Spring cleaning? The best ways to sell your unwanted stuff Leave a comment


After almost a year in COVID lockdown, Melanie Dicker’s Anderson Township, Ohio home is filled with clothing and toys she doesn’t know what to do with.

“I have a bunch of toys in this diaper box,” she told us, going through a stack in a closet. “They are like everywhere.”

Her dining room of cluttered with the remnants of months of at-home learning for her two young boys..

“This is my second graders stuff, ” she said pointing to one pile. “And this is my 9 year old’s stuff.”

Like many moms, she is ready for spring cleaning of unwanted clothing, toys, and games. “They need to go because I don’t know what I am going to do with them.”

But it is not just parents feeling cramped after a long pandemic winter.

Tiffini Carole is a professional woman who is embarrassed to admit she has several years’ worth of clothing that no longer fits.

“I have 3 closets worth of clothes and I still don’t have enough room,” the Batavia woman told us. ” I have no excuses, no excuses whatsoever.”

Admit it: you probably have a closet somewhere in your home that is stuffed to the gills with clothing, shoes, old Halloween costumes, and you’d probably like to get rid of some of it.

So we wanted to know where you can get the most money, with the least amount of effort.

Sell at consignment shops, get top dollar

One of the most time-tested ways to unload your unwanted clothes and furniture is through consignment shops.

Donna Speigel, owner of Cincinnati’s biggest consignment chain, The Snooty Fox, says nothing is easier. You bring the your clothing, shoes, purses, even furniture, and they put it on display and sell it.

“Bring your things in, we select what we think will sell,” Speigel said.

Consignment shops typically do a 50-50 split on the proceeds, and you get paid only when your item sells.

So you may have to wait a few weeks, but Speigel says it is worth it, because you will make more money than selling at a garage sale or on local social media.

“With a yard sale, people are going to want to pay you a dollar, or just 50 cents,” Speigel said.

But here, she says, a purse can bring in $75.

A nice pair of women’s desk shoes can sell for $25. “These are Sperry’s” Speigel said, “and they will sell for $24.99.”

The one downside of consignment shops is that they can be fussy about what they accept: most don’t want to sell worn out clothing and items.

It must be in good condition, and designer names like Ralph Lauren, Tommy Hilfiger, Vineyard Vines, and Coach are a real plus when you are trying to sell.

Sell at resale shops, get cash immediately

Resale shops differ from consignment shops in that you walk in with clothing, shoes, or toys…..and walk out with cash on the spot.

That can be a real advantage, though you may not earn as much as a consignment shop pays. That’s because many offer you just one third of what they will list it for on their shelves.

Some of the most popular resale chains are:

Laura Lewis is manager of Once Upon a Child in Anderson Township.

“What are we looking for most? Spring sand summer clothing right now, outdoor toys, walkers, cribs, and always strollers,” Lewis told us on a walk through the store.

One hint? She says to make the most money, bring in items other kids will want. “Nike, Super Heroes, Under Armor those are the big brands,” she said.

Sell via apps, and stay at home

The pandemic has seen an explosion in the use of selling apps, that work like consignment shops in some cases, or like a classified ad in other cases.

Your best is to check severalof them, and see what works best for you. Some will connect you with buyers and send you a box to fill and ship. With others, you are a bit more on your own.

Some of the most popular are:

  • LetGo, the largest marketplace app in the US, with the most potential buyers for your stuff
  • Offer Up, where you can remain anonymous, unlike Facebook
  • Mercari, where you can set up an online store.
  • Poshmark, for designer labels and other high end items.

Sell locally via social media

If you want to just sell clothing, toys, or furniture locally, and keep all the proceeds for yourself, two of the best local social media sites are:

With NextDoor, you can set up a virtual yard sale, where no one comes into your garage. That’s a great way to keep people out of your home during this pandemic.

Of course, Craigslist is also an easy way to sell locally, but you don’t know who you are dealing with. Craigslist also has a reputation of being an easy place for scammers to prowl, with fake ads or fake offers. So just be careful.

Springtime yard sale

The easiest way to unload household goods is to set them out on your driveway on a warm spring Saturday, But it can be a lot of work, and don’t expect to get top dollar for anything.

Melanie and Tiffini are going to give local consignment and resale shops a try this spring, and see if they can get some cash for all that stuff in their closets.

Laura Lewis says she will be ready for them. “You just come in drop if off, shop around. It’s perfect!” she said.

So clean out those closets, and don’t waste your money.
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