Thrift Store Flipping: How to Make Money Thrifting

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thrift store flipping

Many of us are looking for ways to earn extra cash in today’s world. There are many ways out there to make money, but one fun and rewarding way people tend to overlook is thrift store flipping. Most of us go to thrift shops to get our clothes because it’s pretty cheap and affordable. Many people buy some of their clothes and household items at thrift stores because it helps them get some nice clothes at reasonable prices and save some money. Clothes found at thrift shops are nice and in good condition. Sometimes, you will even find new items.

What is a Thrift Store?

If you need to familiarize yourself with what a thrift store is, allow me to help. A thrift store is usually a donation-based store, where clothing and other items that non-profit organizations donate or people are sold for a way lower price than initially bought. Sometimes these items are not of the best quality because they are second-hand, but you can get clothes of great quality at thrifts for really affordable prices.

What is Thrifting or Thrift Store Flipping?

Now you may wonder how to make money from getting things at a thrift store. You’ve probably heard of people making hundreds of dollars and even thousands of dollars from thrifting, and you’ve always wanted that, but you didn’t know how. It’s pretty simple. We do it using a method known as thrift store flipping.

Thrift store flipping is the act of getting an item at a low price from thrift stores and then reselling them to make a profit.

In this post, I will discuss how you can make money from flipping your finds at the thrift store.

Thrift store flipping can be a delicate process that can be successful or unsuccessful based on how you handle the business. So here are a few simples steps to follow when thrifting.

Steps to Thrifting

Find the Item

The first step to earning from thrifting is finding the correct item to flip. You most definitely need to know where to find these items.

  • Start at Home

I always tell people that their home is the first place to look when trying things to resell. Before going to thrift stores to purchase items, starting with your stuff is best. Your home is the number one place for thrift materials, from used clothes to old shoes and household items.

You can gather these items and sell them to others for cash. It gives you an experience in sales and allows you to make some money that can be used to purchase items for thrift flipping. This way, you can make some extra start-up cash to help if you cannot sell the things you buy. Also, you won’t lose money. Once you have mastered selling your items, you can move on to purchasing and flipping thrift store items.

  • Traditional Thrift Stores

Another place to look for things to resell is traditional thrift stores. Examples of some traditional thrift stores include Goodwill, Savers, and the Salvation Army. Sometimes people are worried about getting clothes at Goodwill or the Salvation Army because they might be in bad condition, but this is not true in most cases. The clothes at traditional thrift stores are usually in good condition, but it might take some time to get precisely what you’re searching for. You might have to spend a lot of time digging through the bins and loads of items, but it might be worth it as they’re way cheaper than regular thrift stores and are sometimes free. It could be a great way to save some money and make some profits by flipping thrift store items.

  • Independent Thrift Stores

Another Place to get items to flip is typical independent thrift stores. These thrift stores are usually owned by private individuals, selling these items at lower prices than they were initially bought. You could find some nice things to flip here, usually in excellent condition.

  • Yard or Estate Sale

A yard or estate sale is another excellent place to get things to resell. You can get some great stuff from yard sales and estate sales, and the items are cheaper than thrift stores, and prices can also be negotiated. Although estate sale prices are sometimes a little high, it’s worth the try.

  • Discount Stores

You could also find great items at discount retail stores like Ross or HomeGoods. It’s sometimes challenging to get stuff at discount retail stores, but if you do get them, they’re cheaper and in better condition than thrift stores. Sometimes you can get some items cheap and resell them at high prices.

  • The Internet

Another place you can get thrift items to flip is the internet. The internet is one big marketplace, and many people online are looking to sell off a thing, and you can get them at really low prices.

An excellent place to start would be Facebook groups and Instagram pages. Some Facebook groups are dedicated to selling and buying stuff. The Facebook Marketplace is also a great place to start. It’s just like a yard sale. Websites like Nextdoor or eBay allow you to buy things at really low prices.

Here’s a list that features 25 online thrift stores.

Knowing What to Buy to Resell

Once you’ve found your source for items, the next step is knowing exactly what to buy, so you can easily resell them for profits. Whatever you decide to get must have a high demand in the market and a good resell value.

  • Clothes and Shoes

The first things on that list of things to resell are clothes and shoes. Clothes and shoes are the first choices to go for when finding items to flip. They are usually in high demand and are very easy to resell. Look for clothes owned by the top or popular brands in good condition. Those are easier to resell at higher prices. Also, check online for the prices for which most of the items are sold to help you better choose what to buy at the thrift.

Some top brands that resell quickly for high prices are, Lululemon, Reformation, Mother Jeans, Farm Rio, Betabrand, and Gucci. If you can get your hands on some of these brands, you could make some good money.

  • Home goods and Kitchenware

Another set of items on the list is home goods and kitchenware. You could also profit from reselling household items for aesthetics, like paintings, photographs, and vases. You could also make money from kitchenware like plates, vintage cups, and decorations. Be sure to look for vintage Pyrex, as people will pay a lot.

  • Vintage Toys and Games

Another item to look out for is vintage toys and games.

At some point in your life, I’m sure you’ve bought a toy from a yard sale that reminded you of your childhood. People tend to pay a lot for vintage toys and games that remind them of something or just for their collection. This is why these items are great to get and flip. These items include vintage dolls, model cars, trains, and board games.

You could also make money from flipping electronic items like TV remotes or VCRs, cell phones, and calculators. You can make money from many things by reselling them, like books, textbooks, records, and sports equipment. You have to do some research.

Related Reading: Best Brands to Sell on Poshmark

Knowing How and Where to Resell the Items

This is the part where we make our profits by reselling the items. It is a significant part of thrift store flipping, as you can only make money if you make sales. Once you’ve succeeded in selling the thing, you must proceed to get them sold, and knowing how and where to sell these items will help you make money faster.

One of the easiest places to resell these items is online platforms. These platforms include Facebook Marketplace, eBay, Mercari, Instagram, OfferUp, and your personally built website.

Online markets are the best to resell these items, especially since owning a physical shop might cost a lot.

Some Tips to Help you Flip Thrift Store Items Properly and Sell

  • When setting up a price for the item, leave room for negotiation so interested buyers can negotiate with you.
  • Make sure to clean your items properly before reselling them to avoid stains and smells.
  • Always pay attention to the shipping and packaging details. Research to avoid mistakes and use the option that’s favorable to you.

Thrift store flipping is an excellent way of making money. It takes some time to get used to the system; you need a lot of pertinence and persistence. You must be open to mistakes and willing to learn.

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Jason Butler is the owner of My Money Chronicles, a website where he discusses personal finance, side hustles, travel, and more. Jason is from Atlanta, Georgia. He graduated from Savannah State University with his BA in Marketing. Jason has been featured in Forbes, Discover, and Investopedia.