This is a collaborative post.
I’m on a crazy eBay selling mission. It was prompted by a callout by Mumsnet who were looking for bloggers to put eBay to the test, and now I’m thinking it’s the answer to all my problems. Do I want to declutter my house, and make a bit of extra money? Yes and yes. Both of these things are so high on my priority list at the moment that putting some time into being a seller rather than a buyer on this infamous auction website feels super productive and incredibly worthwhile. Did it live up to the hype though? Was it all worth it? Keep reading to find out…
Past Experience with eBay
My love affair with eBay began back in my student days. Another student was always saying how she bought all her clothes off there for 99p and it sounded too good to be true. She did warn me though… It can become pretty addictive. And she wasn’t wrong. Before I knew it, I was buying all sorts off there (all the outfits above were courtesy of eBay, except my graduation robes…) and yes, it was super cheap, but sometimes, the amount I was buying was ridiculous. And I’m such a funny shape that most things didn’t end up fitting quite the way I was hoping. I went through a bit of a selling spree in 2013, but after a few work lunchtimes being used up waiting in Post Office queues and no more items of clothing in my wardrobe I was willing to part with, it soon stopped. However, with an abundance of baby bits accumulating in our home, there’s no end of things I’m eager to part with now… let the selling recommence!
Selling Big Ticket Items
I decided to try and sell one of the car seats we tested earlier this year for Mother & Baby magazine. I know buying car seats second hand is quite frowned upon as you don’t know their history, but seeing as this seat had been used only for a couple of journeys and wasn’t one we were going to keep ourselves, it was just too luxurious to not be used again. It’s LEATHER for crying out loud. With a retail price of almost £300, I was hoping to get a fair bit of money for it so optimistically began the listing at £100, with a £200 Buy it Now price for any eager beavers. I listed it as Collection Only as I wasn’t keen on carting it off to the post office, and the idea of arranging a courier is too much hassle). I snapped some quick photos on my phone, making sure to show off some of the seat’s features and quickly uploaded them to the website.
The Selling Process
The site has changed a bit since I last listed and I found it really easy and intuitive to figure out. You can list your item using your desktop or mobile and after trying both: I’d recommend desktop for high priced items that you might want to spend a bit more time making sure you’ve got all the details right and use your mobile to quickly list items with a lower value.
eBay recommend starting a listing in the evening so that it finishes when most people are at home and have the time to take part in a last minute bidding frenzy – and I’m so glad I followed their advice as the majority of my bids came in during the last fifteen minutes, upping the selling price by a whopping £37. I made sure to reply to every buyer who sent a question about the item, even though sometimes it was through gritted teeth – if they’d have just READ the listing properly, they’d have found out the answer to their own question!
The car seat ended up selling for £137 (which then eBay deducts £13.69 from). I was absolutely thrilled. It was collected quickly by the buyer, and I’m really pleased it’s gone to a new home to be used rather than sat in storage getting dusty. It was such a bulky item that knowing it’s no longer taking up valuable space for us is really motivating to continue the good work… I’m about to embark on a MASSIVE tidy up and declutter and I’m looking forward to seeing just how much extra storage space I can give ourselves back.
The Selling Bug
I’m definitely on a roll with it now. Since listing and selling that first item, I’ve already put two more things on (including an ISOFIX car seat base – seeing a theme, here?) and have just scheduled three new listings to go live tonight. I’ve made myself a bag that is now specifically for things I want to list and that makes it a lot easier to take photos of the items in batches to make for super efficient selling. I haven’t got many other big ticket items left to sell, but I’m hoping even getting rid of lots of little things will still be worthwhile.
I’m really starting to feel the pinch from not being at work. It’s not a massive worry because LPD works hard to ensure all our bills and food are paid for, and on a day-to-day basis, we’re fine. But there isn’t really any money spare at the end of the month or to cope with any unexpected bills (ruddy cars, I’m looking at you). I keep creeping into my overdraft which I hate, and I’m very aware that we have no savings or anything being put away for a rainy day. By the end of the year, I really want to be in a better place with our finances by making sure our expenditure is as low as it can be, and that we’ve boosted our income as much as we can – and if one of the ways I can help boost our family coiffures is by selling a few bits and pieces on eBay – I’m going for it.
Feeling SO MUCH BETTER for it
Even the process of going through items in our house that I’m willing to part with has kickstarted my tidying mission. And I’ve never been so motivated to get the house in order. If, like me, you need a bit of a jump start to get your home in better shape, I definitely recommend jumping on the eBay bandwagon. You may not make mega bucks, but you could end up being surprised and every little helps, right? I’d LOVE to know if you’ve had any major successes on eBay and fingers crossed, I’ll be able to boast about some more stonking sales soon too.
Disclaimer: I am a member of the Mumsnet Bloggers Panel, a group of parent bloggers who have volunteered to review products, services, events and brands for Mumsnet. I have not paid for the product or to attend an event. I have editorial control and retain full editorial integrity. I have received a voucher as a token of thanks for this post.