In case you don’t know about my relationship with “Ebay”, let me just give you a quick update. I discovered around my sophomore year of college that I could buy all of my clothes on Ebay for about the price that I would pay in a thrift or second-hand store.
The drawback to this method, as you can assume, is that you are unable to try on what you are purchasing. But I find this problem to be mostly avoidable if I stick to only buying brands that I know and trust. As a result, I have been buying gently used name brand clothing from Gap, Banana Republic and Anthropologie for less money then I would have paid at Target or Walmart. Most items include detailed measurements and pictures to help with the “fitting” process- if they don’t, one can usually message the seller and ask for these things specifically.
The other advantage to Ebay is that I am able to clean my closet out, sell the items, and then save up enough accumulated Paypal money to restock for the coming season. Selling is not as hard as it might seem- you create a template and then just plug in different info for different items.
As an example of this, I have 2 rather significant Ebay sucess stories to share with you as of late. One happened about a month ago, wherein I decided to clean out my closet of a few items that I picked up from Plato’s Closet, a local women’s second-hand clothing store. This store recently had a “Grab Bag” event, wherein you could stuff as many clothes as possible into a bag, all for $10. As a result, I got around 15 items of clothing from places like JCrew and Anthropologie for only $10!! It worked out to around 75 cents an item.
At this Grab Bag Event, I picked up a cute Free People Anthropologie dress.
It wasn’t until a few weeks later that I realized I hadn’t had the desire to wear this particular dress, and probably never would.
What did I do? I put it on Ebay!
What happened? Less than 12 hours later, I had over 15 people watching the item. In the end, the dress sold for over $60 dollars.
$60- $0.75= $59.25 profit.
My second example happened just yesterday and this morning. As I was browsing on Craigslist for name-brand clothing items (yes, you can get great deals off of Craigslist as well!), I came across a pair of Joe’s Jeans. The name of this particular style is “Ex-Lover”, and they are cropped “Boyfriend style” jeans. They are also “distressed”, which is another way of saying, “You are going to pay us hundreds of dollars for jeans that look as though they were found in a dumpster”. It’s beautiful and expensive wreckage, like modern art. Oh, the social commentaries!!
But the point is that these jeans go for $174 at Anthropologie and Nordstroms. Yes, $174. In fact,the only reason I remembered this fact was that when I first saw it in the catalog, I thought someone had made a typo. These jeans literally have HOLES in them. You are paying money for the ABSENCE of jeans!!
Okay, someone stop me, or I will never make it to the end of this story. When I saw this Craigslist ad, what immediately jumped out was that the person was only selling them for $65. Gosh, I can’t believe I included “only” and “$65” in the same sentence. But $65 is a lot less than $174, I am good enough at Math to know that.
I immediately showed the Craigslist ad to Jesse and then checked Ebay for the same item. Going for $145. Less than $174, but still more than $65.
Jesse’s first thought was that they must be “knock-off” jeans. Nope, I could tell from the pictures.
“Are they Used?” Nope. Brand new with tags.
“Ripped/torn/stained?” Yup. But that’s all intentional. (Again, who intentionally…..)
“Does the person live in Southlake and have lots of money to burn and doesn’t care of they overpay for an item, only to realize they no longer want it?”
Turns out, yes. Exactly yes. The mom that owned these jeans lived in Southlake, down the street from some of my students.
So what did I do? I bought them from her yesterday afternoon on my way to piano lessons.
Less than 12 hours later, I’ve already sold them for $110 on Ebay.
$110-65= $45 profit.
Not bad for about 15 minutes of work!
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