A decluttered closet = a fresh wad of cash. Or a new Gucci bag.
If, like us, you worship at the altar of fashion and inevitably find yourself with a closet full of items you no longer want, then it’s time you did some crafty couture-culling – if only to make room and money for even more things!
But no need to be so profligate as to simply chuck things out. The savvy fashionista knows that you can easily recoup some of what you’ve spent by selling your pre-loved items to someone who can give them a good home. They get a bargain, you get closet space — and a wad of cash to blow on a new Gucci Dionysus! Everybody wins.
If you have been living under a rock for the past couple of years, you might not have heard of it, but pretty much everyone else in Singapore should be well-acquainted with online marketplace and addictive phone app Carousell. The clue is in the name — you simply advertise your wares by posting photos of your stuff and negotiating with prospective buyers.
Easy, right? Well, perhaps not so much anymore. There is a lot of relentless “noise” there now, with thousands of people competing for the same eyeballs and inappropriately co-opting search terms so that your items might end up lost in a sea of worthless tat. Then there are the ridiculous low-ballers and chancers intent on wasting your time.
But with a bit of practice and some artfully-taken photographs to set your items apart, you could find yourself making good money off the forgotten stuff of last season.
These were an international marketplace long before Carousell was born, but they endure to this day likely because of their relative simplicity. Shoppers either search for a specific item or browse by categories to trawl for good deals, making it easy to navigate. The listings are free to post, and negotiations are conducted privately between buyer and seller, so there is no material downside to listing there.
You could go weeks without a reply, though, so don’t expect to get rich quick on these sites. Also, don’t be distracted by the other, less savoury ads — remember, not everyone is on there searching for a missed connection or dodgy massage…
The venerable online auction site is home to some interesting and rare items, with an international audience. Yes, you can localise your listing, but search results are open to viewers all over the globe, so you could potentially sell your rare denim Chanel 2.55 to a wealthy impulse buyer on another continent.
It can be a little tricky and anxiety-inducing to sell on eBay, however, as there is a bidding process involved, and unless you set a reserve price you could end up selling your item for nearly nothing. Making or receiving payment across borders could also be a sticking point. Also, because your item is seen all over the world, you are competing with hundreds of thousands of other similar ads.
Now we’re in serious territory. Deluxemall calls itself Singapore’s No 1 classifieds site for branded handbags, and with more than 340,000 forum posts for Hermès alone, who are we to doubt them?
Many of the ads appear unique and legitimate (unlike many eBay ads of dubious origin), lending confidence to prospective buyers. However, as it is run as a forum rather than anonymous adverts (such as on Gumtree or Craigslist), you do have to register yourself and possibly build up some cred first. Creating an eye-catching listing using a forum can be tricky, especially when it comes to images.
Keep in mind that the most-read forums are for bags; other deluxe items like shoes and watches are less-viewed, but they are all recently active so it would still be worth listing your most prized wares on them.
Yes, people really still go out and sell things, if only on occasion. Flea markets were once more popular — although the advent of Carousell has probably been partly responsible for their decline. (Remember Zouk’s monthly “Flea and Easy”?)
But, if you’re feeling adventurous, you might enjoy setting up shop at one of the few flea markets still going strong, such as Flea Party and Queen’s Market, held at Lucky Plaza and Queensway Shopping Centre, respectively (see fleawhere.com for details). Stall rentals could be prohibitive, with rates starting at S$50 to S$60 per day depending on location, but the foot traffic around the malls could be a real boon! Who knows, if sales go well you could wind up making this a regular thing — and thankfully, there are flea markets planned through the middle of September 2016.
Also check out dukesbazaars.com‘s New Start Up Market, which are flea market kiosks for casual vendors in conjunction with *SCAPE Marketplace. These booths are cheaper than the Flea Party or Queen’s Market ones, so they could be worth a gander.
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By Alexa Fang
Alexa is a pop-culture vulture. She lives to read, write and travel, and decided long ago that life is stranger than fiction. When she’s having croissant, she thinks in French. “31 Rue Cambon” is her favourite address, and she believes that money one enjoyed spending is never money wasted.