Selling your stuff can be a great way to reward yourself for your hard work. I have someone in my community who made enough money to take her family of seven on a vacation! It can feel like it’s all worthwhile when it seems like you’ve wasted so much money. I totally get it.
However, selling the things you aren’t keeping can also be a major hurdle, and I’ve seen it hold people back so badly that their decluttering actually comes undone.
Depending on your method of selling, you have to wait for another person to take interest in each item, which is totally separate from them actually coming to pick it up with cash in hand (or you taking time from your day to go to the UPS store and mail it to them).
When you’re decluttering, the last thing you need is a reason to hold onto your stuff longer. Someone in your family sees the pile of “to sell” in the garage and suddenly that old toy they forgot existed and haven’t played with in years is their most favorite thing in the entirety of this world, and out of the pile it comes. And so do twelve others.
The stuff in the piles gets moved around and pulled back into the house and before you know it, hours of your hard work come undone and you kind of just let the whole thing go.
It’s a slippery slope.
Here’s what I want you to take from this post - value your time and the hard work you put into decluttering more than you value the money you may or may not get for the items you’re letting go of.
Where are you at in this process? Is it all fresh? Are you having anxiety over all the money lost from buying all this stuff and wishing you could somehow make it better or make your husband less angry about it?
And remember this - you did not waste money when you decided to declutter. You wasted money when you bought a bunch of stuff you didn’t really need.
The decluttering isn’t where the waste happens, the purchasing is.
One thing I usually advise people to do is sell the big ticket items at a killer price. For example, one of my clients sold her Kitchenaid mixer for $85. She posted it to a Facebook “garage sale” site and it was out of her house that night. Done and done. That’s the way to go!
Things like furniture and big ticket appliances are great items to sell if you really want to, but things like toys, clothes, plates, etc just take up time and aren’t really worth the money in my opinion. The risk outweighs the possible benefit here.
One great way to make some money without risking undoing your work is garage sales. If you live somewhere where the weather currently allows, host a garage sale and make some cash! Make the decision to haul whatever’s left away to be donated, no matter what it is and don’t let yourself waver.
When I was purging my home, I held a couple of garage sales throughout the process and it was nice to make a little something (we needed it bad at the time anyway!)
Think about the other side of this, too.
Who will receive an amazing deal on the things you donate?
Who will be so blessed by these things for free? (some places you donate don’t resell items, but rather give them to the needy at no cost)
When I was doing my initial purge, I was on a first name basis with the people who worked at my local donation center.
I had brought in a bunch of my daughter’s shoes and toys, and the next day when I was bringing in another load, the woman who worked there told me that I had just missed the sweetest, young, single mama who bought most of her stuff for her baby girl for just a few dollars. She told me she’d been so grateful to find stuff that was her daughter’s size and that she’d needed it so bad. It warmed my heart and reminded me why donating is awesome.
I understand that sometimes, you might be in the position of that single mom- in desperate need of some cash. I understand that some things are worth a decent amount of money and you’d like to make that money. I understand as I was there before too!
Just remember to know yourself, know where you’re at in this process, think of who you could bless by donating, and don’t compromise your success or waste your precious time to make a few bucks.
Have you sold anything in the process of decluttering? Share your experience in the comments!