For many side hustlers, flipping seems reserved for houses, cars, and other major investments. However, you can flip anything from a doll to a chest of drawers and make money off it! If you’re looking for the best items to flip, look no further. I’ll provide you with a complete guide to flipping items in the cheaper ranges.
Flipping isn’t for the faint of heart– you have to be willing to see the beauty in the junk, so to speak. If you look at an old dresser and think it looks like trash instead of treasure, maybe flipping isn’t for you.
However, if you’re someone who can’t bear to throw things away because of their potential value, you might be able to make some serious money flipping. Flipping small items or quick flips can make a person up to $5,000 a month if they can flip a few smaller things a week.
You can flip whatever you want, but it’ll help to focus on your passions. Whatever your favorite hobbies and interests are, base your flipping ideas and techniques on those. Love cars? Flip car parts (you don’t have to re-engineer an entire vehicle to make money). Into dolls and stuffed animals? Flip them and sell them for some cash. The key is to invest in products you can buy cheap and sell high.
Flipping pros and cons
Like anything, flipping has its pros and cons. Let’s weigh in on those below.
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How much money can I make from flipping?
You can make as much money from flipping items as you are willing to put into it. Some people flip with most of their spare time and earn up to $5,000 a month. Others only do it on the weekends or every other Tuesday and get from $50 to $100 a month. It depends on how much time you have available and how much work you are willing to put in.
Is flipping items illegal?
Of course, before you start any new hobby or side hustle, you want to know how legal it is. Luckily, flipping and reselling individual items is legal. This is because you are not labeling them as new but used. However, it’s important to research carefully, as selling over a certain amount of goods or using branded trademarks may require permits.
Where to find things to flip
When you first start flipping items, you might have some issues finding things to resell with potential. Well, don’t worry, because there are plenty of places where you can buy stuff for cheap (or even free) and resell them later. Here are some of the best:
- Your own house (flip and resell things you don’t use anymore!)
- Your friends and family
- Garage, yard, and estate sales
- Thrift stores
- Craigslist or eBay (Craigslist has a free section)
- Facebook Marketplace
- Dumpster diving, if you’re brave and don’t mind getting dirty (check if it’s legal where you live!)
Popular platforms to flip items
The beauty of flipping used articles is that you can usually sell them at the same place you got them, especially if you bought them online. Here are some of the most popular platforms for flipping items that generally only require login information:
- Facebook Marketplace–accessible and local
- Amazon Seller: you can create your seller account and ship used items
- Personal website
Most of these websites will allow you to upload an accurate description of the item with pictures, and you can sell it to the highest bidder or for a fixed price. However, if you’re flipping furniture and larger items, it might be better to go with Facebook Marketplace or Craigslist, both based locally, to avoid high shipping costs.
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Best items to resell for profit
Of course, if you want to make the most of flipping, you want larger margins on your items. To buy a shirt for $5 and sell it for $8 isn’t much of a profit, especially if you had to put work into repairing it! If you want to make the most money on the least amount of items, look for these categories of items when shopping.
The rarer an item is, the more people are willing to pay for it. To find a rare item and flip it, you’ll need to have some working knowledge of the market. This is where flipping through your hobbies and interests will help you–previous knowledge of what you’re flipping will be valuable for finding rare items!
Of course, everyone loves an old item in great shape. Whether you resell it as-is or do some tasteful restoration, vintage items sell very well on online flipping platforms. You can sell these flipped items to a vintage-loving decorator, an individual, or even an antique shop!
Depending on the condition of the items and their rarity, selling things like vintage jewelry or clothes on platforms like Etsy or Worthy can pull in anywhere from $200 to thousands a month.
Broken items that have been repaired
If you have a knack for fixing things, you’ll do great flipping and selling things. Things that were broken and you’ve repaired, especially rare or vintage items, have a massive market in the flipping world. Likewise, if you find something old and doesn’t work anymore (like a record player or a VHS recorder), you might be able to make quite a lot of money off it if you can restore it to working order.
Last but not least, the crown jewel of any person’s toy collection is the one they don’t have. If you have some collectible toys, there is sure to be someone willing to spend lots of money to complete their set. Of course, this also takes a little knowledge of what is being collected, but you may be able to make thousands by flipping and selling collectible items.
Checking online databases for selling prices of collectible toys may help you recognize some of these hidden gems the next time you’re at a yard sale.
Easiest items to flip for cash
If you don’t have as much time or money to put into flipping, you can also look at the easiest items to flip. With a bit of time and effort, you can make money just by recovering these items and reselling them. After all, they say that one man’s trash is another man’s treasure. They just need to buy it from you!
Furniture is a classic item to flip. You can paint, reupholster, or polish used furniture to give it new life before you sell it! If you’re casually selling furniture, you may make anywhere from $50-$500 a month.
Specialty items like blenders and ice cream machines can fetch a lot of money if you find them cheap and flip them. If you can find appliances in good working condition, you can possibly make a couple hundred a month by selling them.
Clothes and wearables
Reselling clothes on platforms like ThredUp, Poshmark, or Etsy is one of the fastest ways to make some extra cash. With current platforms seeing increases of up to 42% from the previous year, selling used clothing can bring in solid profits.
Equipment and tools
Garage sales and thrift stores are great places to look for used equipment and tools, sometimes brand new! If you’re able to find working equipment, you could rake in a couple hundred to a couple thousand a month. With eBay and Home Depot in the list of top ten visited websites, power tools and equipment prove to be in high demand.
Records and record players
Many of these items are vintage. Although several artists are releasing their albums on vinyl, vintage record players (especially classic record players) are tough to come by.
Did you attend a concert in high school and still have the shirt? Somewhere, someone wants that specific tour shirt as part of a collection.
Old watches are great to flip, as long as they’re functional (or you can fix them). Vintage and antique watches can bring in a decent amount of money if you buy low and sell high.
Jewelry and purses
Jewelry and purses always have a willing market. Facebook Marketplace is a great place to flip these. If you can find used designer bags, try selling them on Rebag. You can often make thousands of dollars on used designer bags.
Vintage board games
Jumanji, anyone? Any vintage game in good condition will sell well to a collector.
Musical instruments and equipment
Musical instruments are wildly expensive bought new, so flipped instruments can make you money. If you can find name-brand instruments like Yamaha, you can easily make decent money.
Another item that’s pretty expensive new is used photography equipment. It typically sells fast and at a reasonable price. Cameras and lenses can go for hundreds, if not thousands, of dollars.
Used bikes are a great way to make money, especially if you’re handy with fixing flats and replacing chains.
Although this is a larger item to flip, it will be a great side hustle. They’re hard to find, but you can sell these at classic car shows! Just be sure to study your local laws and learn how to protect your sale when selling used vehicles.
Everyone is trying to get good deals on shoes. If you have any pairs that aren’t too used, you’re likely to sell them fast on platforms like Vinted, Poshmark, or eBay.
Although this doesn’t feel like a classic flipping item, those handy with the web can flip a website for a price. Some even make up to 6 figures flipping websites! To get an idea of how much websites are going for, take a look at Empire Flippers.
Buying several cheap domain names and reselling them at a higher price is a great way to invest with very little time input on your part.
Of course, the classic flipping method is buying an old house, fixing it, and reselling it. This category takes the most time. But, with the average profit in 2021 being $73,766, if you have the time, flipping houses can be highly profitable.
Books might be one of the easiest items to flip. You can set up an Amazon shop and resell as many books as you can find (and you can find a lot). Amazon even provides users with a guide to get them started.
Experienced booksellers can make anywhere from $50 for every $10 spent.
Collectibles of any kind will make you money, and sports cards are popular. Buying low and selling high can sometimes rake in thousands of dollars.
Believe it or not, scrap metal can make you money! Sell it to a metal company or an artist for some quick cash.
Baby and child gear
Babies grow, and baby clothes are expensive. So sell your slightly used children’s clothes and make some money while helping another parent.
Video games and consoles
Gamers love cheap games and consoles. If they’re vintage–even better! This is a very profitable area.
Used strollers are a sell, especially since new strollers can be pretty expensive.
Complete LEGO sets will yield a profit, especially if you received them as a gift or bought them a long time ago.
Want to change the decor in your home? Before you donate, try selling decor items and make some cash for your new decorations.
Phones and laptops
Although technology is ever-shifting, old phones and laptops can still make you money (provided they aren’t too old). With the global used cellphone market predicted to reach $39 billion by the year 2025, you’ll want to get in on the game.
You might be seeing a pattern here–things that are expensive to buy new (like yard equipment) are excellent for flipping and reselling.
Paintings and art
Reselling paintings is a great way to make money. If you’re an artist, even better! Sell your paintings!
It’s not just the Beanie Babies’ rage of the 1990s. Stuffed animals are in demand, especially when they’re re-stuffed or freshened up a bit.
Lastly, commercial equipment is a pricy investment but can earn you some serious money!
Tips for successful flipping
To make flipping your part-time side hustle, you want to do as little work for as much money as possible. To make this happen, you’ve got to be good at flipping. Here are a few of my tips and tricks to become a successful flipper:
- Always be on the lookout for new items to flip. No matter where you are, be prepared to grab a deal.
- Flip things in your interest or hobby–you’ll know more about it and have more fun with the transactions.
- Tell friends and family that you’ll take their used stuff (whatever category you flip). That’s free inventory!
- Set up accounts on multiple platforms–what doesn’t sell on Facebook may go quick on Etsy.
- Don’t bite off more than you can chew: if you have limited time, don’t buy more, then you’ll have time to flip.
- Sell for reasonable prices. Even if something is worth a lot of money, you might find more success selling more things for lower prices (as long as you still make a profit).
- Have fun! A side hustle isn’t worth it if you’re not having fun with your spare time.
With that, you have a guide to flipping and selling. Don’t be afraid to try to flip some things even if you only get $50! Starting small and building up your catalog can help give you an idea of what sells and what doesn’t. Happy flipping!