :)

My experience selling on Craigslist has been positive — you will get those who want to take for everything you have for free, but most people are reasonable and great to deal with.

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