What is the best way to sell furniture?

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Answered by: Jessica , An Expert in the Buy and Sell Category
Thinking about selling some furniture? Maybe you want to de-clutter, or make a little extra cash but don't know where to start. There are lots of ways to do it, so what you really need to know, is what is the best way to sell furniture for you.

First let's look at your online options for how to sell furniture. You have sites like ebay.com, or etsy.com, and yes, they do sell furniture on there. But you have to ask yourself, "Do I really want to ship Grandma's china cabinet to Arizona?" or would you really just rather someone came and picked it up from your garage? Unless you are a professional shipper, I'm guessing you went with the garage option, so let's just keep going with that premise.

What you probably don't know is that you are probably already using the best free marketing tool out there, Facebook. Obviously you could post a photo on your timeline for your friends to see and say, "China Cabinet $200" and hope that one of your friends bites. But take that idea a little further and do a little searching for online yard sale pages in your area. They are generally set up as a Facebook group, and you usually have to submit a request to join (just a matter of the moderator checking that you are indeed local), and then you are in.

These groups operate like free classifieds, or more accurately like free online yard sales. People sell everything from dishes, to clothes, to cars and houses, and of course, furniture. Most areas have more than one group, so try to choose the one that looks the most active and post away! Don't forget to read each groups rules and guidelines to selling to make your experience go smoothly. Another online option is of course good old Craigslist.com. Still free like Facebook, but there is no sort of out in the open feeling like on a yard sale group where everyone's picture and location are public. It is however a very effective way to sell. Just be cautious and try to meet in a public place, or have someone with you if the buyer is coming to your home.

There's also the Craigslist scammers, expect to get at least one email with someone who "wants your item and is sending a check". Stick to the, "if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is" rule.

Now on to brick and mortar, or face to face options. First there is obviously holding a yard sale, which is good if you are looking to de-clutter and have a lot to sell. Yard sales are probably where you are going to make the lowest sale price though on your item, so if you have any pieces of value, you want explore other routes. There is also the possibility of selling at auction. Each auction house has a different commission rate (the amount they keep from the selling price), but it usually is between 25% and 50%. On the plus side, the pretty much do all the work for you, and will usually offer some kind of pick up service to transport your items to the auction.

Then there is consignment. It seems like consignment is one of the biggest trends lately with shops popping up everywhere. Do a quick search for furniture consignment in your area and go check them out. Consignment means that you bring in your item and the retail shop sells it for you, and keeps a percentage. The going rate is usually around 50/50, but will vary from store to store. Be sure you read the fine print and ask questions such as, "Will I be notified if you are going to lower the price?" and "What happens if my item doesn't sell?". Some stores will automatically drop the asking price after a certain time period, or give a customer a discount without telling you, so you want to know that up front.

No matter what method you choose, selling furniture does not have to be a mysterious or daunting process. It can be as easy as posting a quick photo on Facebook, or taking your treasures to your local consignment shop. Now that you know some of your options, just decide which way is the best way to sell furniture for you, and you could be cashing in on your clutter in no time at all.

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