Back on Track – E-Mail Subscribers Benefit!

Our move is 95% FINISHED!!!!

Last major thing to do is set up my eBay area. I figured that the rest of the house might be a little more important…

In the mean time, I’ve been very lucky and have been able to store my live eBay and Amazon inventory at an “associate’s” warehouse during the move. They’ve helped out with shipping too. If it weren’t for them, I’d have had to turn my listings off and wouldn’t have had any of the profits that I got in July. YOU KNOW WHO YOU ARE.  ;-)

I feel like I owe any readers who stuck around, so if you’re still there, thanks! That’s the best part about subscribing via e-mail.

E-Mail – AOL Approved since 1993 – That’s right, AOL Mail can legally drink in the US…

youve-got-mail
I know that you’ve been up at night worrying about my eBay sales. Don’t worry, subscribe by e-mail, and I’ll bug you on my own time!

You can forget about me until I e-mail again with something new to look out for, some info about a neat sale, a new technique to add to listings, or musings on other on-line selling info.

On that note, here are my upcoming topics that I’ll be working on in the next few months:

  • Embedding a YouTube video – doing this helped aid in a >$200 sale! Best sale to date!
  • eBay’s new DSR (Detailed Seller Ratings) – I’ll try to go over the pro’s and the con’s (there are a bunch of con’s). Overall though, I’m still not worried and will definitely be continuing with eBay
  • Internet Service Provider flop – I had big plans on switching to a smaller provider. I choked on this one but I’d like to go over the process for those that aren’t afraid.
  • Tie Flip! This was my second foray into the men’s neck tie area. Let’s just say this was a complete success (especially considering that my 1st shot is still listed and hasn’t sold in 6 months)
  • I’m also going to include a few posts on some flops. I want to bust through the “glamour” of online selling and talk about some of the not-so-hot buys I’ve made.  Hey, live and learn. This hobby reminds me of a favorite saying of my great grandmother, “That’ll learn ya!”
  • Guest posts from my wife – I’ve only really talked about eBay so far – but that’s only one side of things. As a family, we try to live a frugal lifestyle. My wife is going to discuss some of the ways we save around the house and some ways she’s made some extra cash on the side through other real world (not online) avenues!

Profits!

I have updated the profits banner up on the right. Here’s the monthly totals so far:

Month Contribution
Jan-14 $           615.75
Feb-14 $           114.90
Mar-14 $           371.34
Apr-14 $             63.26
May-14 $           342.58
Jun-14 $                   -
Jul-14 $            787.50

Best month this year!! That’s $2,295.33 saved so far! Technically, I’m failing (should be at $3,210 if you look at the monthly average for my goal’s projection), but really, I’m still thrilled. That’s a large amount of money going towards our retirement with no debt incurred. Can’t beat that!

Look forward to helping everyone out once we’re all settled in here at our new home!

-Dollar Flipper

Super Soaker Mt. Tiki-Soki Sprinkler

Fair warning: This is a quickie post. My wife and I are in the midst of a move across states. My blog posts will be few and far between for the next month or so. I’d just ask that if you like my content, please stay subscribed. It might take a bit for me to get back into the swing of things, but I really enjoy writing here and sharing what I’ve learned!

In the mean time, I am still selling. Listing hasn’t been as good as I’d like it to be numbers-wise, but I just don’t have the time. Once I move, I’m going to have a specific eBay area in the back of the garage! Maybe I’ll even share the storage area!

Onto the recent sale:

Super Soaker Sprinkler – Mt. Tiki-Soki

Forgive the fact that I did this video in portrait. You live and learn.  I promise my next video will be in landscape and take full advantage of my phone’s camera capabilities!

Super Soaker water guns were originally made by a company called Larami. It’s a product of the early 90′s, near and dear to my heart.  It’s currently produced by Hasbro under the Nerf brand.

Now, old Super Soaker guns are really what you want to keep an eye out for. Check out some of these completed listings:

Super Soaker eBay Completed Listings
Cue the 20 and 30 somethings calling their parents to see if there’s still a Super Soaker in their garage…

The bigger, the better! Check out that badass one with the extra water container. I wish I could have gotten one of those!

Now, my Super Soaker item may not have been as cool as these big guns, but right about now (it’s going to be 90 tomorrow), it would be perfect.

Super Soaker Profits

  • Purchase price - $3
  • End Selling Price - $90.90
  • Fees and Shipping/Handling - $22.29

Total Profit : $65.61

Woah boy! I started this as an auction at $74.99, and it got up to $81.00. S/H was paid by the buyer at $9.90. Overall, this was a great sale experience. Fun learning while also hitting the nostalgia button!

Now, I PROMISE that my next post will be a How-To on embedding the YouTube video into an eBay listing. It’s super easy, and I plan on using videos to showcase any future items that have moving parts.

-Dollar Flipper

Fashion Bug Plus Sized Womens Jeans

First, I’m still here. Sorry if I got your hopes up by not posting for a while!

Second, boy oh boy did I have a haul! I grabbed a ton of plus sized Fashion Bug and Lane Bryant pants from a local thrift store. I also have a few tips at the bottom that I’ve learned from this situation and what measurements I include in my pants eBay listings.

Fashion Bug Womens Jeans 32WP
Not only are these Fashion Bug pants big, they’re petite too! Much harder to find!

Story time:

I happened to find an awesome Grateful Dead T-Shirt that just jumped out at me (check it out at the bottom of this post). In doing so, I happened to notice a pair of new jeans with a tag on it. Quick eBay look made them worth a shot.

When I brought my pile to the register, the nice lady told me that all the Fashion Bug jeans and Lane Bryant pants were only $1 a piece, and that there was a big box of them in the corner… all at the same price. Now I had to go check them out.

eBay research was not too much help. I found a few used pair going for ~$10 so I figured what the hell and took a shot. I ended up buying 13 pair that day. 5 of them were the same type which really makes the listing go a lot quicker!

After listing them, they sold like hot cakes! I sold 4 of the original 13 in a week! One customer was even nice enough to buy 2 pair and save me about $5 on shipping since she lived so close. :)

Once I saw the potential here, I ended up going back to the store. The big box of pants were still there! I asked the workers about them, and they let me know that they picked them up in a storage auction. I’m guessing that a former Fashion Bug owner had just piled everything into a big box in a storage unit that they rented. She also dropped “Some guy bought a handful a few weeks ago. I’d really like to get rid of them.” I guess I have a forgettable face…

I asked them if they could cut me a deal for all of them. The guy inspects the pile intensely, and really makes me sweat it out. He comes out with a very sturdy “$20.” SOLD! Here’s the end result:

Fashion Bug Lane Bryant Pants Lot
This is what we got on the 2nd go around. The wonderful wife sorted and counted them. There were 44 pairs of pants, capris, and shorts!

Now, the negative about this whole deal is those white ones. Most of them were stained somewhere so they’re going in the trash. A few of the jeans had holes (not included in the count). All in all, I’d say that we have 50 in total in good working order (including both hauls). Hopefully the sale details will blow your mind!

  • Purchase price (total for all the pants) – $33
  • End Selling Price (total of what’s sold so far) – $159.54
  • Fees and Shipping/Handling – $49.64

Total Profit so far: $76.90

Now, before you say, that’s a nice return, let me point out the fact that this includes only 6 pair of the whole batch! For some nice round numbers, I’m selling everything for between $19.99 and $29.99 and free shipping. Minimally, I’ll make $10 a pair. For you math whiz’s out there that’s about $500 in PROFIT when they all sell! Now I just need to get back to listing instead of blogging… ;)

Here’s the tips from this whole experience that can hopefully help you out:

BIG SELLS on eBAY

The bigger the better, especially when it comes to new clothes. This stuff is hard to find in a regular store. When you can grab it new with tags, you’re going to do well with it!

Test the waters

I’m not a women’s jeans expert, but I had a hunch that these would sell well. Once I got a few sales, I knew the rest were worth the risk!

Ask for a Deal

If you’re going to buy the whole lot – ask them if they can help you out since you’re clearing a big amount of floor space for them! This probably won’t work in a large, chain thrift store (Salvation Army, Goodwill, Savers, etc.). The one I got these at was more of a mom and pop one.

Fashion Bug is no longer open!

Look out for any stores which have closed. Someone who had a favorite pair of jeans is going to have to look for older jeans models on eBay, and your inventory can fill their needs!

Measurements for Pants on eBay

Here’s what I include in the listing, including the measurements I took:

New Fashion Bug Plus 32WP Womens Petite Dark Denim Boot Cut Red Triangle Jeans

Made of 81% cotton, 18% polyester, and 1% spandex. Classic 5 pocket with zipper fly and signature metal button closure. This garment is from the Right Fit series. Moderately curvy – slightly curved from waist to hips. The jeans are brand new with tags in perfect condition with no flaws or defects.

Waist 47″ around
Hips 61″ around
Length from top of pants 43.5″
Inseam 29.5″
Rise 17″
Cuff 24″ around

Free shipping to US!
Global shipping program outside of the US.

This is a generic cut and paste that I use from a .txt file I keep on my desktop. I just fill in the info that’s needed and voila! Quick and easy listing.

Make sure to look at the whole store

The funny thing about this whole batch is that I wouldn’t have found them if I hadn’t seen this sweet Grateful Dead tie-dyed T-Shirt was jumping out at me!

1992 Grateful Dead Liquid Blue T-Shirt
Bought this T-shirt for $5 and sold it for $20.50. Total profit = $9.45; not my best but it was a quick sale!

So not only did the Grateful Dead T-Shirt turn me a profit, but it led me straight to a huge stack of $$$ in the form of some plus sized Fashion Bug pants! Win-Win!

Till next time,

-Dollar Flipper

Getting started on eBay – Guest Post @ Stapler Confessions

Just wanted to let everyone know that I answered a bunch of questions that Rebecca had about getting started on eBay over at her blog Stapler Confessions.

Stapler Confessions
I hope she didn’t steal that red stapler from Milton!

Rebecca has some great posts ranging from frugal living tips, paying down debt, and weekly deals at Staples (some of which are free when you game their rebates system!).  I haven’t tried to source from Staples yet, but I’m keeping them in my peripheral vision for potential flips. Some of the best items with re-sale potential are the free software deals; McAfee Total Protection Anti-Virus software 2014 and Kaspersky Internet Security 2014 were recent examples.

Rebates like the ones offered by Staples, CVS, or Rite Aid definitely make them a viable option for sourcing new material. I’ve heard of extreme couponers who do just this. The best part about Stapler Confessions is that it’s all laid out in front of you (you won’t have to gather a bunch of circulars and root around for the matching coupons). Some stuff can even be re-sold at yard sales like pens and photo paper, and even if you aren’t planning on re-selling the items, a lot of the free ones are SUPER useful (i.e. reams of office paper or batteries).

Rebecca’s questions were from the prospective of someone just getting started out. It’s funny how much insight can be had by someone who isn’t used to the jargon/fees/system.

Hopefully Rebecca’s questions and my answers can get you over the hump of just getting started. Selling online is a little intimidating at first, but eBay has really helped by lowering the barrier to entry.

You can get in touch with Rebecca and get some great deals at Stapler Confessions, Twitter, or Facebook!

-Dollar Flipper

Relax and Recharge

We all get overwhelmed with life sometimes. When that happens, we need to find ways to take a step back, recalibrate, recharge, and most importantly, RELAX.

Work can take a toll. Extra curricular activities can become too burdensome. You can just stretch yourself too thin.

For me, this can happen when I have a huge pile of stuff that I need to list, knowing that it might be losing value as we speak. I know that I should be listing because it’s a better use of my time than playing video games or watching Sherlock on Netflix.

The thing is that I want this eBay “business” to really remain a fun little hobby instead of becoming a chore. When I get into a funk like this, I have a few steps to get me back on track.

1. Take a Break!

Even though I’m currently writing this post (a little too close to actual work for comfort), I really am practicing what I’m preaching.

Relaxing Pool View
I’ll definitely be down by the pool with a nice, cool beverage this afternoon!

2. Make a Plan

My simple plan is to break the work up into chunks. For me, it’s 1) sort, 2) take pictures/measurements, and 3) finally list.

3. Execute

When I’m doing the sorting, I’ll try to look for items which are quick and easy. This will allow me to build some momentum. Next, I’ll take a bunch of pictures and measure any clothing all at once, just writing down the important information on a loose piece of paper. Finally, I’ll take my list and do the last bit of research and list each item.

Breaking the process down into easy steps makes it more manageable. Sometimes just making the plan gives me enough energy to get over the hurdle of starting.

Hopefully when I get back from this vacation, I can kick some major eBay ass and list a ton!

-Dollar Flipper

Striptease Highball Glasses

This set of striptease glasses were the kind of item that jumps right out at you. As my wife will attest, I’m a typical dude…

And ladies? Don’t turn away! There’s something special a little later for you!

Just be careful though, sets of glasses are a PITA to ship. You really need to buy low to profit on an item like this!

Adults only from here on! Some of the photos are NSFW-ish. Don’t want anyone to get in trouble! :)

Vintage Striptease Highball Glasses

Playboy Striptease Glasses
Friends using these glasses – funny. Older guy who looks like a dad using these glasses with some younger people – kind of creepy…

The premise behind these glasses is that as the glass gets cold, the water condenses, and the white lingerie that the girls are wearing disappears! Instead of curing diseases, there were men in laboratories trying to figure out how to mimic a girl undressing. Can’t say I’m surprised.

This set that I had was from 1977, so the fact that the box is a little distressed isn’t that big of a worry. The key to collectible glasses with this white, disappearing material is that the white is still there.

Over time and use, the white lingerie/bikinis will begin to wear off. Then you’re just stuck with a set of glasses with naked ladies on them. Who would want those? Seriously though, collectors wouldn’t. They want the glasses to be in good shape.

My set wasn’t perfect. 1 of the girls in the set had some wear. Notice the glass on the right.

Playboy Striptease Glasses 2
These are only used in the classiest of situations…

The paper insert gives instructions on how to wash the glasses, but again, even if you follow them to a T, they’re going to start to wear. The ones that are in mint condition can go for almost double what I got.

I did have a hard time letting go of this set, and I may have used them a few times with friends… It makes it easier to rationalize a “less than ideal profit” when you get to use it for a while before you sell it for a profit!


And now for any female readers…

Don’t think I forgot about you. If you want a good bachelorette party item, then look no further!

Playboy Striptease Glasses Male
I’ve tried to crop off the “naughty” parts since the full pictures don’t leave much to the imagination.

Now, you may think you’re set, but sorry ladies, you’re going to have to pay more for these! The set that sold on eBay that I borrowed the picture from went for $50 more than mine! I guess the male glasses are just a little more difficult to find.

Now to the numbers:

  • Purchase price – $2
  • End Selling Price – $29.50
  • Fees and Shipping/Handling – $18.18

Total Profit: $9.32

Well that’s a bummer. Still made a profit but no one’s knocking down my door over < $10! Especially when the item sold for $30! Shipping costs killed me here.

eBay shipping costs when starting out

First, I didn’t have a box that I could put the glasses in so I had to buy one. This is a common problem when you are starting out in the online re-selling business. When you get a little bigger, you can buy boxes or mailers in bulk. In the beginning though, if you’re trying to limit your $ input, then you’re going to have to buy the boxes and mailers at Walmart or Staples. The box I bought for these glasses was about $3.

Next, there’s the shipping itself. You can’t really do anything there.  The set was ~ 1-2 pounds. I’m not sure where it went, but it cost over $10 to ship. Ugh!

When you’re buying, you want to not only make sure that it’s going to sell high enough for a profit, but you also want to make sure that you can ship it easily too. Here’s my 3-step tried and true method:

1. Weigh the item. Add on a bit for a box/packing material (if necessary).

2. For the East Coast, use the USPS/FedEx/UPS site and put in your zip code. For the destination, use the most popular zip code you can think of in California.

eBay Calirornia Shipping Beverly Hills, 90210 Cast
90′s rejoice! We won’t talk about that recent (2008) rehash.

Beverley Hills, 90210!

For any of you west coasters, just use an easy NY zip code – 10001. These two zip codes will give you a really good estimate of your shipping costs. If you live in the middle of the country, pick one and don’t complain. You save a ton of money on shipping!

3. That’s it.

As I sell more and more on eBay, I’ve definitely stayed away from large items unless I know that I can sell it for a HUGE profit. If I’m only making $10 on an item, I want it to be quick and easy to ship, like a video game. I don’t want to have to go to a store, buy a box, spend a lot of time wrapping the item, and then pay a lot for shipping! On top of all that, the heavier items mostly go UPS or FedEx, so that means I’ll have to stop by a different store.

We’ll finish up with a deep quote from Beverly Hills 90210:

”It’s no trip around the world, but I think we could take quite a journey together.” – Brandon to Kelly Taylor

Personally, I like to say this to my wife early Saturday morning before hitting up some yard sales. So much for my romantic side…

-Dollar Flipper

Photo Credit:  Inf-Lite Teacher

Ugly Christmas or Aztec Clothing on eBay

Ugly – It’s a Matter of Opinion

We all have different tastes. One thing I’ve noticed is the more garish or eye-grabbing some piece of clothing is, the better it will sell on eBay!

Maybe the person is planning on attending a fun, themed party. Maybe they really have bad tastes. Maybe they never got out of that neon 90s phase. Maybe their in that awkward teenage stage where every decision they make is cringe-worthy (been there done that).

The important thing to me isn’t the why though; if it’s selling, I’ll buy it at a thrift store or a garage sale!

Ugly Christmas Sweaters

Ugly Christmas sweater parties are apparently a popular thing now-a-days.  I wouldn’t know because I’ve never been to one – or even invited! Plus, let’s be honest, even if I got an ugly Christmas sweater, I’d probably just sell it on eBay… like I already did.

When I found this sweater at the local thrift store, I honestly thought that I might use it.

Ugly Christmas Sweater Party Snowflakes
On the “ugly” spectrum, this sweater is pretty tame.
Ugly Christmas Sweater Vest
This guy has no shame. I’d need a few beers before wearing the one on the left…

I’m not a shy guy, but my sweater seemed to be a perfect fit for someone who wants to attend an ugly Christmas sweater party but didn’t want to stand out too much. On top of the relaxed design, the sweater was WARM. It was Shetland Wool, and I made sure to include that in the title since these are important keywords.

Here’s the details of this sale:

  • Purchase price – $4
  • End Selling Price – $34.99
  • Fees and Shipping/Handling – $10.25

Total Profit: $20.74

This ugly sweater sold within a week. I could have even saved another $0.09 by using a Priority Mail Padded Flatrate Envelope. USPS ships these to your house FOR FREE, and they save you a ton of money when you’re shipping across the country.

Just as an FYI, you may have to re-list clothing that’s holiday specific a few times until it gets a little closer. For an ugly Christmas sweater, it will probably sell in the October – November time frame since the season is right around the corner and most parties are right after Thanksgiving.

Ugly Western or Aztec Shirts

Western and Aztec clothing is popular now according to some of the eBay experts like The Bonafide Hustler. I’ll take him at his word since I’ve done pretty well in this category even though I think the patterns are pretty… pretty ugly. I’m going to skip over pearl snap shirts because that’s worthy of a post on its own.

Aztec is a keyword which gets thrown around a lot, but I use it when there’s the jagged pattern or a dessert theme.

Azted Pattern Dress
The Aztec pattern is not the first thing to jump out and grab my attention from this dress… The chunk at the bottom is the specific pattern I was talking about

And here’s the Aztec themed Territory Ahead shirt that I recently sold:

Ugly Azted Shirt
Ugly to me, awesome to some other guy.

Let’s just assume he also wore a cowboy hat, snake skin boots, and a bolo tie to complete the outfit. Or maybe he’s just a hipster. Either way, I made some good money on this shirt.

  • Purchase price – $4
  • End Selling Price – $29.99
  • Fees and Shipping/Handling – $7.64

Total Profit: $18.35

Ugly Clothing – It grabs your attention!

The best part about ugly clothing like this is that it jumps out at you when you’re looking through the clothes racks at the thrift store. It does the work for you! And that’s the point. Clothing like this isn’t made to be worn in board rooms. It’s got personality.  It’s made for fun, and I’m betting the people who purchased these shirts from me had a blast.

-Dollar Flipper

Photo Credit: The Ugly Sweater Shop, Angela Dissected

Roth IRA Goal Update March 2014

Over the $1,000 hump for my Roth IRA goal!

13Mar2014 Roth IRA Update
That line is slowly movin’ on up. Watch out Jeffersons!

Roth IRA Goal

$1,101.99 invested in the 2014 Roth IRA so far! Considering that March is ~ half over, I’m on track for $5,289.55. Obviously, that’s a little short, but I’m sure I’ll make up the ground!

For those wondering what my allocations are, I generally follow the guidance of JLCollinsNH, Mr. Money Mustache, Johnny Moneyseed, and the most down-to-earth/realistic of the bunch, J. Money.

These bloggers all fall in line with what I learned reading A Random Walk Down Wall Street: The Time-Tested Strategy for Successful Investing by Burton G. Malkiel. The basic (VERY BASIC, please check out the blogs or book above for more in depth info on the ins/outs!) premise is that you cannot beat the stock market in the long run. Even if you know everything possible about one company, and know it’s exact value, it can either go up or down for some reason (maybe a sale, or some tank explodes).

The point is that you can never know how a company will do, so it’s much safer to invest in index funds, something like VTSAX from Vanguard, which allow you to have the whole market in your portfolio for one of the smallest fees (expense ratio). Instead of just investing in one risky stock, you’ve got a hand in ALL of them (or there abouts).

This strategy might not make sense for someone who’s older and closer to retirement, but for my young family, it’s a good one. In the long run, the stock market goes up, and we don’t plan on touching our Roth IRAs for a long time (even that tempting principle).

Ignoring all of the fancy details on where/how you’re investing, the best place to start is actually tracking your spending  and beginning to save any money. A dollar sitting in your checking account is still better than $1 spent on a bottle of soda. I seriously don’t even know if you can even get a soda for that much anymore. I don’t know the last time I bought one!

My wife and I started tracking our spending last March, and this coincides with the start of my online re-selling business.

LOL “Overtime”

Like most salaried employees, I don’t have an option to work overtime, so I needed to find some sort of side hustle. Buffering my full-time job with eBay and Amazon sales is my method.

2013 was the first year that we were able to fully fund our Roth IRAs, and we’d love to keep that rolling in 2014.

If you’re as interested in personal finance as I am, check out my post detailing my 2014 goal and plan of attack to completely fund my 2014 Roth IRA ($5,500) using only online re-selling!

-Dollar Flipper

Powerpuff Girls 10th Anniversary DVD Box Set

As I sit here sipping on my Oolong tea with the baby soundly asleep, I think back on the days where I had 2 big questions in life. First, “Why can’t I keep playing outside? So what if it’s dark!” and second, “If I can’t play outside, can I go watch cartoons?”

Oh to be 10 again.

Serious Kid Playing
Even if you dress a kid up he’s going to have fun in a playground!  Although this kid doesn’t really look like he’s having such a blast…

You may be wondering – why all the nostalgia? I just can’t get a recent Amazon flip of mine out of my head!

Powerpuff Girls

Any of my readers who are still in the 30 year old +/- 8 range should remember the Powerpuff Girls. You have your pretty standard superhero back story. Crazy professor doing experiments in his lab, knocks over a secret chemical (Chemical X) into his mixing tank, and BOOM. Three young, flying, super powered 5 year old sisters come popping out! Talk about cliche.

Now I’m probably not going to convert anyone into a Powerpuff Girls fan, but I really did enjoy the show. Even saw an episode or two recently, and it was still pretty good; surprisingly, it actually had some deep/dark themes. I’m betting all of you older folks wouldn’t mind watching some Scooby-Doo or Jonny Quest, so please, humor me a bit here.

Real-Life-Van-Mystery-Machine
This guy knows what I’m talking about… ZOINKS!

I guess what I’m trying to get at is that….

Nostalgia Sells

We’ve hit on a lot of nostalgic items on here before from Christmas ornaments and crafts, to toy trucks and planes. Hell, I’ve even flipped stuffed animals. The common theme in all of these items is that they make the buyer think of times gone by. They don’t have to worry about the stuff in their life that isn’t going so well (health, wealth, etc.). Buying these items gives them a chance to relive some memories and feelings from their past, and hopefully those feelings can translate to a new, better future.

By re-selling, you’re getting stuff that someone didn’t want (bought at a garage sale, thrift store, or flea market), and re-locating it to someone who really does want it.

I’d argue that your service as a reseller adds up to a positive net benefit. The original person gets some $$$ or at least de-clutters,  and someone else gets an item that they wanted or needed. You just happen to get paid a relocation fee (or at least thinking about it this way gives me a warm and fuzzy feeling)!

Amazon or eBay – Running the Numbers

Powerpuff Girls 10th Anniversary DVD Box Set
Powerpuff Girls 10th Anniversary DVD Box Set – be on the lookout for it!

I mostly sell items on Amazon or eBay, rarely on both. This Powerpuff DVD Box Set sold on Amazon. I was able to list the item right after I bought it, in the car, from my Profit Bandit app (best $15 I’ve ever spent on an app).

Here’s the details of the Amazon sale:

  • Purchase price – $4
  • End Selling Price – $39.45
  • Fees and Shipping/Handling – $7.52

Total Profit: $27.93

Perfect flip. I sold the Powerpuff DVD set on Amazon within a week. I didn’t have to take pictures or work on listings. I just quickly put the DVDs on to make sure they worked (I may have watched a few episodes… :-/ ).

Let’s check out the hypothetical eBay numbers to see if I made the right decision assuming the same sale price (pretty reasonable if you compare to eBay completed listings):

  • Purchase price – $4
  • End Selling Price – $39.45
  • Fees and Shipping/Handling – $8.64

Total Profit: $26.81

Well that makes me pleasantly surprised! By selling the Powerpuff Girls DVD set on AMazon, I was able to save time AND money! Win-Win! There were some higher sales on eBay, so I could have had a higher ceiling, but still, with the minimal work involved for listing, the Amazon route seemed to be the way to go for this flip.

-Dollar Flipper

Photo Credit: Raphaël Labbé, Pat Loika,

Conair Hot Sticks Spiral Rollers eBay

Remember, no judging when it comes to a buyers taste! I’m still trying to wrap my head around this flip.

Conair Hot Sticks are apparently hot….

Conair Hot Sticks eBay
I think my wife thought I wanted to give her some extra curls…

Now, I know I’m a little behind on the times, but whoever bought this sucker is just living straight up in the past. The date on the box is 1997!

When I picked the item up off the shelf, I didn’t actually think it would make me any money. I just saw something in a box that was taped shut. Looked it up on my eBay app and saw some recent sales so I figured what the hell!

When I did bring my haul home, I showed my wife, asking her, “what are these for?!?!”

Here’s your answer.

Curlers

Curlers eBay Olympics
I don’t think I picked the right curlers…

Confession: I was trying to find one of those Toddlers and Tiaras pictures where the girl has crazy curly hair. This came up instead. Close enough!

But yes, these hot curlers are very popular for pageants. They wrap the hair around the stick and then bend it so it looks like a little O so it all stays in place. “Pageant” was actually one of my keywords that I added in the title, specifically because other sellers used it successfully.

Something important I learned on this flip was to bring in an expert when you’re out of your element. Even those pros on Pawn Stars are calling some collector friend of theirs who’s into some wacky doodad.

I was lucky enough to have the expert right in my house! My wife sure is great when it comes to putting up with my crazy questions/items. She opened up the box, plugged it in, and let me know that it was working perfectly and was definitely never used!

The fact that it was not used when we took it out of the already opened box qualifies the item as New Old Stock (NOS). I clarified my item as “New in Box,” and noted that it was opened so we could do the testing just to be safe.

NOS can be very collectible, but it’s also a finicky area. Make sure you disclose the item as NOS. Otherwise, someone can open the box, the item won’t work, and they’ll be clamoring for a refund. You’ll most likely come out of the situation with some negative feedback, so it’s best to be as clear as possible about the item!

Here are the details on my flip:

  • Purchase price – $2.00
  • End Selling Price – $34.99
  • Fees and Shipping/Handling – $9.05

Total Profit:  $23.94

I barely had this set listed for a week, and they sold. On top of that, it went for full price even though I had it as a best offer! If it had gone to California, I’d probably have lost another $3-4 on shipping, but I lucked out!

Weird to you = Awesome to others

Don’t be afraid to go out on a limb; if you’ve done your research using the eBay app, it can’t hurt to take a $2 shot. At least this was an educated guess vs someone using a slot machine in a casino (I refer to the slots as reverse ATMs. I put money in and never see it again).

New Conair items seem to be a pretty safe bet. Check out some of these completed listings!

Conair eBay Completed Listings Updated
You can call me old fashioned, but I’ve always been a fan of the “hand” for styling my hair.

There’s a lot of ladies out there who put a ton of work/effort into the way they look, and these completed listings show that they’re willing to pay for items that make the process easier! Give them a friendly hand by selling them some good Conair equipment!

And on the “expert” note, if you ever have questions about an item, drop me a comment on a post or use the contact page up above! I’ll try to be quick about a response to help you make some $$$ on a flip.

-Dollar Flipper

Photo Credit: Jonathan Pope

Edit: I updated the Conair completed listings picture. A friendly reader Ronda pointed out that all three were the same seller and were all selling for the same exact price (over $300).  These items aren’t normally that high, so I’ve shown items that actually sell above $100.  Still something you want to keep an eye out for!