Archives For craigseasy

I’ve talked about buying stuff on craigslist quite a bit (here, here, and here) but I’ve never talked about how I sell things on craigslist. In order to remedy that one-sidedness here is how I sell things (not people) on craigslist. I think it might work too because I put three items up for sale on Friday at 6:00 pm and all three items sold in 24 hours!

1) Take good pictures.

I’m not talking about the quality of the camera you use, I mean take pictures of the furniture or items while they are still in use. For example, here a picture of the white glass coffee table I just sold:

And here’s a picture I took after I’d moved it to another room with the intent to sell it:
See the difference between the two images? I think it really helps for people to see the piece you are trying to sell when it’s in use. The top image is also much more eye catching which is beneficial when you are trying to sell something. I also include multiple pictures, usually about three. One or two of the item in use and one or two detail shots (or of defective areas which I’ll talk about in a minute).
2) Be descriptive and personable in your ad. 
Yes, you are only selling a piece of furniture but it doesn’t hurt to make your ad interesting. Here is the ad I wrote for the coffee table above:
I have a round white glass coffee table on wheels. It is the IKEA STRIND coffee table which retails for $99 (here). This coffee table is in great condition and I have been very happy with it I’m just changing my living room around. It is 30″ in diameter and 16″ tall. If you want more info or pictures please email me! $50 cash.

Here is the information I always include in my ads:
A) A description of the item. If the piece you are selling is a name brand or from a famous store include that. If the item is still for sale include a link. 
B) Information about the condition of the piece. The coffee table was actually in great condition so I didn’t have to talk about defects, but when I sold the red chair I included this picture:
And explained that there was a small amount of fraying that was happening. The point is that you want to be open about the condition of the piece. It doesn’t benefit you to take a picture that hides a major flaw of the piece because when someone comes over to see it they will notice the crack or long scratch and they either won’t buy it or they will ask for a major price reduction.
C) Say why you are selling the piece. This is the personable part of the ad. I always say why I’m selling something. Of course I could just lie but I try to be honest. For the coffee table and the red chair I said that I was changing up my living room but that I liked each piece. For the red chair I said it was the most comfortable chair ever and I meant it!
D) Even though it takes a little more work I always measure a piece and include the dimensions. If I’m looking to buy something and dimensions aren’t included I always ask for them so you might as well provide them at the start.
E) Price and contact info. I always include how I want to be contacted. Some people will include their phone number but I prefer to just use the anonymous email they provide. Then include your price and I always say ‘cash’ just to be clear even though I think it’s obvious. Sometimes I’ll put OBO (or best offer) but not always. Pricing is totally personal decision. If you want to just get rid of something you can price it really low. If you want to sell it quickly but also get a good price it doesn’t hurt to search for similar items on craigslist and see what they are going for. If I’m selling a piece that is still for sale at a store (like the table above) I generally say about half the original price. And if your item doesn’t sell in a week you can always lower the price.
3) Wait for a response.
If you are selling a decent piece of furniture with good pictures and thorough description at a good price it is pretty likely that you will sell it. Like I said, I sold three large pieces of furniture in 24 hours so I’m kind of awesome at this haha. When you get a response you can proceed from there. Some people will offer you a lower price and you can either negotiate or say the price is firm. If they want to come look at it schedule a time for them to come over. I have only had safe and pleasant craigslist experiences but if you are nervous make sure you aren’t home alone. I also don’t give out my address until they are on their way, I know it doesn’t make much of a difference but it makes me feel a little safer. For example, if they email me on a Friday and say they’d like to look at it on Sunday I’ll say, “Great, email me when you are ready to come over and I’ll send you my address.” I’ve never had anyone complain about that.
I’ve purchased a lot more from craigslist than I have sold (I’ve purchased about 18 things and sold 6) but I think it is a great way to sell your furniture too. It takes maybe 15 minutes to set up an ad, a little time emailing back and forth with the interested buyer, then a 15 minute pick up appointment, and you’re done. Much more efficient than a garage sale and I think you will make more money too. Though I am no expert, (but I probably could be if there was such a title as ‘Craigslist Expert’) I am happy to answer any questions you have.
Good luck!

Life is funny sometimes. I had a whole post written about my long term plan for my living room. I even taped out things so I could better show you how it would look and then, bam! Another piece of the puzzle came into place.

What I was going to tell you is that I want a second couch. I’ve been wanting one since the day I bought my first couch but at $599 I couldn’t afford two. So I’ve been waiting until I could save up enough money to get a second one.

Here is what I taped out to show you what it would look like:

I’ve been pretty vocal about my self imposed craigslist ban but I broke it on Friday. I did a quick search and found that someone was selling my exact couch in great condition for $300. Yep, that’s literally half the price of a new one! I emailed them right away and scheduled to pick it up on Sunday. So back to Friday, I had just found the couch I’ve wanted for a year for half the price and I didn’t have to make a 3 hour round trip drive to IKEA when I remembered the chair. Remember the red chair?
It may not be the most fashionable of chairs but dang it if it isn’t the most comfortable thing ever. My old roommate and I would fight over who got to sit in it!
But sadly, to make room for bigger and better things she had to go. I listed her on craigslist and sold it within 15 minutes! My fastest craigslist sell ever.
Fast forward to Sunday here is my new living room minus the red chair, plus my thrift shop ottoman, and plus a new-to-me couch:
I’m so happy! I just fell in love with my little house all over again. The best part is I saved $300 (not including what I made from selling the red chair and white glass coffee table which also sold really fast).
Now I can comfortably seat six people (two on each couch and two in the wing backs or eight if people want to get comfortable). And if I have a major rager more people can sit on the ottoman or bring in dining room chairs (I think I need to make more friends before that is going to be necessary). Also, not hating the ottoman fabric as much any more. Or maybe I’m just really starting to freak out about reupholstering it. I took the broken wheels off and so it now sits evenly and in pictures at least it looks good (in person it shows a lot of wear).
It was a busy busy craigslist weekend for me, but I’m very happy with the result!

Another Craigslist Post

October 30, 2012 — 1 Comment

I have sung the praises of Craigslist many a time (here, here, here), but today is an exception. As much as I love what I find on Craigslist I really hate the user experience of their website. I do have to give them props for really sticking to their original format though. I’ve been using Craigslist for like five years and their webpage hasn’t changed one bit. But what I don’t like is when you click furniture you get a list that looks like this:

And then in order to see the image (I would never buy something without seeing an image first) you have to click through to each individual ad. I find this annoying because I will read an ad like this, “full size headboard” which is so generic it could look like anything that I basically have to click through in order to know what it looks like.

This is not something I am even remotely interested in but I wasted that time clicking through to the ad and then clicking back to the furniture list just to find that out. I want to be able to breeze through my search not waste my time clicking through to weird bed frames.

The solution? CraigsEasy. I love this! You may have already heard of it and use it, but if not I think you will really like. I found this about a year ago and it blew my mind! It works sort of like Pinterest in that you download a button for your bookmarks bar. You follow the instructions listed and then presto! You get this:

Pictures! I love this so much because you can easily scroll through and see all the images and find what you are looking for. This really cuts down on my Craigslisting time and helps me to see only the ads with pictures (which are the only ones I’m interested in anyway).

If this is old news to you, my apologies, but I wanted to share it with those of you that haven’t yet heard of it.

Happy Craigslisting!