Guest post by Anita of Traveling Along
Wouldn’t it be great if kids only grew at Christmas, or on their birthdays — you know, those times when Grandparents happily purchase gifts? Thankfully, one of my mother-in-law’s love languages is “gifts” — specifically expressed via yard sale shopping!
Often what she picks is perfect, but sometimes it is too big or too small, not for the right season, or just not right for that child. However, I have a system in place for the clothing that doesn’t work, and we still benefit from her purchases!
I have learned to consign anything superfluous that is in decent shape, no matter its origin. There are different shops and they have varying payment methods.
This is what I do…
A: Charity Thrift Shop
The charity thrift shop by us will take up to 20 items a week, split the profit 50/50, and send a check when my total is over $10. I have received several checks — usually about every other month.
The store by us also takes household items and adult clothing — and since I get a check that turns into cash, I am able to purchase anything we need anywhere I want!
B: Children’s Consignment Chain
Our local children’s consignment chain will only take children’s items — toys, shoes, clothing etc. They will often pay cash on the spot or store credit. If you opt for store credit you get 15% more than in cash.
Currently I have about $4 in store credit, which isn’t a lot, but at their prices I could easily buy a pair of shoes and probably a pair of pants for a child who suddenly complains of sore toes or worn out knees.
In addition to consigning the kids clothes, I do whole closet clean outs for my husband and myself, stuffing bags full and delivering them for consignment. This will turn into cash in my pocket as well as clean out my own closet space, which has a therapeutic effect and clears the head. BONUS!
A few more tips for consignment:
1. Keep nice clothes nice. Dirty, stained, or damaged clothing will not sell and will be donated or tossed. Be sure to fold them neatly — presentation matters!
2. Clean out the closet regularly. If it is a good item but just doesn’t get worn, bag it and sell it!
3. Don’t just clean out clothes. Take in those dishes you haven’t used in years, clean out your purses, scarves, jewelry and other accessories.
4. Pick a day a month (ex. first Tuesday of the month) and fill a box!
5. Call your local consignment shops before going in and ask about their policies. You don’t want to waste your time or theirs.
I am not even half as intense as I could be with this, but in even the past few months we have added over $40 to our buying power through consignment. This will go a long way, especially buying back at thrift store prices!
I hope these tips can get you started!
What are YOUR best consignment tips?
Anita lives in Virginia with her husband and kids on a hopeful micro farm in the city. When she is not fine-tuning the budget, she can be found canning, cooking with spare parts, helping with math, praying the garden will grow, attending to a sick chicken, or covered in clay at the potters wheel. She blogs at Traveling Along.
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