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Consignment Shops: A Great Way to Make and Save Money

written by: moonshadow•edited by: Laurie Patsalides•updated: 7/6/2011

In a weak economy, people want to save money wherever they can, but sometimes it helps to make a little extra money too. Local consignment shops offer a place to do both.

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    Making Money

    No matter what the economy looks like, saving money and making money via consignment shops just makes good sense. Many people confuse consignment and resale shops with thrift stores, but the truth of the matter is a good consignment shop can easily become your favorite place to shop and make a little extra cash.

    Depending on the consignment shop, their stock may be limited to specific types of items or they may resemble department stores and carry a little bit of everything. The one thing that the seller must consider in choosing to make some extra cash with the consignment shop is the store’s appearance. Many modern consignment and resale shops are something like designer boutiques carrying only name brand merchandise and high-quality items.

    If you are looking to make money using a consignment shop, before you gather your items to take to the shop go and visit the store. The store should be clean, brightly lit, and well organized. The nicer the displays are in the consignment store, the more likely it is that your merchandise will be looked at and sold.

    You may also want to consider looking for a specialized consignment shop. Recycling your consumer electronics by offering them for sale at a consignment shop makes no sense if the store’s primary merchandise is clothing.

    One of the best markets in consignment shops and the easiest ways to make money via consignment shops is in gently used children's clothing. Most parents understand that children grow quickly and are looking for ways to save money on the cost of school clothes. If your children are gentle on their clothing, you can make money to pay for the next round of school clothes by selling their old clothes at the consignment shop. Consignment shops are also good ways to make money on the clothing that was bought for a special occasion and will never be worn again or clothing that no longer fits.

    Most consignment shops will set the prices for you based on their knowledge of what customers are willing to pay. Generally, prices are higher at a consignment shop than at thrift stores, but the quality is usually better as well . When making money via consignment shops, be sure to ask, what percentage the shop takes and how long they will keep items before offering them at discounted prices. Most consignment shops charge approximately 35%, or basically one third of the selling price, as their commission for the item.

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    Saving Money

    Once you've checked out the best consignment shops for listing your recycled goods to make money, it is also a good idea to examine the stores for great bargains and other savings. Almost always you can purchase quality, used clothing at about 50% of its original price at consignment shops. You can save even more with consignment store shopping if you shop at end of season sales. Getting to know the shop's owner or manager can also result in additional savings when they alert you to upcoming sales. They can also be a great place to buy gifts.

    The key to saving the most money using consignment shops is to buy during the off-season, biting winter clothes at the beginning of summer and vice versa. The key to making the most money using consignment shops is making sure your products are in the store at the beginning of the season, are in good repair, and represent classic or fashionable styling.