Buying and Selling on eBay: Tips, Tricks, Problems & Questions

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by HansderHund, Jul 27, 2012.

  1. Koala-T

    Koala-T Senior member

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    There are a number of people on this very thread doing just that, and a number of others using it as a second career/hobby-fund (I count myself among the second for the time being...)
     


  2. Koala-T

    Koala-T Senior member

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    Yeah, that's a helluva shout out.
     


  3. Snoogz

    Snoogz Senior member

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    Making a career out of this is possible...but it takes very long hours and dedication. Its not easy, its not the quick road to lots of money, but it can be lucrative, and does have benefits along side. Those benefits include of course how you decide to work, the hours, the time allocated, and the balance of work and family is in your hands. There are no days off, there are no vacation hours to substitute in, there is only your hard work, dedication, commitment, and outstanding service, that will yield exactly what you put into it...
     


  4. concealed

    concealed Senior member

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    I have said it before in this thread, but I wouldn't give up a traditional career to do this. In my opinion it is the perfect side hustle. The hours spent working at this hustle full time for most people is at least 60+ hours a week. You will likely make more money, and have less stress if you work a "regular" job for ~40 hours and supplement that with 20 hours a week of flipping.

    The reasons against going for it are that there is definitely an upper limit to how much you can make, especially depending on location. This may not be an issue as a relatively young guy with low expenses, but most will want to raise a family, and that becomes tougher to do. There are no retirement/health care/insurance benefits provided in addition to salary. The five-ten year outlook is not favorable for large increases outside of your own process efficiency gains, as thrift store prices continue to tick up, more competition emerges, etc. I am not saying it will shrivel to nothing, but ask Nataku, less meat on the bones than there was 6-7 years ago.

    In conclusion, for most, its not a wise financial decision to pursue this full time. Now, if you have a damning criminal record, not much of a traditional resume, or some other extenuating circumstance that makes it more difficult to find employment, then that changes things considerably.
     


  5. FlorianQC

    FlorianQC Senior member

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    Hey guys! Just a question for Canadians out there!
    I'm a new seller and for now I take profit of the 50 free listings per month (eBay.ca with shipping to North America and Europe, so hat lots a people can see it on different eBay mainpages)... but after one month of heavy thrifting it has become a problem, obviously... I received the eBay message about getting 100 free listings per month after the 15th of May (how surprising, when AliBABA declares it will get listed on NYSE ahahah). I think it won't be enough, as my success rate must be much lower than you guys!

    Do you also take profit of the free listings on eBay.com? What are the differences? I don't want to set up a shop right now, as I'm not sure that I will become a hardcore thrifter in the future.

    Anyway for 16$ or 20$ per month and a 1% rebate on final value fee, you have to sell at least 1.6k$ per month to get your money back... which is totally NOT my case ^^ Are my calculations right (depending on how many items you list, obv.)??

    Thanks guys!
     


  6. TheNeedMachine

    TheNeedMachine Senior member

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    +1. Well stated.

    While I'd love to quit my 9-to-5, a quick numbers run tells me I'd need to make at least 20% more via buying and selling vs. what I earn at my full time job (when I consider insurance, 401k matching, 20 paid days off per year, free internet, yearly bonus, the ease of telecommuting, etc).

    Not to discourage anyone who has the drive and energy to try it - it certainly can be done (as evidenced by folks here and elsewhere, to varying degrees of success). If the OP is determined to give it a go and be successful at it, that's one hurdle already jumped.
     


  7. capnwes

    capnwes Senior member

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    I think maybe everyone is focussing on the 50 free listings a little too much. It is only free insertion fees. Which is only worth $15 total.
     


  8. tonylamer

    tonylamer Senior member

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    I think that I've netted something like $5,000-$6,000 over the last twelve months. That's living in Canada, and living outside of Toronto. For me, the vision of professional thrifting was tarnished around November of last year when I looked at the pile of unsold stuff in my house that I maybe could've sold for a $20 profit/piece. And it had to be listed, boxed, mailed. I'd also had enough of being a "regular" at certain stores and flipping through every size 17+ shirt looking for that double-sawbuck. And without going into what I make at my real job, I didn't need the money.

    Now I thrift maybe once every week. Two or three stores max. And I'm only looking to pick up easy money (shell, Polo croc. oxfords, 1930s Clapp). And it's become fun again. The numbers are probably the same since I'm not buying any garbage.

    Even thinking about a pile of 1980s Brooks Brothers sportcoats sitting in my closet kind of makes me a little sick now. The hoarding aspect of thrifting is I think a real problem for some people.
     


  9. capnwes

    capnwes Senior member

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    [​IMG]
     


  10. Fueco

    Fueco Senior member

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    I'll add that pro thrifting isn't for everyone. It makes sense for me because of where I was in my career, motivation to not work for The Man, and having decent benefits through my wife. If I can pull in decent money while also farming our little 1/8th acre garden, I will be able to put food on the table and good money into savings for when we're ready to buy a home.
     


  11. capnwes

    capnwes Senior member

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    This is well said and a valid point. This definitely would be a poor choice for most.

    The decision I made to go full-er time with this was made with extreme care and close evaluation. It has only been 4 months, but has proven to have been a good decision so far.

    Benefits:
    Don't have to drive 2 hours to and from work.
    Get 8 hours of sleep every night, I used to get 4.
    Get more exercise and eat better. I have lost 22 pounds since I made the switch.
    Work about the same hours on eBay as I did before, but don't have to put in 40 hours at another job on top of that.
    Work more efficiently, due to increased energy levels.
    Have seen an increase in net income, so much so that it exceeds the income from both sources prior.
    More time to spend doing other things around the house (garden, repairs, lawn care, and leisure time.
    Stress level decreased greatly when I left that job.
    It's still hard work, but it's more fun.

    Side effects:
    Had to go on my wife's insurance, though eBay does offer insurance options for powersellers. This is an added expense.
    Have a self employment 401K account in place, but there is no employer match.
    Have to pay higher income taxes as a self employed individual.
    It's still hard work, but it's more fun.
     
    Last edited: May 13, 2014


  12. suited

    suited Senior member

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    This is the case for me as well, but I can certainly understand the appeal of doing it full-time. For those of us who hit a small number of stores (at least in comparison to others), even just 2 or 3 stores changing their pricing could potentially devastate margins. Others like Wes are able to spread that risk out among a large number of stores.

    And for the guy who was calculating his profit, while I don't factor it into my profit I also place a premium on items I keep for myself. When you thrift a brand new $2,500 item that fits you, there is real value there that won't show up on your bottom line. This can translate into actual dollars if it's an item you would have otherwise needed to purchase from a retail store.
     


  13. FlorianQC

    FlorianQC Senior member

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    yeah but that's still 15$ I don't have to spend right now (and maybe 30$ if it gets to 100 free insertions fees soon). Considering my margins, I don't even make 100$ a week by doing that (so 15$ is still something ahah). I don't need the money but I like the hobby ;)
     


  14. ridethecliche

    ridethecliche Senior member

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    I think keeping that item has a much higher cost when you're doing it full time.

    That item could pay a month's rent or mortgage, but it's sitting in your closet and will be worn a few times a year instead.
     


  15. Shoeluv

    Shoeluv Senior member

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    Would eBay complain about this title

    Ermenegildo Zegna Multi-Color Geometric Printed Silk Tie Fells Like Liquid Sex
     


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