How to Sell Your Stuff on Craigslist

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Okay, so right out of the gate, I really need to say, I am probably the only person on the planet who is not a fan of craigslist. Something about meeting a total stranger in a Walmart parking lot to do a transaction feels sketchy. The HH loves craigslist, though. To date, he has bought a weight lifting set, a punching bag, and some sort of weird storage rack for the garage. {All of which I ended up donating to the Goodwill because they were absolutely dumb purchases. He felt bad not buying them during the meet-up, though, so he bought them anyway.}

SELLING your crap on craigslist is awesome, though, because you don’t have to pay shipping costs like you would on ebay, and you just never know, your crap can literally be the exact crap someone has been dreaming about.

Here are what I think are craigslist basics:

  1. Take pictures. No one wants to contact you just to get pictures you promised them “if they are interested.” Provide good quality pictures. Plain and simple.
  2. On the same picture topic, clean up the area around where you will snapping the photo. Yes, you may store the item in the garage, but if people see it amongst dust-laden items and on an oil-stained floor, they will automatically think it is dirty and used {which it might be, but there is absolutely no reason to advertise that.}
  3. Clean your item. You are getting rid of it for a reason, but make it look appealing. Dust it, vacuum it, spit shine it…whatever, just make it sparkle.
  4. Price it to sell. This is where it gets tricky in my opinion. Price it too high and you won’t get a single bite, price it too low and people will think something is wrong with it. Search for like items in your area and set your price accordingly.
  5. Write a good description of the item. Give details–not the bad ones, feel free to leave out: “the cat peed on it last week.” But provide details about how old the item is, if appropriate, why you are getting rid of it. Be real about the condition of the item too {i.e. “Not in perfect condition, but perfect for a college student”}.
  6. If possible, meet somewhere other than your home {in a neutral location–like a Walmart parking lot.} It keeps you safe.
  7. Provide a phone number. If you are serious about selling an item, don’t make it frustrating for the buyer, provide a phone number so that they don’t have to email, wait for your response, and potentially send follow-up questions. When you list your phone number, spell out some of the numbers, like call at 5-five-five-5-five-five,5–that way you don’t get put on some random computer generated spam calling list.
  8. You will get offensively low offers. It’s just what people do. Know your bottom line and don’t be afraid to let a sale pass you by. Say no, and wait for the right buyer to come along.
  9. #8 leads me to this little gem: never be in a hurry to sell something on craigslist. If you are, you will cave at the wrong price. Patience is key.
  10. Forget listing it, take it to the Goodwill and then pay yourself for your time you would’ve spent selling it. Ha! Kidding, but wouldn’t it be soooo much easier?

Happy sales,

~Mavis

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