Money for Clutter--Craigslist is free & easy

Thrifty AccountantThe Thrifty Accountant Newsletter

--Two minutes of money saving strategies

 

Greetings fellow thrifty accountants!

Is there anyone out there who doesn't have things sitting around, that they'd like to get rid of? I know every time I turn around, it seems like stuff has materialized out of thin air....only to clutter up the place.

Being an accountant, I often look at this stuff, and think of how much I spent on it. Usually I take a carload of donations to Goodwill every so often (take the free course "Charitable Contributions" for guidelines on how to deduct these contributions), but it is nice to occasionally get cold hard cash instead of a deduction.

I recently placed some ads on Craigslist--and the items sold within a few hours! And how much does it cost to place an ad on Craigslist? Zip, zilch, nada (well maybe a few moments of your time). So here is what you can do to sell some excess inventory from around the house:

How to place an ad on Craigslist

1) Go to http://www.craigslist.com and click on your city (in the gray area on the right of the screen). Most major cities are represented, and more are being added all the time.

2) Next, click on the category for the item you wish to sell, under the "for sale" column (mid page). In my case, I clicked on "baby+kids" because I was selling a high chair and a jogging stroller.

3) Click on "post" in the upper right corner of the page. Then re-select your category.

4) Enter your ad: a title, price and location. The location is your suburb or part of town. Then enter a detailed description of your item and your email address. Thank goodness Craigslist anonymizes your email address so you won't get a lot of spam. I didn't seen any increase in spam from my ads.

5) Click on "add images" button to add up to four images. No doubt about it, all items will sell better with photos.

6) You will receive a confirmation email, after you submit your ad. You get a chance to review your ad, then you submit it as finalized.

THAT'S IT!

I've sold several items and met some interesting people

I received emails within hours of posting my ad, from people wishing to buy my jogging stroller and high chair. I emailed back my address, we set up a time to meet, and they came buy and bought the items.

I even met some interesting people--one family was adopting a toddler from Morocco and the other family were missionaries in Canada. So try it--if your item doesn't sell, you can delete your ad and place a new one with a different price and/or description.

May 2006 | Issue #005