De-cluttering is an issue that strikes a chord with many of us. The concept is met equally with a myriad of reasons as to why it can’t be achieved and conversely, the importance of why it is a task that must be tackled.
Usually, all that is needed to overcome the resistance or prompt us into action is the right type of motivation; so today I will share with you the secrets of how to turn your unwanted and unneeded possessions into de-cluttered dollars.
So, you’ve followed our previous tips (6 Simple Steps to a De-cluttered Paradise) and now find that you have several piles of items that you no longer want or need. Or, perhaps you haven’t even begun, because you anticipate those piles of unwanted goods and feel equally overwhelmed about what you will do with it all, once you’ve made the leap and decided to ditch the clutter.
If you followed the steps in our previous article, you will now have a selection of different coloured garbage bags easily identifying the items that you wish to give to family or friends, donate to charity, advertise for sale (or give away for free) and throw out.
If that is the case, STOP!
Before handing over all your unwanted items, we want to run you through the same process that we take our clients through in determining if you have items of value that are worth advertising for sale, and other options for disposing of your no longer needed possessions.
“WHAT IS WORTH SELLING?”
Almost every home has a saleable collection of furniture, large & small electrical appliances, unused building materials & decorator items that are no longer required or in use and you have no doubt de-cluttered some of these items. A professional de-cluttering expert would say that if you haven’t used it for 6 months or worn it for 12 months, you don’t need it.
The saying that ‘one man’s trash is another man’s treasure’ is 100% accurate & I advocate advertising every unwanted item for sale.
The key to getting this right is remembering three important things in relation to each item:
- If you don’t sell it or give it away, it is going to cost you money to get rid of it.
- If you are selling it (or giving it away), it must not cost you money to dispose of it.
- If it is un-saleable and inoperable or in poor condition, it is junk. Dispose of it appropriately – take it to the tip. Charity shops incur huge costs disposing of donor’s junk and their funds are better directed to helping people in need.
I believe that pretty much everything is saleable and for this reason, should at least be advertised – whether it sells is really a question of getting the price right. This includes items that no longer operate. If your unwanted items do not sell, then items in good condition should of course go to charity and this will leave the minimal amount going to land fill. Everyone’s a winner!
So, now that we have that worked out, let’s talk about how to go about selling your items and what factors will help you get the best price possible for the things you have:
- Round up all the items you intend to sell and set aside some time to get them all listed at once (or on a rolling listing system) so that you can drive buyers to look at all the items you have for sale.
- Search your chosen selling platform (eBay, Gumtree etc.) for each item you are intending to sell, to see if there is others on offer & see how yours compares and get an idea of value.
- Start preparing your listings – Be as factually descriptive as possible in you heading – this must include colour, brand, size, model & quantity as a minimum.
- Be honest – describe it as it is – warts & all. Buyers know they’re buying second hand & will bid with more confidence if they feel that they have an accurate description of the item.
- Add photos, as many as possible. Photograph the item from every angle, include close ups of the brand label/model number if relevant & also of any defect.
- Take the time to write a great long description of the item. Again, be detailed. Start by re-stating the description you used in the heading section & then expand upon that. Be positive in your description also, using words like beautiful, great, as new, reliable etc.
- Finish with a sentence that affirms that the buyer will be happy e.g. ‘A must for any enthusiast’, ‘every child’s dream’ or ‘the new owner will not be disappointed’.
- If you are advertising more than one item, at the end of your main description, on a separate line, invite the reader to look at the other items you have for sale, even if the items are completely unrelated. You never know what a buyer is looking for.
- Advertise each item for a minimum of 5 days, and always include a weekend within that time.
- Be prepared to allow the ad to run a maximum of 3 times if a sale is not achieved the first time around – this gives the item a realistic opportunity to sell.
- Advertise all items as ‘pick up only’. If a purchaser is unable to collect, delivery will be at their expense, not yours.
Most importantly, treat it as a bit of fun. It never ceases to amaze me what uses people have for things and what items are saleable and remember, every item that sells is one item you do not have to pay to dispose of and every sale adds a little bit extra to the de-cluttered dollars balance.
Do you de-clutter regularly? SHARE with us in the comments below.
Main image source: Shutterstock