It’s fairly conventional knowledge by now that you can make money by getting rid of your old stuff…
“One man’s trash is another man’s treasure,” as they say.
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But making money for your old stuff can also be largely contextual.
Do you live in an area where you can hold a successful garage sale?
Do you live within distance of people who collect the kind of stuff you have?
Even if you find buyers online, the shipping costs can go sky-high.
So how are you supposed to make money off your old stuff?
Let me tell you about Amazon’s Trade-In Program, a service that makes it easy to make money off of your old stuff with just a quick trip to the post office.
An Overview of Amazon Trade-In
Let’s be clear about the benefits of the Amazon Trade-In program: they will give you a free shipping label and pay you in return for your old goods, which they’ll then resell for a higher price.
It’s a quick and easy service that is mutually beneficial; there really isn’t any catch!
Provided that your items have been kept in good condition, you can trade in goods in the following categories:
- Video Games
Considering that a lot of us already keep our media stored digitally, clearing out your DVD or CD collection might be a good way to make a quick couple bucks.
It’s all the benefit of a garage sale without the hassle!
Notes About the Trade-In Program
Before I tell you all about the way the trade-in program works, there are a few important things to point out about the way that it operates.
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Luckily, most of the notes we need to make are positive things – the Amazon Trade-In program is very user friendly and can be done by the young and old alike.
With that in mind, let’s consider these things:
1. Returns on your item cost NOTHING
That means that if you ship off an item that’s too dirty or too damaged, and it’s not up to their standards, they will ship it back to you without charging you anything. It more or less removes all of the risk of engaging in the Trade-In program, since you will just get your item back with no penalty.
2. The original place that you bought the item from DOES NOT matter
You might have assumed that you needed to have purchased the items from Amazon initially, but that’s not the case– they’re happy to accept items from any retailer.
3. You DO NOT need to be an Amazon Prime member
Now they do ask that participants be above the age of 18, but if you’re an adult who wishes for their child to learn about sales and shipping, you can always just sign up using your information and then help them with the process. They’re quite loose with the restrictions in this regard.
4. There are no hidden fees
Although you may receive your items back in a different container that you shipped them in. For the most part, this is a positive thing – it means that you are only expending your boxes and tape as a cost for shipping. If you highly prize your boxes, though, you may consider that to be the lone fee involved in all of this.
5. You are limited to only 2 trades on any identical items per 3 months
In other words, you can’t trade-in a dozen of the same item at once; Amazon isn’t interested in huge amounts of duplicate items. So if you’re camping out some great deal somewhere with the intention of trading it all in, keep in mind that it’s going to take you a while.
How Does Amazon Trade-In Pay You?
This is perhaps the most important thing to note about the way that you earn money through Amazon Trade-In: you get free Amazon gift cards.
It is a very fantastic reward, in its own right- almost everything can be purchased through Amazon, and it’s almost as good as hard cash.
But you won’t be paying your bills with it, so keep that in mind.
If you absolutely need solid cash in return for your items, then you’ll be wanting to find a different way to sell the goods in question.
How to Sell Your Stuff Through Amazon Trad-In
It’s almost the same as selling stuff via any other platform minus the hassle and headache of dealing with customers.
Here is what you need to do…
1. Look Through the Trade-In Store
Before you even go about gathering up the stuff around your house, do a quick look through the Amazon trade-in store to get a feel for the type of stuff they’re looking for at the moment.
You might have some old clubs on that high shelf in your garage…
But it’s worth checking their cost before you go digging them out!
2. Collect All Your Items
This is the time for you to go gather up all the stuff that you intend to sell.
Video games, books, and movies are the usual targets here – but also look for other kinds of media such as text books, tools such as MP3 players, or even video game accessories.
Gather up all the stuff you don’t want and double-check the price on the store, now you can get a feel for what you’re going to actually ship off.
3. Get Your Shipping Label
After you click through all the steps on the Amazon trade-in store, you can get to the part where you print your shipping label.
While printing can be a bit of a drag, this step is of vital importance; this is how you get the shipping for free!
So print that shipping label off for either USPS or UPS, and then box up all your stuff.
4. Ship Your Item
It’s important to send your item as quickly as you can, since the demand on the Trade-In store is subject to change.
Amazon will email you to let you know when the item was received and the condition it was in. This is also the point where you’ll find out if your item is up to snuff, and whether or not you’ll be compensated.
As noted above, you’ll have your item returned at no cost if it’s not up to their standards.
5. Get Paid
The best part of the whole process!
If your item is acceptable, the credit will be put straight into your Amazon account and you can purchase whatever goods you like.
Quick, easy, and cheap.
Why You Should Trade Your Unwanted Things via Amazon Trade-In
I’d like to take a second to give you an example of when you might want to take advantage of the Trade-In program, because I think this is a situation that we’ve all been in before:
You’re starting to realize that you have too much stuff in your house, so you start gathering it all up. As you sort through the goods, you remember what you spent on all of it: this $25 book might fetch you 25¢ at a garage sale, and even $100 goods might be worthless for resale. You know that you need to sell the stuff to recoup your losses, but you’re disappointed about the huge monetary losses.
Normally, we would bite the bullet, sell our stuff anyway, and that would be the end of it.
But now, we have a different option – price checking it on Amazon.
And you might be shocked; some things resell for 10x what you could earn at a garage sale. You won’t be making all your spent money back, but a lot of it, for sure.
With a garage sale, you open yourself up to a lot of liability. The stress of running a mini-business in the sun, the unscrupulous customers who snatch your items while your back is turned.
All in all, a lot of people would say that garage sales aren’t even worth the hassle.
Compare that to Amazon Trade-In, where you make your request from your computer and print the (free) shipping label within minutes. Even if you’re a master of garage sales, you can’t deny the efficiency of Amazon’s model.
The only real difference is that your goods will probably need to be more well-maintained for resale to Amazon than at a garage sale – no dusty old sneakers accepted over on Amazon!
But with a risk-free shipping label and do-from-home convenience, there’s little doubt which option is superior.
Even those of us who live light can probably find a few items that we don’t strictly need at the moment, and if you’re one of those people, I highly recommend checking out Amazon’s Trade-In program.
It’s the closest you’re going to get to no-hassle, high-reward resale.