If you’re looking for a great side hustle, flipping items for cash may be the perfect option. Just about anyone can do it, and there’s plenty of opportunities. You don’t need a lot of experience or skill, although as you go you’ll get better and more profitable by becoming familiar with the going rates for different types of items.
Flipping is possible to do in your spare time, like heading to some yard sales on a Saturday. You can make it work with just about any schedule.
Also important, you can start making money fast! Many side hustles require you to put in a lot of work before seeing any results, but that’s not the case with flipping.
In this article we’ll take a look at the best types of items and products to buy and resell, as well as where to find them, where to sell them, and some tips for success. You’ll find the easiest things to flip for profit below.
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Best Things to Flip to Make Money Fast
In order to have success as a flipper you need to know which items you will have a good chance of reselling for a profit. Some items are better than others, and here you’ll find a list of more than 25 items that are typically pretty good options for flipping. Of course, a lot of your success will depend on how much you pay for an item.
1. Wood Furniture
Wood furniture can be a great item to resale for a few reasons. Quality wood furniture can last for decades, so even if it needs to be re-finished there is a lot of potential for profit and a market willing to buy it. Also, it’s fairly easy to find people’s unwanted, old furniture. If you know what you’re looking for it’s not that hard to find wood furniture that you can flip for a profit.
→ Related reading: Flipping Furniture for Profit
2. Upholstered Furniture
Likewise, upholstered furniture can also be profitable to flip. The possibilities here are to clean the upholstery yourself and make it look much better, or get it reupholstered. Reupholstering can cost some money, but it may make the furniture look like new.
3. Outdoor Furniture
Outdoor furniture can also have some value if you find something that is in pretty good condition. Many people will not place much value on their used outdoor furniture and simply get rid of it or sell it for a low price.
Antiques are easily one of the most profitable things to flip. Of course, this is a broad category that can include a lot of different things. The best way to make money with antiques is to get familiar with the market and the types of items that sell. You’ll need to know the value of items that you buy and the best way to make money is to be more knowledgeable than the person selling the item.
Anything collectible is possible to flip for profit (assuming you buy it at the right price). This could include antiques, but not all collectibles are antiques. The most valuable collectibles will have fans who are very passionate about the item or brand.
6. Motorized Items
Dirt bikes, 4-wheelers (quads), ATVs, golf carts, jet skis, snowmobiles, and other motorized items are excellent possibilities for flipping. Sometimes you’ll find people who no longer use these items looking to sell them for very low prices. Maybe they are moving, replaced it with a newer model, or simply don’t use it. Regardless of the reason, you can benefit.
Flipping appliances can be very profitable, although it’s not always easy. You can often get used appliances for great prices because most people simply want to get rid of them when they’re no longer being used. People usually don’t want the hassle of moving big appliances and trying to sell them. If you’re willing to deal with the hassle and you have a truck or trailer to move the appliance, there is a great opportunity for profit.
8. Records and Record Players
Although technology has moved on, there is still a demand for records and record players. You may be able to find them selling for low prices at yard sales.
9. Vintage Electronics
Some vintage electronics like Walkmans, cassette players, and VCRs can be sold for a profit. Many people assume these items have no value, so you may be able to find them for very cheap prices.
10. Photography Gear
Cameras and lenses, and even some accessories like tripods, can retain value. Lenses especially, because they can be used for many years if they’re in good condition. Vintage photography gear can definitely have value, and even non-vintage used gear can be resold for good prices. There is a strong market for used photography equipment. It can be an expensive hobby, so you’ll find many photographers are used to spending a lot of money on gear.
11. Clothes and Shoes
Clothes and shoes can be great items to flip, but it really depends on the specifics. Name brands and designer labels will bring the best prices. Although you may need to dig through a lot of clothes to find the best brands, it is possible to find them being sold for cheap prices at yard sales and thrift stores.
Also, items with the tags still on can be great finds.
This is a great item that you can find for cheap at yard sales and easily sell for a profit.
13. Vintage Eyeglasses
You may come across vintage glasses selling for low prices because it’s easy to think that they would have no value. But there are actually a lot of people who are willing to pay for them.
14. Concert T-Shirts
Concert t-shirts can be great collectible items. Once a tour is over the shirts will no longer be made or sold, so the only way to get one is to buy it second hand. Popular bands that are no longer around can be great for making a profit.
Bikes can be great for buying and reselling. There are a lot of them available at yard sales. Name brands and vintage bikes are the best options, but it’s possible to make money with others as well. In some cases you’ll need to clean it up and maybe do some minor repair to get it to sell for top dollar.
Strollers and other baby items can be great to resell. There are always parents who are looking to sell things that have been outgrown or are no longer needed. Likewise, there will always be other parents looking to save some money by buying used instead of new. Name brand strollers can be a good option, but other baby items can be good too.
17. Sporting Goods & Equipment
Sporting goods can be found for sale at many yard sales and thrift shops. Some of them have value if they are in good shape and you can get it at the right price.
18. Sports Jerseys
Sports fans love to have jerseys for their favorite teams and players. Vintage jerseys are also extremely popular.
19. Sports Memorabilia
Aside from jerseys, other sports memorabilia can also be worth flipping.
20. Vintage Sportswear
Vintage sportswear from name brands like Nike and Adidas can sell for much more than what you’ll pay at a yard sale.
21. Collectible Toys
Have you ever gone into a used or vintage toy store and been depressed by the value of all the toys you used to own? Many collectible toys are worth good money, especially if you happen to find them in the original packaging, which is rare. Even if they’re not vintage, some toys have good enough value to be flipped, like some Lego sets.
22. Vintage Board Games
If they are in decent condition, old board games can be good options for flipping. Many people have them sitting around in their basement or a closet, so it’s possible to find them at a yard sale.
23. Video Games and Consoles
You may be surprised at the market for old video games and consoles. The vintage games and systems can be collectible items and some will bring a nice price. Despite this, many people assume they have no value and practically give them away at yard sales.
24. Car Parts
If you’re knowledgeable about cars you can get cheap parts at a junkyard and resell them online.
25. Yard Equipment
You may be able to find things like lawn mowers and leaf blowers for very cheap, or even free. They may need repair, and many people would choose to buy a new one instead of fixing the one they already have. You may be able to find someone to do the repairs for cheap, or if you know what you’re doing you can do it yourself. You can also make money with things like metal rakes and other non-motorized yard tools. All of these items can be cleaned up to make them look much more presentable and to bring a higher price.
26. Power Tools
There is a great demand, and availability, for used power tools. People often sell them to declutter, when they’re moving, or when they buy a newer model. Other people look to buy used power tools when they need one for a specific job, or when they just want to save some money compared to buying new.
27. Book Sets
In general, selling used books won’t make you a ton of money. But the best possibility is to sell books in a set or series (think Harry Potter and other popular sets). If you see these books for sale individually at yard sales or thrift shops you can probably get them for very cheap. Keep them until you put together a full set, and then you can flip the set for profit.
Where to Find Things to Flip for Profit
There are a lot of great places to find stuff that you can flip, including:
- In your house, basement, garage, or shed
- From friends or family who are cleaning out their homes
- Yard sales, garage sales, rummage sales, and church sales
- Thrift stores (Goodwill, Salvation Army, Value Village, Savers, ReStore, St. Vincent DePaul, and community stores)
- Flea markets
- Estate sales
- Stuff people are throwing away (check the sidewalks on trash day)
- Online (Ebay, Craigslist, OfferUp, Letgo, and more)
Where to Resell the Things You Want to Flip
Fortunately, there are a number of websites and apps that make it a lot easier to sell your stuff. Of course, you can also sell locally without using the internet.
- Facebook Marketplace – you can move a lot of items quickly thanks to great exposure
- Local yard sale Facebook groups – many towns and cities have local groups (be sure you follow the rules of the group)
- Craigslist – a great free option that provides good exposure
- Ebay – can sometimes bring higher prices, but you’ll also have fees
- Poshmark – for selling clothes
- Yard sale – if you have a lot of things to sell, a yard sale is a good option for moving many items quickly
For a more detailed look at the options, see my article 17 Apps and Websites to Help You Sell Your Stuff.
How to Get Started
Ok, so by now you’re probably convinced that buying and reselling can be a great way to start making some extra money. But how can you get started?
Start by Selling Things from Around Your House – The risk-free way to get started is to simply sell some things that you no longer use or need. Not only will you get rid of some clutter, but you can get some experience selling without the need to risk any money.
Invest the Money that You Make – The money that you make from selling your own items can be used to buy some things to flip. Since you’re using money that you’ve already made, you’re not at risk.
Focus on Something that You Know – While this article focusses on the best things to flip, that doesn’t mean that you should try to buy and sell all of these items. Ideally, you can find a few types of items that you’re already familiar with. That way you know when you’re getting a good deal and you’ll have a better chance of early success. Alternative, if you’re not really familiar with any of the types of items on the list, pick one that interests you and start to become familiar with it. Browse the Facebook Marketplace, Craigslist, and eBay to get an idea of typical prices. That way when you’re out at a yard sale or flea market you will have a better idea of what you might be able to sell it for.
Start Small and Work Your Way Up – At first, your goal should be to make a profit, even if you are buying and selling inexpensive items. As you get some experience, smaller profits may not be worth your time, so you’ll want to work your way up to more expensive items, which gives you the chance to make more money.
Tips for Successful Reselling
Here are a few quick tips to help you have success as a flipper.
1. Know What It’s Worth Before Buying
Probably the biggest key to success is knowing what something is worth before you buy it. If you don’t know at least a ballpark value, you’re just guessing. You can definitely have success with some individual items this way, but not consistently.
Of course, you’ll get better at this with more experience. It can also be really helpful to always have your phone on you. If you come across something interesting at a yard sale or flea market you can look it up on a few different websites or apps to see what it’s selling for.
2. Be Willing to Walk Away
If you can’t buy it at the right price, be willing to walk away. In some cases the person selling the item will come down on their price when you’re willing to walk away. And if they don’t, you’ll avoid overpaying for an item.
3. Focus on Things You Know
When you get started with flipping you may want to focus only on a few specific types of items that you know well. This is a good way to avoid bad purchases that you can’t resell for a profit. As you get more experience you’ll also get more comfortable and familiar with other types of items, and you can expand your horizons.
4. Multiply Your Results
If you find a really great item that you know you can flip for a profit, ask the seller if they have more. It’s an easy way to increase your profit, and you might be surprised at how often it works. Likewise, when you’re selling an item for a good profit you may want to ask the buyer if they would have use for more of the same or similar items. If so, you can go out and try to find more with confidence that you have an easy sale. This is often most effective with commercial equipment or collectibles.
5. Clean Up the Items
The appearance and condition will have a big impact on the price you get for used items. Simply cleaning up the item can make a huge difference. Depending on the item and the condition, you may want to do some minor things like touch up the paint.
6. Take Good Photos
For items that you are selling online, photos are critical. You don’t have to be a professional photographer, but just making a few small changes can drastically improve the quality of your photos.
First, make sure your photos are taken in good light. Poor lighting and dark photos are a common problem. I prefer natural light, but flash or a simple home photo studio can work for small items.
Second, pay attention to the background. Keep the backgrounds simple to avoid distractions.
Third, take a lot of photographs and from all angles. Include multiple photos in your listing. Especially with used items, buyers often want to see all sides of the item to know that there are no major flaws.
7. Create a Detailed Listing
When you’re creating a listing to sell an item online, be as detailed as possible. Be honest with any damage or imperfections with the item. Most people buying used items won’t expect it to be perfect, and if you’re upfront and honest they’ll be more likely to trust your listing. Try to answer questions that you can anticipate.
8. Answer Questions
Even though you want to anticipate questions that buyers are likely to ask and address them in your listing, you’ll still get other questions. Take time to answer questions if you want people to trust you as a seller.
9. Have Shipping Supplies on Hand
If you’re selling items online and shipping them to buyers, it’s helpful if you have some common shipping supplies on hand and ready to use. Boxes of different sizes, quality shipping tape, and clear poly bags are all things that you may use a lot.
Free Workshop for Profitable Flipping
This free workshop (75 minutes) will show you how to start a profitable reselling business in as little as 14 days. Learn the insider secrets that will help you to achieve success and start making money quickly. Register for the workshop here.
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