Estimated reading time: 17 minutes
Want to sell your used clothing for the best price? Discover how to price your items before listing them for sale and maximize your earnings.
If second-hand shops can hike the price for used clothing donations, then you should save yourself the trip, sell your stuff, and pocket the extra cash.
Low-Cost Fashion For A Fraction Of The Cost
Even the intelligent, frugal shopper knows that some second-hand shops sell overpriced clothing, so if you want to sell, price your used clothing right!
Not everyone wants to make money from their used clothing for various reasons, but if you’re going to pocket some cash, don’t delay posting a for-sale ad today.
That’s my radio jingle of the day, lol.
Seriously though, for those who have sorted through your closets, dressers, and boxes of old clothes, let me show you how to sell them for the best price.
Pricing used clothing is like selling a house; it can sell quickly or spend some time on the market waiting for the right buyer.
If you price your clothing too high, it likely won’t sell unless it’s a unique, limited, or hard-to-find item. Same with a house.
Negotiations almost always come into play with all buyers, but if they don’t choose to negotiate, they want the item.
This is to your advantage because it’s out the door, cash in hand, and requires no effort.
Perhaps you might make extra money if more than one buyer is interested in what you are selling.
Used clothing wars vs. House wars, same concept.
When you sell just about anything, the key is to over-price by a bit to see who will bite and then go from there with pricing.
Overprice Used Clothing Items
Why should you slightly over-price used clothing?
You already know that most buyers will try to drop the price by $5-$15.
Most often, it’s around the $5 mark, depending on your original price.
If you raise the price for used clothing by a few dollars, then you can be assured of getting what you want after negotiation.
When there is no negotiation, you make more money than anticipated.
The same thing happens when you sell a house.
Some of the pricing problems used clothing sellers face are common because of the lack of experience and product knowledge.
Not everyone buys the clothing they are selling as used clothing, so they tend to “guess” at a reasonable price instead of researching the items.
The clothing might have come from gifts or hand-me-downs, so the original price is unknown.
Often, when you are not close to a computer, you can tell if an article of used clothing is worth the price.
Look at the material, name brand, and shape the clothing is in to make your decision.
The good part is you can typically return used clothing purchased from most second-hand shops for an in-store credit.
Prices for used clothing differ depending on where you buy it, and for all you know they got it on sale, which means nothing to you.
Your focus is always on the retail price without a sale price.
If you compare prices by visiting a website that sells the same item, you will get an estimated cost to use as a starting point.
It sounds like lots of work; however, if you want to buy or sell used clothing and don’t want to over-pay or under-sell yourself then you need to know the prices.
Worst case scenarios:
- You price the used clothing too high, and it doesn’t sell
- You price the used clothing too low, and it sells, but you miss out on earning potential
5 Tips For Selling Used Clothing From Home
As parents, we have been given many baby clothes as gifts in the past two years.
We’ve also bought our son many new and used clothing articles.
Over the years, we’ve sold our used clothing and now our sons and learned valuable lessons to close the deal when selling clothes.
1. Price Research
If you want top dollar, you need to know everything about the used clothing you are selling.
As I stated earlier, research online is your best bet, and stick to retail prices, not sale prices.
Once you know the retail price, you should inspect the used clothing to make final pricing decisions.
Specialty clothing costs significantly more than Walmart, Giant Tiger, or Zellers clothing.
Typically, these items sell for higher prices in boutique shops, malls, or independent stores.
- Brand names
- Maternity used clothes
- Plus-sized used clothes
- Petite used clothes
- Tall and short used clothes
- Custom-made Clothing
When my wife was pregnant with our son, we went to Thyme Maternity, and the prices blew us away.
You’ll pay the price if you work in an office or want to be in style with your maternity clothes.
Most of these designer and specialty shops offer coupons and deals as well.
The choice is yours, but sometimes it’s difficult to find specific clothing based on various body shapes and sizes, so used clothing might be tricky.
When you do find it, if a seller prices it right, you can score a great deal.
Buyers must understand their potential customers and come up with a marketing plan.
Know Where To Advertise
You can also search where you plan to advertise your used clothing for similar pieces in comparable condition to see how much they sell.
It’s important to know what your competitors believe their used clothing is worth so you don’t price too high or too low.
The only setback to this tactic is that the others might randomly be pricing their used clothes, which could ultimately drive your price up or down.
See, it’s comparable to buying a house.
When you list the price and the buyer asks you to negotiate keep in mind the numbers you’d like to get for the used clothing.
How far are you willing to bargain if someone wants to buy in bulk?
Selling Used Clothing Through Email
When dealing with a buyer via email, please do your best to solidify the sale and price online before they come to the house or a meeting place.
If a buyer comes to your house and wants to buy three big boxes of baby clothes that you have priced at $20 each but wants a deal, then knock $5 off each box or $10 off the entire sale.
Smile when you offer the negotiated price and see what happens.
You can negotiate or wait for a full-priced buyer or higher bidder.
Clothing can be a hard sell, especially with second-hand shops offering 50% off days or various other discount cards.
You don’t have this option; most buyers know their prices and what they are up against for comparison.
They are there to save, and you are there to make money.
If you plan to hold a garage sale, forget the above tips and price it all cheap to get rid of it.
No one will buy your used clothing if you have outrageous prices at a garage sale.
I’ve seen people tell buyers to stuff a bag for x amount of dollars or give used clothing a dollar or two price tag, and that’s it.
Sell, Sell, Sell is the game’s name at a garage sale.
Related: How to buy and sell at a garage sale
2. Inspect Used Clothing
Some of the things you will want to look for when you are selling used clothing are;
- No tags
- Fabric pulls
- Burn marks
- Colour Fading
- Pet Hair
- Bed Bugs
- Missing Pieces
In most cases, you’re better off donating the clothing to someone who can use it or to community centers that offer it for free.
3. Bundle Clothing
Buyers love to purchase boxes full of clothing filled to the brim.
The best way is to bundle everything into seasons or brand names along with appropriate sizing.
You will sell a bundle of clothing faster if you have each lot the same size.
If you bundle sizing with the brand name, you can score even more money or have more negotiating power.
When selling baby clothes, filling a diaper box full of seasonal clothing by size and brand works well.
We price each article and then add it to create a base amount.
Most buyers only want to spend one dollar or less per article of baby clothing.
Bundle by Fashion Brand
If you have used clothing such as Roots, Baby Gap, or other name brands, sell them individually.
You won’t get near the amount of money you can if you put them in a bundle.
I’ve seen sellers of men’s and women’s clothing who stuff garbage bags full of clothing with mixed brand names and sell the bag.
Remember that the buyer won’t be trying it all at such a price when you do this. The bag accordingly.
You may lose money this way, but if you are strapped for time, it’s easier to bag it and get it out of the house for cheap.
Never Open Your Home
When you sell by piece, be prepared that buyers may want to use your washroom to try it on.
I wouldn’t suggest going into someone’s home to try on used clothing, but it happens.
As a seller, I’d never let anyone in my home unless it was to see a product, but I’d also have other people present.
You can advertise the used clothing purchase “as is” without trying it on.
Meet at a public place where the buyer can go into a restroom and try it on.
Some police stations in Ontario offer safe spots where you can buy and sell without worry, but there are no change rooms as they are outdoors.
With baby clothes and children’s clothing, the sizing is straightforward, so you won’t have to get the kids to try anything on.
In the worst case, you resell any used clothing you buy that doesn’t fit or look right because you can’t return it.
Some sellers are more than happy to have you take the used clothing home to try on, and if it doesn’t fit, they will allow you to return it.
This doesn’t happen often, so be warned that you’ve bought it once you pay.
4. Photography Skills
You don’t need a state-of-the-art DSLR Nikon camera to take photos of your used clothing, but you do need to add a bit of flair to your photos.
If you are taking photos of your used clothing, you must ensure they are clear.
When using your smartphone to take photos, use the focus option and snap when you see a clear pic.
Try to eliminate all the background noise, such as furniture, kids, and pets, by focusing on what you are selling.
A lovely, bright room is often the best way to get a clear photo.
Hold your hand steady and focus, focus, focus.
Used clothing staging will help you sell pieces faster when you add style to the environment.
Sometimes, if we have elegant pieces of furniture in the house and set stuff next to it that we are selling as house staging, the item sells faster.
You’re not being unfair since you’re a seller trying to appeal to potential buyers.
If you have a dummy or know someone who might lend it, you can showcase your clothing this way.
It makes it easier to photograph and for the buyer to get a better look at it.
You shouldn’t need to edit your photos because you want them to be as original as possible.
Don’t waste your and the buyer’s time using Photoshop to make your photos appear brighter, cleaner, and in a newer condition when they might not be.
5. Advertising Expertise
Think about buying a house and how important the two or three paragraphs you or the realtor describe your home are.
Home buyers will read that description and, in part, decide whether they want to view your home.
The same goes for selling used clothing online.
Your subject has to be catchy, clean, and to the point.
The body of your ad must contain all the essential information along with the general pick-up area.
The more you add enthusiasm to your advertisement, the more likely buyers will be attracted to read more about the used clothing you are selling.
Always be upfront in your ads and label them with smoke-free, pet-free, smoking home, and pet-friendly (name the types of pets) so the buyer is aware.
Some people are highly allergic to pets, so be fair and let them know.
There’s always a buyer…well, almost always.
Overall, you may feel uncomfortable selling used clothing if you don’t know how to price it or negotiate prices, but keep in mind your end goal.
If you don’t want the money, you can sell used clothes cheaply, donate them, or pass them down to family and friends with a smile.
Discussion Question: How do you price your used clothing when you sell it?
Please leave your comments below.
CBB Inside Scoop
Most of my free time this week was spent spray painting a second-hand Lightning McQueen bed for our son so we could work on getting him into his bedroom.
It was a great price, and we could quickly sell it for double or triple what we paid down the road as long as it’s still in decent shape.
Boys can be rough with their stuff; our son is no exception.
We have a bucket of broken stuff I either need to glue or try to fix for him, and he’s only 2.
On Thursday, I spent a couple of hours at the park with our son, making huge piles of leaves and jumping in them while the wife was at the doctor’s.
We had so much fun when we picked her up.
He was sparked out, haha! Having someone one-on-one with him was excellent, as I don’t often get that.
That was my fun-filled week!! I know it’s exciting, but it’s fun to be a parent.
I can do all these cool things again without looking like a silly adult at the park.
CBB Published Posts
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Top Post This Week:
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Weekly Fan Brag
If you have a brag that you want to share, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org with a photo and a small write-up of your deal.
It can be anything you saved money on that you are excited about.
If your story gets featured, you get two ballots in the yearly draw for a PC Financial Gift Card and at least one ballot for emailing me your entry.
Either way, you get a ballot in the draw.
Check out this fantastic deal from CBB fan Colleen.
Spotlight on Finance
You can always make more money, but you only have a set number of days to make more memories.
Making money is essential to just about everyone, but when it becomes more of an obsession and takes away from your life, you become unbalanced.
You can’t get time back, so make those memories and earn money, but know when enough is enough.
Top Finance Post
I stumbled upon the personal finance blog Miss Mazuma, a flight attendant who shares the story of her savings and why her savings rate is so high.
This was an easy read, with laughs along the way.
I look forward to reading more from this blogger, who makes me jealous of all the cheap and free flights she gets worldwide.
If I were her, I’d keep getting those $6 massages in Thailand. I know; I had a few myself when I was there.
Frugal Recipe Box
Food is a big part of any budget, so creating frugal recipes for my fans is essential.
I have a second Facebook page called The Free Recipe Depot, where I exclusively share recipes from Food Bloggers worldwide.
Check out the Free Recipe Index on CBB, which is compiled of frugal recipes 100% tested and accepted by family and friends!
This week, I stopped by the blog Some the Wiser by Allison Ruth, a single mother of four who loves cooking and baking.
I instantly thought about my wife when I saw these dreamy Cinnamon Roll Muffins because I knew she would love it if I could whip up a low-carb version.
I’d sink my teeth into Allison’s recipe first to get an idea of what I’m looking for in terms of taste and texture. It’s delicious, for sure.
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You MUST check these Hot Cocoa Mix Ornaments Christmas DIY projects at the blog Sprinkle Some Fun by the lovely Rachel Rockwell.
She’s a mom of 5 children and loves crafts, and it shows with this pretty cool idea that you can give away as a gift during the holidays.
It is a wonderful frugal idea for the crafty CBB fans out there.
Search Term Giggles
Always begin and end your day with a SMILE!- Mr.CBB
Every week, I get thousands of people to visit the Canadian Budget Binder because they did a search online and found my blog.
Most times funny, Sometimes serious.
- Would you buy peanut butter from a dollar store? – Yes and No because waiting for a grocery sale and stocking up is likely cheaper than at the Dollar Store. However, if you can’t wait, just read the label.
- When You’re Poor– Oops, you seem to have said “You’re” twice.
- Can coupons expire in Canada?– Could you imagine if they didn’t? Yes, almost all do unless marked No Expiry.
- How to make a bit of money fast?– Bring back your empties!
- Does Food Basics have PC Points– Um, No, but if you use your PC Master Card, you will get points.
That’s all the fun for this week; thanks for dropping by, and we’ll see you all again next Saturday!
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