Friday, April 13, 2018

How To Make Money By Updating Your Home


As newlyweds, we were broke. I mean, check my bank account before I bought groceries broke. Like, go the long way around to avoid the pleading Girl Scouts broke. What newlyweds aren't? Just starting out, no one has the money to buy things that match... Shoot, newly married people are lucky to have things at all! My house was full of well-loved hand-me-downs, but after a while, I was ready for my home to be filled with things that were mine and reflected my style. Furniture and home decor stores were out of the question. How could I upgrade my home without going broke?

I immediately turned to garage sales. I knew I could buy sturdy, high quality items for much less than retail store prices. But back then, $10-$15 dollar purchases could break the bank if I didn't make it back somehow.


The big shaggy rug was the first thing in my home to go. It was huge, didn't fit my style, and had sand permanently ingrained from being in my mom's beach home. It was a nice rug and served its purpose for years, but I just didn't love it.
When I stumbled upon its successor at a garage sale, it was COVERED in dog hair, and my husband wouldn't even let it come in the house until I cleaned it.  It was smaller, didn't hold in dirt, and matched my home well. For $7, it had to come home with me. Sometimes second hand requires work, but you be the judge on its worth!
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So what did I do with the monstrosity I had before? Sold it for $50 and made a profit for upgrading my home!


Another fun exchange was my dining room table. Before, I had a drop leaf table that fit perfectly in my small home, but when I got more space, I could upgrade. Nothing wrong with the previous table, but when I found this one for $90 and sold the previous one for $150, I made $60 and had a table to better fit my style.
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Sometimes, just having someone willing to haul off your old stuff is worth its weight in gold! When we bought a "new" couch for $100, my intention was to sell the old couch and chair to make some of my money back. When no one wanted them, I almost had to pay someone to take the previous couch and chair off my hands! It was worth the $100 for me to have someone else carry them down from the third floor! Not quite the same success story as some other stories, but it was worth my money for the labor, and I got to bless someone in need.

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Over the years, I have used this trick with lamps (see the pictures with the couches), coffee tables, end tables, and a million more things in my home. My house has slowly turned from a place full of hand-me-downs to a home full of my style!
The trick is being able to buy low and sell your stuff for as much or more than it cost you to get your new item. When you buy, barter! See this article for some good tips on how to get your moneys worth http://www.ordinaryroyalty.com/2018/03/10-ways-to-barter-better-without.html. When selling, always start by pricing your item at about 25% more than you actually want. The coffee and end tables cost me $40 to make, so I started by pricing the previous set at $60. I was bid down by the buyer and sold the set for $50, putting my profit at $10 for making myself a new set of tables!

Does this work for someone who bought the pieces instead of being given hand-me-downs? Of course! Imagine that you bought a kitchen table 10 years ago at $500. You're tired of it and ready to update your style. So, you find a steal for $100 at a garage sale. You sell your original table for $200. Now you've only spent $400, and you have a new table! Keep it up on other items, and the money you spent on your items will continue to drop!

 So what have you made money from buying and selling? Let's hear your success story in the comments below! 

1 comment:

  1. This is inspiring. I tend to donate or just give away home items when I tire of them. Hadn't even thought about selling and wow, to think of making more than what the new items cost is definitely making me consider this approach! I had to laugh at your old sofa, we have a similar one in our basement rec room and I am soooo tired of the set. Let's hope I can sell it and find something new like you!

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