Just Craigslist It
I have had a great deal of success selling things on Craigslist. Back when we first found out we were moving overseas, I sold over $1000 worth of stuff before the big pack-up. I’ve craigslisted everything from rugs to clothes to washers to cars. In fact, I listed our ’02 Civic mid-morning & had it sold that night – bam! You may consider me a craigslisting expert, if you like, and I will share my great wisdom with you. So, you’ve got something you don’t need anymore. You don’t want to donate it because it is still worth something. What next?
1. Research: always find & list the exact make, model, size, & color of everything. I always google the item & list what they could buy it for elsewhere, so they know they are getting a good deal. That’s also a good way to decide on a price if you aren’t sure.
2. Clean it up: present it to people in the best shape you can feasibly get it into.
3. Pictures: always include them & get the best shots you can. If I’m shopping on craigslist, I don’t even look at postings without pictures. Make it look good, & focus in on any important features. I’m pretty sure having a quality camera to take pictures with has been a major factor in selling our stuff. They can see it, & it looks good.
4. Details, details: as many as you can get/give. This will answer all of their questions, so they don’t have to contact you to ask. It may save you from answering the same questions again & again. For example: for the Honda, I copy-pasted the entire KBB run-down of features. I also included a link that showed the car’s varying colors & gave lots more features info – plus it listed a lowest price that was more than what I was asking.
5. Contact: if you are comfortable with it, list your phone number – it’s just easier. I always do & let them know that they can call or text me. A lot of people like to text; it is efficient, quick, & doesn’t make them have to awkwardly call a stranger. If you have specific call times, just list them.
6. Price: always list higher than you want or will take, but obviously stay reasonable. I mean, this is craigslist, not an antique store or something; the stuff you are selling is used. Anyway, leave them bargaining room; everyone loves a bargain. If your price is strict, just say so, & they’ll know not to mess around. If you’ll take whatever, say OBO.
7. Location: fill this part in, despite the fact that you are under a specific city’s page; give them a general idea of your area. It might help them make a decision if they know you are nearby or far away.
8. I’m not sure how to sub-title this, but basically, if it is something bigger, let them know if they will need to have the means to transport it or not.
9. Free stuff: people will probably jump all over it, so to save yourself from your phone blowing up like Ke$ha’s, include all the important details, where they can find it & when they can get it. Set your limits, so they don’t try to walk all over them.
Now let’s focus on safety while selling:
- Never put your full name or address in the add. First names & areas only. No information that can be related to your identity should never be included.
- Try to arrange public meeting places. If you have to do your house or theirs, be very cautious.
- Don’t go alone, if at all possible. Unfortunately, I’ve had to do some transactions solo. When that’s happened, I’ve had someone on the phone with me the entire time (usually on an earpiece), letting them know where I am going & who I am meeting.
- If you include your phone number, don’t use all digits. I can’t remember why, but someone told me to do this. It just seems reasonable. Say “oh” instead of zero or spell out a few numbers.
- Watch out for scams. Don’t ship anything – this isn’t ebay. Cash transactions only. If you get any weird sounding emails with outstanding circumstances (the buyer is blind or they are deployed) asking for special considerations – like shipping or money orders or other weird things, do not respond & forward them to craigslist’s reporting system. I have gotten them; they exist. Do not fall prey to someone’s scheme.
- You have every right to back out at any time if you aren’t comfortable. Something seems fishy – just nix it.
Most of all just use your common sense. There is no reason that you can’t safely, easily, & lucratively sell your extra stuff via craigslist. It has been a great tool for me to keep the excess under control during our frequent moves. Hope this was helpful & happy listing!