Inspired by J. Money at Budgets are Sexy, I have started keeping track of items that I’m selling on half.com and eBay. I’m not tracking the value of the item itself, as I firmly believe that if it’s something that I don’t need and no longer want, the value of the item is $0, and any money I can get for it is better than nothing. (Of course, that doesn’t mean that I’m willing to sell items for 50 cents – I do try to price based on the item’s value, but I also price to sell.)
Most of my sales have been books and other things that have been laying around my apartment for far too long, so we’re not talking high priced items. But after fees and shipping costs, I’ve made nearly $50 in the past month, just by selling off my “trash.” Of course, that’s nothing compared to what J’s been pulling in, but I’m not complaining.
I tend to put off listing items on eBay because I always feel like it will be so much work to post the item, even though I know it’s a very simple process – take a picture of the item, use eBay’s simple setup process, and post the auction. I need to remember this and start posting things more often.
My new plan is to start keeping a box in my closet of items that I think belong on eBay (or Craigslist or half.com) and then every month or so, take an hour and put up everything for sale. I won’t be pulling in a lot of money using this method, but it’s a great way to get rid of the things I don’t need and end up with a little extra cash in my pocket.
Megan is a 30-something government employee in the Washington, DC area. She got interested in Personal Finance when she got out of college and realized that her paycheck wasn’t going to go as far as she had hoped. Since starting this blog, she has managed to buy a house and make a solid start on her retirement goals, and hopes to help others do the same. Here is her story:
In 2007, I was a gainfully employed 20-something with no debt but not a lot of knowledge about personal finance. It was a co-worker’s comment about Roth IRAs that sent me to the internet, searching for information. It was then that I realized that I really didn’t know a whole lot about personal finance and that my current financial situation was due a lot to inherent frugal tendencies, generous family members, a fear of debt, and good luck. While that was working for me, clearly I needed a better plan.
While I had no debt, I was also pretty much living paycheck to paycheck and not worrying about going over budget (I say this as if I had a real budget) because I had an emergency fund set aside to cover any overages.
Except that’s not what an emergency fund is for.
So I did a lot of research, read a lot of blogs, and decided that I needed a plan. I needed to budget. I needed to know what I was spending my money on. I needed to prepare for the future.
I decided to create a blog not only to make myself accountable to others but also to share the knowledge that I gained along the way. I’ve learned so much from my fellow bloggers, and I hope that my readers can find something useful in what I have to share as well.