How Being Organized Can Pay Off

Mar 29

‘Tis the season for children’s consignment sales – one of my favorite times of the year! In our general area, the consignment sales come around in the spring and fall. The other day while driving home, I saw a sign for the children’s consignment sale I have worked with over the years. Turns out they are holding their spring sale less than 3 miles from my house.

With everything going on in our life, not only did I figure I wouldn’t have the time to get involved in another sale before moving…But I wasn’t sure I even had enough clothing/toys to make it worth my time and effort. That’s why I wasn’t aware that their sale was so close to home.

I was wrong!

Since moving to the rental, the seasons have changed and I’ve had a chance to go through the kids closets. I also got a pretty good look into their closets (and mine!) while packing up for Florida last week. Well, before I knew it, over the last month or so….This overflowing stack of bins took over part of the office closet…

As soon as I saw that spring sale sign, I couldn’t wait to get home and sort out the stack. I figured I must have enough children’s clothing to make it worth my time and effort. And this stack proves I do…

The sale allows a maximum of 100 items per consignor and this table holds about 75.

Sign me up!

As I was sorting out the clothes, I thought it may be a good idea to share what i’ve been up to. Many of you likely weren’t reading my blog waaaay back in january 2012. The blog was a newborn back then and I had maybe 4 readers – 2 were friends of mine, 1 was my sister and 1 was me. In january 2012 I shared my tips on how you can make money by simply being organized. I make money this way all the time and what I am sharing here is legit. This isn’t some crazy “work from home” scheme. These are legitimate ways to make money for your family.

Last year here on the blog I even tracked how much money I made re-selling items and it was close to the $3,000 mark.

It’s true.

Not sure about you, but $3,000 is a lot of money for a family of 5.

And for something that takes just a little effort and time, it’s completely worth it.

So, today I am going to share a few images of me sorting out those bins and then share some of the money-making ideas I wrote about over a year ago. If you’d like to read that entire post, you can find it here. It’s a bit long, but it’s full of great info. It’s definitely worth your time if you ever considered re-selling items to make a little extra income, but you’ve been hesitant.

By the way, stay tuned next week for my big garage sale post. It’s been almost a year in the making – considering our sale was in June last summer. Sorry friends, but for some reason I feel like I’ve had a lot going on since then. Ha!

Here was my floor during the sorting process…

In case you couldn’t tell…

Once everything was sorted out, here are my stacks…

And since those stacks only make sense to me…Some details for you…

You may be wondering how I even came to have this much stuff? Or where the donations are?

I’m pretty vigilant about going through the kids clothing on a regular basis. Each time I go through a closet or find something that doesn’t fit the kids anymore or find something they aren’t interested in or never wear or while doing laundry I find something that needs to be passed on….I take a quick look at it and answer these questions:

1. Is this something i want to keep for sentimental purposes? If yes, it immediately goes into a bin I keep in each of the kids closets or in the attic

2. Is this something i can pass on to a family member or friend? If yes, I put it in a stack in the office closet until I have enough to mail off a box. These items usually go to family members – all of our family lives out of state.

3. Are there any stains, holes or marks that make this not worth passing on – trash?

4. Should I donate this? If yes, it gets put into the back of our car. The goodwill is located a few blocks from school. Since I drive by 2 times a day, I stop there all the time to drop things off. I don’t let donations sit in a closet or anywhere in this house. If we aren’t keeping it, it’s gone immediately.

5. Should I keep this item for re-sale? If yes, I immediately put it into a bin – typically kept in the office closet. I let these items accrue over time until the stack is large enough to make a big listing on e-bay. Or I wait around for the next consignment sale. 

Back to the upcoming consignment sale….

I’m going to enter these items into their database and then go through the tagging process before drop off next week. This consignment sale allows you to track your sales online throughout the sale week (that’s fun!), and then I’ll have my check in hand when the sale ends.

When it comes to consignment sales, if it’s a reputable one they are very picky about what they accept. Our consignment sale volunteers check each and every item with a fine-toothed comb. Nothing passes their inspection. I have not had one sale where I didn’t come home with stained clothing. Sometimes the lighting at home isn’t as good as it is in a large, well-lit warehouse. Due to their strict guidelines, I save the best of the best to sell there – top name brands and in perfect condition. The better your item, the more money you stand to make.

I’ll be sure to let you guys know how much I end up making on this stack…

The most I have made through a consignment sale is around $600. And I’ve never made less than $150. It really depends on how much you bring and how you price it.

Remember, all you have to do it be organized! Keep your gently worn and in excellent condition items tucked away in a box and look in your area for a consignment sale. There are even consignment stores for adults – so think about going through your own closets and making a little extra money.

But, like I said, consignment sales aren’t the only way you can make extra money. Here are a few tips from that big ole post back in 2012….

ebay:


** ebay is a great way to sell because their platform is easy to use. I’ve been selling on ebay for almost 13 years and they are always improving their site. What is great about ebay is that you can get as in-depth as you like with their platform. You can sell randomly throughout the year, when you have a decent collection of items. Or you can open your own ebay shop and sell all year long and pay a discounted rate. To open a shop, you pay a small fee each month (i think it’s $15 per month) and pay that amount whether or not you have items listed for sale.

craigslist:


When it comes to selling bigger items that you can’t ship via e-bay, I have found craigslist to be a great resource! I’ve sold a variety of items from baby gear to an old fridge/freezer to furniture to home accessories and more. 2 years ago when our washer died, my husband wanted to buy a new matching set. At first we thought about donating the dryer, but since it was in excellent condition, we gave craigslist a shot. Within an hour of listing the dryer it was sold! We also sold our old swing set on cragislist…

 

The family that purchased the set came to disassemble it and hauled it away too!
school uniform re-sale:


In order to help families gain back some of their uniform costs, most private schools have a uniform re-sale at the end of the school year. A uniform re-sale can operate in many ways but most of the time it functions like a consignment sale – you tag your items, they keep a percentage of your earnings which goes back into the school budget, they handle the advertising and the sale days – and at the end, you get a check.

School uniforms are a big expense. Our boys attend a private school and we have lots of uniform piece options given our wide range of weather during the school year. We typically invest a lot of money into uniforms and some of it never has the tag removed. Each year I really look forward to this sale because I know I’m helping other families and the school, but also gaining back some of the money we invested.
Garage sales:
Garage sales are so great because they are operated and managed by YOU – which means you call the shots, you choose what’s for sale, you set the start and end times….It’s all good. the downside for sure is all of the work involved in getting your items priced and set up. that process last summer took me a good week or more – but it’s worth it. In one day, your sale is over and you have a lot of money to show for your hard work.
consignment sales:
There is going to be some work on your end, but in my opinion consignment sales are worth it. Most consignment sales have their own database through which you enter the items you want to sell. The beauty is that you set the price of your items. I have participated through 2 different consignment sale companies in our area and both of them have great, user-friendly data entry systems. All you do is enter your inventory, print the tags at home, and attach them to your items. Each company has their own system and how they want you to arrive at the sale for drop-off. So just make sure you follow their directions – and then drop-off will be a breeze. It’s an easy way to make good money!
Remember, if you want to read my original post on this topic with a ton of details, be sure to read it here. Or feel free to ask me questions here in the comment section. Making a little extra money is easy when you’re organized!

comments +

  1. Erin Biggers says:

    I love the Uniform Pantry at my girls school. It donation based instead of consignment but the money goes to the school and people who donate get in a raffle for gift cards to the Uniform Store.

  2. MelissaG says:

    Hi Sam..

    Curious…how do you decide what to sell on Ebay and what to consign? My kids are 18,10,9,8 and 8. We pass down clothes, but my 8 year olds still get a lot of new stuff. I typically buy name brand due and they are still worth some money when I am done. I have always given their clothes away, simply because I DO NOT like saving stuff. And I didn't want to have to wait until the next season to sell it. BUt, I have decided that is A LOT of money I have given up…especially my daughters clothes!!

    I like Ebay because you can get a little more. However the hassle of shipping turns me away. I haven't done consignment yet, but my friend was telling me about "Just Between Friends". It's too late for summer stuff, but I was thinking I might try that in the fall. Just wanted to get your input!

    I always do craigslist for bigger furniture pieces, or home items. I buy there too…in fact, just bought a sectional and 2 new end tables for our new home!!!

    Thanks for any input!!

    • Hey there! I'm happy to answer your questions!

      Basically, the only reason I am selling these at the consignment sale is because it will take me less time to do this sale as opposed to taking photos, listing on eBay and then shipping. The consignments sales only come around twice a year. So I sell essentially the same things I would sell on ebay at this sale and vice versa – one is just easier.

      I only sell items on eBay and at consignment sales that are practically brand new with no stains and some even with the tags still attached.

      Everything else would be sold at a garage sale, given to family or donated.

      Hope that helps answer your question.

      I realize the idea of shipping via eBay is such a turn off, but if you can do those flat rate shipping boxes you will see how very easy it actually is. You simply print your label through PayPal and eBay – it's all seamless and connected together. Then you just set up a pick up at your front door or throw them in the box at your post office location. Very easy!!!

      🙂

  3. Kallie says:

    Melissa G – I really like the Just Between Friends franchise sales. In fact, I just cashed my $1400 check the other day from the Spring sale which was just held in our area. It is some work, like Samantha pointed out, in getting the items ready for sale – washed, ironed, hung, tagged, & dropped off; however, I have found the benefits outweigh the work! There are other options for children's consignment sales aside from JBF, with plenty of local options such as preschools and other more locally owned/run sales. Our preschool hold an annual kids sale which has always been great for me too.

    • MelissaG says:

      $1400! WOW! That's impressive. Can I ask…is that all from clothes sales, or did you sell other items as well?

    • Kallie says:

      I sold toys, games, puzzles, books, lots of clothes, shoes, some accessories, a few stuffed friends, and a few other randoms. Lucikly, our sale did not have a maximum number of items we could bring!

    • Kallie! That is totally amazing! $1400?! Wow! Good for you!!!!!

      Thank you for replying to melissa and I'm so glad you have enjoyed your consignment sale experience. Yes, a lot of work – but so worth it!

  4. Consignment sales are a bit of work, but like you said, if you're organized about it they're definitely worth the effort. I wrote a 4 part series about preparing for children's consignment sales. Come see it here: http://organized31.blogspot.com/2013/01/consignment-sale-prep-101-clothing.html

  5. Rachel O. says:

    Awesome, fantastic info! I'm a big fan of garage sales and Craigslist – those are some fantastic ways to make money.

  6. Admin says:

    This is a great post. Thanks for sharing all of these great ideas.

    Check out: http://sellingkidsclothesandtoys.blogspot.com/

  7. These sounds a great blog in regards to organizing your homes and interiors, love the way the entire room is being organized. NYC professional organizing services

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