Make some money at consignment sales

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We have all heard it before: Having kids costs a small fortune. They seem to outgrow clothes and toys faster than you can buy them!

When I confronted the mountain of outgrown items in my house, I decided to try out an increasingly popular moneymaking idea: children’s consignment sales.

These sales differ from traditional consignment shops in that they usually happen two or three times per year in a given community, and they allow sellers to keep a larger portion of their total sales. I learned a lot from my first two children’s consignment sales. Here is what to do beforehand to help you make the most money on the day.

You need to consider how much you have to sell. Before you commit to being a vendor at a consignment sale, you need to make sure you have enough items to make it worth your while. It does take a little effort to be a vendor, but if you have a lot of items to sale, you can make a decent amount of money.

When you know exactly what you plan to sell, start organizing it. Make sure you have all the clothing sets together, toys that are still in good working order and shoes with their mates. Most consignment sales are during a certain time of the year, such as spring/summer and fall/winter, so consider that when you gather your items. Also, make sure you consider if the item will sell at all. A nearly unworn pair of jeans or clean baby toys, perfect! Clothes with holes or stains, not so much.

When you get your items together make sure you clean them. You’ll get more money for items if they’re in good shape and freshly washed and ironed.

I just hung up the stuff I was going to sell and went over it with a steamer before folding it neatly into a paper bag. If you’re missing buttons, parts, laces and pieces, it’s best to just donate the gear instead. Check over your items for stains and other marks, since consignment shops will probably decline marked and worn-looking items. It can be tedious work, but it will pay off in the end.

The next big thing to remember is to follow the rules of the sale. I have heard of people being turned away for failing to hang their items correctly. Once I saw a woman turned away because she did not have her items sorted by both size and gender. You can also be turned away for not listing a brand name when tagging your items, not cleaning items properly, or trying to sell items not allowed.

For example, used mattresses are a big no-no. I saw a family bring in three and heard them explain they had cleaned them well. However, the rules clearly state what can and cannot be sold. Some sales have a certain focus: clothing only or infant/toddler items only. Just stick to the rules, and you will be fine.

The people running these sales take their rules very seriously.

Of course, no one is going to get rich by selling old stuff at consignment sales. If you are strapped for cash or you want to do some shopping yourself, consignment sales can help feed your habit on the cheap.

There are different ways to pay out. You can collect your money or use it as a sale credit. One of the biggest benefits to selling is that you get to shop that first day before the public picks through everything.

Before you go spend a fortune on things for your children, check out these consignment sales and get a bargain!

Happy savings!