How I Use Goodwill to Make Cash on the Side

This time of year is tough going for the construction industry. Jobs slow down, we get laid off, and we just have to wait until mid-January or February for things to pick back up. But I still have a family to feed. And so I still need money. And I get that money with little side jobs and through the use of Goodwill.

Do I actually work at Goodwill during the slow times? No.

I comb through their art, housewares, and tools for things they’re underselling. I buy them and then turn right around and sell them on Ebay, Craigs List, or at a pawn shop.

Now don’t go getting in your head that this is something you should start doing tomorrow because here’s the sticking spot: You’ve got to know what you’re doing! Otherwise you’ll end up with a $50 painting from Goodwill that no one will buy on Ebay. Or a $10 hammer from Goodwill that someone will offer you $2 for on Craig’s List.

But if you know anything about art, tools, metals, or housewares, then seriously dudes, head over to Goodwill immediately. I go probably once a week.

This past time I found this:

Making Cash From Goodwill

Now I don’t actually know what it is but that doesn’t matter. Because it’s silver. And that’s what’s valuable about this doodad. So I bought this unknown silver thing for $3 at Goodwill. I drove down the street to a pawn shop and they bought it for $90. Nice little profit for 15 minutes of work.

If you know what you’re looking for or what’s valuable, you’d be surprised what Goodwill sells that is underpriced – so head on over and make some cash off of other peoples’ cast offs!

 General Note About Not Being Dumb: Make sure you know what’s valuable. Never buy something at Goodwill because it looks like it should be sold for more. You have to know that it’s worth more.


How I Use Goodwill to Make Cash on the Side — 26 Comments

  1. That is amazing…and quite a nice bit of profit for a few minutes of time it took you to do it! What you are doing is very smart, but then you know what you are doing. You are right. There’s no point getting into this if you have no clue what’s valuable or not. But good for you!
    Plowing Through Life (Martha) recently posted..MoochersMy Profile

    • Yeah, it’s pretty great and I do well with it for some side money. I admit in my earlier years to buying one or two things that weren’t worth jack…but I learned quickly.

    • Haha, it took me years to learn what was worth what. And when I’m in doubt sometimes, I’ll use my phone in the store and look up the item on ebay. If it’s selling on ebay, I’ll grab it and sell it myself!

  2. HOly MACKerel! You got $90 for that…whateveritis? What a coup! Now…let’s just hope we don’t see the darned thing on Antiques Roadshow next week… 😉

    My favorite former neighbors had a kind of rolling yard-sale road show going on. They would throw a big yard sale about every three months, and yes, they sure did know what they were doing. They knew what things would sell for, and they knew how to find stuff people would buy.

    They’d go around to other yard sales and buy things very low. And the wife told me they would prowl the alleys just before trash pickup and nab perfectly good stuff people left out — free merchandise! She said the stuff sold every time.

    I imagine you could craigslist everything instead of going to the trouble to mount a yard sale…what is Craig’s List, anyway, if not a digital yard sale?

    Do you live anywhere near a college with dorms? Frugal Scholar once blogged that at the end of spring term, kids living in dorms would throw out everything they didn’t want to take home — including books and furniture. She said she often picked up books that had never even been opened. She would sell them on Amazon. Since they were free for the taking, she made a nice little profit on them.
    Funny about Money recently posted..Less I$ MoreMy Profile

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