Monday, April 21, 2014

eBaying Our Way to St. Louis!

With our parents, siblings, grown children, and little grands spread out between Kansas City, Chicago, Northern Indiana and Southern Indiana, we have to create situations where we can all get together to visit.  It's important that our grown kids get to see their grandparents every year.  And that the great grandparents get to see their little great grands every year.  We not only have distance separating us, but different work situations and careers...we have a youth pastor, teacher, cafe manager, and more.  Finding time when everyone we can take off work is a challenge, too.

So this past winter, we were able to coordinate dates and pick 3 days to meet up for a family gathering.  We chose St. Louis as our place to meet, as it is centrally located and has so much for families to do!  We found a house to rent for us and our grown kids, and the other family members will stay in a nearby hotel.  So with a location and some dates chosen, the next step was to pay for this shindig!  :)  With our youngest son having expensive dental and orthodontic work done, and my husband gazelle-intense on saving for retirement, I wanted to get creative with the finances of this trip.

About the same time, my husband and I began cleaning out some closets.  We normally donate everything to Goodwill and take a tax credit from it.  This time, however, we kind of hated to just give away some of the nicer items.  Just for kicks, we listed 2 things on eBay. This was our first time to try to sell anything on eBay...we just kind of learned as we went.  But we were totally shocked that our son's Nike basketball shoes sold for $28.  And REALLY surprised that the old dvd series I bought for $2 at a garage sale some years back, sold for $43!  We were hooked!

Since then, I have been systematically going through the house, looking for things that we don't need, that might sell on eBay.  And my goal in all of this is that I might pay for most of our St. Louis trip by this method.  I've had good success with selling dvds, children's books, homeschool curriculum, and name brand clothing.  We've sold a Vietnam War mess kit my mom found in their new house's attic, a miniature tea set, and the graphing calculator that our older kids used for a bit in high school.

Some sales are just $1.99 plus shipping.  Our largest sale has been the dvd series and the graphing calculator for $57 plus shipping.  A friend told us that he recently made $250 by selling his too-large Big and Tall men's shirts on eBay.  He said they sell like hotcakes.  So when I came upon some nice, name brand B&T men's shirts at a garage sale for $1 each, I took a chance and bought 2.  After listing them a week ago, I was tickled to sell them for $5.99 and $7.50 each plus shipping.

Mostly we have just sold our own items.  So the $464.00 we've made since January, is purely 'found' money.  Our house is losing weight...and our paypal account is gaining weight!

I just wanted to share this fun story with you, in case you want to make some extra cash right from the comfort of your own home.  I'm making about $100 a month, and not spending much time at it at all.  I'm hoping to have $600 by the time we go on our trip...that will pay for our lodging and gas, at least.  Since I'm a stay-at-home Mom, homeschool teacher, and Etsy shop owner, I find particular joy in helping out financially without having to leave home and go to a job.

Inspired?  Already an eBay seller?  Would love to hear your story, too!

Be Blessed,

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