So, your house is almost ready to list on the real estate market. You’ve thoroughly cleaned inside and out. Painting and minor repairs are finished. You’ve decided which items to use for home staging. The only thing left to decide is what to do with all those things that won’t be making the move to the next house. You have several options depending on the items you want to sell.
Donate to charity
The quickest and easiest way to get rid of these things is to load them up and take them to the local Goodwill, Salvation Army, or other local charity drop-off box. This is probably the least cost-effective choice. To receive credit for donations, you must make a list of the items, determine a value for each item and obtain a receipt for them from the charity. Special rules apply to valuable items, and the prices have to be reasonable to avoid a red flag when you claim your deduction on your taxes. To be safe, check the IRS website for guidelines for charitable donations.
Have a sale
For many people, the first thing that comes to mind is to have a sale of some type. You can have a yard or garage sale at your own home, providing your covenants allow these types of sales. Or, you can move the sale to a parking lot on a busy thoroughfare. First, be sure to get permission from the property owner, preferably in writing. Some areas have designated sites for people to gather to sell their items, and other areas have markets that rent booths for selling clothing and household items. Check out all your options to see which is the least costly.
For a successful yard sale, you need lots of buyers. If you plan to have the sale at your home, you need to advertise in the local newspaper, put up notices on bulletin boards, and place signs on the roadways leading to your home (remember to remove them immediately following the sale). The signs should be readable from a passing car window. Also, don’t forget to post information about the sale on your social media accounts. If you don’t want lots of telephone calls asking what you have for sale, don’t list a phone number. Specify if early sales will be allowed and stick to your policy.
This type of sale works best for items of little value since the people who frequent these sales are looking for the lowest price. You have other options for items that are worth more money.
Sell on Facebook Community Online Yard sale
Many communities have online yard sale groups on Facebook. Check to see if your community has such a group. Most groups are closed and require permission from a site administrator before you can advertise your items, but most people are allowed into the group within 24 hours. Once you are allowed into the group, be sure to read the rules for using the site.
The rules vary from group to group. Some restrictions have to do with pictures used and how often you can bump your items in the news feed. You can post pictures of the items with an asking price. People will ask questions, comment, and counteroffer, much like a face-to-face yard sale, but you don’t have to completely break your normal routine to sell your items. Prices are usually better than at a face-to-face yard sale. Take really good photos and give accurate descriptions of wear and condition because if you don’t, people may back out or counteroffer for a lower price when they actually see the items.
Be very careful about meeting people. Make sure you choose a well-trafficked area to meet and maybe take a friend along.
Sell on consignment
If you have furniture or clothing in excellent condition, you may be wise to look into selling those items through a consignment shop. Many shops charge up to a 50 percent commission, but the selling price is much higher to offset the commission. Where you might expect to get $5 to $10 for a suit at a yard sale, you may get to keep $25 or more with a consignment shop. To get the most money, the article should still be in style and in excellent condition. Popular brand names also bring more money. Most shops have a one-time small administration fee to set up your account, but it’s normally in the $10 to $20 range and well worth it if you can make much more money on your items.
Careful planning can net you much more for items you no longer need. Earning some extra cash from these unneeded items will go a long way toward purchasing incidentals needed for your new home.