How To Sell Your Stuff {An Odd Pre-Black Friday Post}

How-to-Sell-Your-Stuff-great-tips-for-selling-items-via-Craigslist-Ebay-Facebook-or-Garage-Sales-and-for-knowing-which-one-to-use

Yes, I admit that it’s super ironic and a bit funny that Black Friday is this week and I’m writing a post on how to get rid of stuff. {chuckle!} But this year after making the decision to leave our home months ago to live on the road full time, if there is one thing I know how to do well, it is minimize and get rid of stuff!

Next to how we make a living on the road, the next most asked question I get from those aspiring to minimize their lives so that they can be free to hit the road full-time is:

How do I even begin to go about getting rid of all our belongings?

Trust me, I get it. Just the thought alone of figuring out what to do with all the you’ve stuff collected over years of time is monumental and overwhelming. But let me promise you, it can be done. I know because I did it in 3 months mostly by myself as my husband worked away from home out of town.

And if you’re planning to sell your home and live on the road full-time for more than a year or two, in my opinion it’s something that should be done.

When we decided to go let go of our home and live on the road full time for a few years, there are a couple of reasons we sold our belongings instead of hanging onto them. *with the exception of a few sentimental, heirloom pieces and the necessities we took with us.

  • It made no sense to waste money for monthly storage fees on stuff that is not currently serving a purpose and won’t be for at least a few years.
  • Almost nothing we buy is brand new (including clothes) and we have never financed anything inside of our home, so everything in it could be easily replaced without feeling as though we had lost money. ALL of our furniture been been purchased from resale shops, Craigslist or handed down to us.
  • Tastes and style trends change over time, so when we decide to settle down again we know that we will enjoy the thrill of the hunt in decorating a new place with treasures we like at that current time. Part of the fun to me is making any new space reflect our tastes as a family!

So here are a few pointers on HOW we sold 90% of our possessions before we left out for our new life of wide open spaces in our RV, and how you can do it too!

1. Images – VERY IMPORTANT: Take pictures of all individual items you’d like to sell or give away with your camera or smartphone. (group smaller items together) This will give you your “inventory” of all that you are getting rid of and will help you a great deal in selling things so that you don’t have to have eighteen yard sales to get it all gone! No matter where you are going to list things, posts with images and honest descriptions SELL. Listings of any kind without images don’t get much attention because people won’t take the time to inquire about something they can’t see right then and there.

2. Facebook – Most people have never thought about Facebook as a tool to be able to sell their stuff. However, I did it and it was by far THE most effective tool we used in getting rid of our stuff. Here’s how I did it. Once I had taken all my pictures with my camera phone I went to my own profile and “created an album”. I named ours “ENTIRE HOUSE SELL – PLEASE BUY OUR STUFF!!!!” Then I uploaded each item’s image along with a clear, written description of what the item was and the asking price.

2. Craigslist – This is an obvious one that works about 40% of the time. Though not a sure fire way to get it all gone, it’s worth using. I created individual posts for large items and put pictures of grouped items in separate posts of their own. Of course you’ll need to be careful about how you deal with people of course as Craigslist can be sketchy.

3. Ebay – Personally, this is least favorite way to sell items of this sort and one I did not choose to use. But it does work if you’re willing to deal with online buyers and going to the post office to ship items.

3. Local Yard sale sites – Most cities have a local yard sale site or local sell/trade Facebook groups. They are invaluable and you can or course upload images of your items when you post to them. Just be sure and abide by the rules of the site you are using so you don’t get kicked out.  😉

4. Yard sales – We had 2 very large yard sales that were both huge successes. My feelings about what made our yard sales work well was in how we advertised. I advertised our yard sales (with images) daily for up to 2-3 days before the event on Craigslist, Facebook, local yard sale/trade & sell sites and even local homeschool groups. (everyone knows homeschoolers love great deals on just about anything!)

  • The other two suggestions for successful yard sales are location and size. If you don’t live in a easily trafficked, visible location, consider moving your yard sale location to a place in which people will be more prone to traffic it. Also, if you don’t have many items to sell but still have some things to get rid of, consider combining yard sales with a few other families. Big yard sales always attract lots more shoppers!

5. Open House Sell – This is sort of like an estate sell, except luckily, you don’t have to be dead to have one. An open house sell is just a sale in which you set a specific time and date to open up your home to friends, family and the general public if you wish. Again, advertising is the key to making any event like this successful. Also, images in the your advertising so that they at least have a preview of some of the things that will be available are a great idea to peak their desire to take the time to drive out to your home to look around! Advertise this the same as you would a normal yard sale.

6. Charity – If you’ve even wished you could give more, this is THE perfect opportunity to bless the single mom down the road, or give unneeded toys to a family who couldn’t afford them otherwise. Consider boxing up some items just for the sake of giving away, or invite a family over and let them go through your things with you and pick things they could use and let them have it for a discounted price or maybe even for free! Letting some of your things go for free isn’t something you’ll regret I promise you. It feels amazing.

7. Technology – I did not run the roads constantly putting up signs or beating down doors to get rid of our stuff. My tools of choice were my camera phone and the internet’s social media sites, period. If you have them, use them. They work! You’ll save yourself a lot of miles, time and frustration.

It’s been months since I’ve thought about all the things we sold/gave away and to be completely honest I can’t think of one single item that I lie awake at night wishing we still had. It was all just stuff, and you know what? While we certainly enjoyed them while we had them, none of it makes our lives better in the end.

And although, yes, I DO have my moments when I miss having a big spacious house, we are also enjoying the freedom of living light right now. It’s a bit of a trade off. And honestly it just comes down to what you’re family decides is most important to you at this time in your life.

And so while the rest of the world pushes and shoves each other down to save a few bucks on next years garage sale items, here’s our little family wishing many blessings to you and yours on your journey to living a much lighter, freer kind of life!

Own less, live fully, travel light. 

*Please feel free to leave me additional questions or your own suggestions in the comments below!

About Rachel Rowell

A true southern gal at heart, Rachel was raised and lives in the deep south and spends her days raising her own babies, writing, making music, reading out on the front porch, and cooking supper for her family to sit around the table and enjoy together at nights! Her ultimate girlhood dream was to raise a family in a house just like "Anne of Green Gables" and now she is living her dream and inspiring others along the way.

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7 Responses to How To Sell Your Stuff {An Odd Pre-Black Friday Post}

  1. stephie galanis November 24, 2013 at 10:04 pm #

    u rachaeal r so right im looking into consignment and another sale imade 190lady year snd i still havr STUFF i too want gone kiss anthony and kids ps mike a homeless fella asked for u when i brought them food gloves and prayer i miss uhappy thankgiving guys ps i so understand all our conversations we had ..

  2. DeWain November 25, 2013 at 1:18 am #

    Excellent, well written post. My wife and I would have this problem (getting rid of stuff). We are 63 and 55 respectively, and I have to admit we have a LOT of stuff. I do think, however, we have an even larger stumbling block: being away from our nearly 3-year-old granddaughter. Do you have close family that you are missing while on the road? If so, how are you dealing with it?

  3. John Lamb November 25, 2013 at 4:34 am #

    Well said! It really doesn’t matter or mean much just how much “stuff” you have and accumulate through the years. In the end, its all just, well, “stuff! Three years ago when I embraced minimalism and moved from a 3 bedroom/2 bath house with 2 car garage and into a 6 x 12 cargo trailer, I got rid of a whole bunch of stuff!! And, you know what? I haven’t missed a single bit of it and have not once regretted my decision! I have a roof over my head, a bed to sleep in, clothes to wear, food to eat, money to spend, and a vehicle to drive and for a guy 59.5 years old am in really good health! I have everything I want, and need. Less IS more!

  4. Kirsty Halliday November 25, 2013 at 4:40 pm #

    Great inspiration! I left a 10×10 storage unit behind in Philadephia 5 months ago. I’m still over 2500 miles from it, have decided I want to full time for a couple years and now wishing the unit would just vanish…especially as they just raised the price to $150pcm (incl insurance). I had just two weeks between leaving work, moving out of apartment and hitting the road, so there’s a lot of unedited stuff in there! It’s time to book a cheap air miles flight back and deal with it face to face once and for all. In the meantime, I’m working at Amazon staring daily at the hoardes of stuff that other people are about to buy! Though maybe Amazon can help me sell my books!!

  5. Bliss Cat November 25, 2013 at 7:52 pm #

    We got rid of maybe 3/4 of our stuff this year. The rest is in a 10′ x10′ storage unit. We’re hibernating for the winter in a rental home and some things I really do miss–all my knitting stuff, sewing stuff, pots and pans. Oh and I didn’t bring enough sweaters and coats with me! We’re debating moving all our stuff nearby, which is where we want to settle eventually anyway, or buying new stuff. Thrifting doesn’t work so well for me, since I’m a plus size.

    Don’t forget freecycle.org. I always had less flaky people than on Craigslist. I love the freedom of less stuff!

  6. Selena December 18, 2013 at 7:33 pm #

    Awesome! We did the same thing…liquidated everything we couldn’t use or take with us! We started selling things off on Craigslist 8 months before we bought the RV, and almost paid for the RV with the $ from selling our stuff. Started by looking at excess furniture that we didn’t use much, cleaning out closets, and figuring out what would be useful ahead of time. On the final weekend before the move, we had an open house sale, advertised on Craigslist and around our home, and sold off almost everything in 5 hours. Anything left went to charity. I have a bedroom set that is an antique family heirloom, so rather than store it, I found a family member who wasn’t attached to her spare bedroom set, helped her sell hers, and now she uses mine until some day I decide to buy a house and use it again (could be never!). I will offer to buy her a new set when that day comes, still a much better deal than paying storage fees for years on end. The hard part of liquidating came when I had to thin out blankets, quilts, and sentimental items. Most of my blankets are hand made by my grandmothers, and I did not feel good about just giving these away to anyone. So I again found family members who said they would like them, and I gave any I didn’t have room for to them. This process was so freeing! We never realize how attached we are to stuff, and how much we really don’t need it until we rid ourselves of it!

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