Casey Parris, known on YouTube as RockstarFlipper, publishes videos about his eBay business. He buys clothing and other things at Goodwill, yard sales, pawn shops, etc. and then sells them on eBay for a profit. He appears to be good at selling things on eBay. He famously drives a BMW i8 sportscar, an automobile that costs around $150,000. According to his videos, he drives this high-performance, luxury vehicle to yard sales and Goodwill, in pursuit of his treasures to sell on eBay. [Read more…] about Sprint vs. RockstarFlipper
As I go deeper and deeper into my version of minimalism, I’ve been selling stuff on eBay. When you start cleaning out drawers, cabinets, closets and other places extraneous things like to hide, you will become shocked at just how much stuff there is taking up space.
I’ve been throwing stuff out, donating some things to Goodwill, and posting other things to eBay. Since I’ve started this journey into minimalism, I sold 22 items on eBay for $457.35. Not too shabby for stuff I was never going to use again.
Looking for more things to post on eBay, I discovered there’s a market for used “disc only” DVDs. A buyer gets only the DVD and a sleeve for the DVD to reside in. No case, no printed material. It’s just the disc.
I have a lot of DVD and Blu-ray movies. All are sitting in a storage container. None of them have the plastic case they had when I bought them. These plastic storage cases take up way too much room. I would buy the case and put the disc in a special sleeve for storage and I would then file the movie alphabetically in a container.
I haven’t watched a movie on DVD or Blu-ray in years.
I never thought I could sell these movies because they lacked the plastic case they had when I bought them. Learning about this “disc only” marketplace on eBay changed my mind. I went to the chest and just grabbed a move from the front. I wanted to sell one as an experiment. It was the 2001 movie Thir13en Ghosts starring Tony Shalhoub.
It’s a good movie. At least that’s how I remember it.
I listed it as Buy it Now for $4.99 with free USPS First Class shipping. I did this because that’s what an overwhelming majority of “disc only” movies go for on eBay. It sold almost immediately. I realized purchasing the First Class shipping that I wouldn’t be making a profit on this sale. Altogether, this is how the financials broke down:
USPS First Class Shipping: $2.61
All said and done, I lost fourteen cents on this sale. I didn’t attend the Wharton School of Business, but that doesn’t sound like a good business model.
I didn’t realize USPS First Class shipping was so expensive. I’m used to sending boxes USPS Priority where the buyer pays for the shipping. The boxes themselves are free from the Post Office. The envelope I used was a photo mailer I bought at Target. Going forward, if I go forward, I need to come up with a cheaper container for shipping.
I need to do more research. I don’t understand how other people sell “disc only” DVDs and Blu-rays on eBay and make any money.
I made a decision last night that when I see a fake NFL jersey on eBay, I will report it to eBay. That’s right, I’ve become a snitch.
I have an email alert set up with eBay so that when someone posts a Nike Elite NFL jersey in my size, I get an immediate email alerting me to this fact. I got one of these emails like night. I looked at it and immediately knew it was a counterfeit jersey. I have a real Nike Elite NFL jersey. I bought it from the NFL Shop. I know what a real Nike Elite NFL jersey looks like.
It wasn’t even a good counterfeit jersey. So I reported it.
I use to have a negative view on snitching. I never wanted to be thought of as a snitch. The older I get, the more I just don’t care. I don’t care what people think of me, especially people who are not in my life in a meaningful way. I care what my wife thinks about me. I care what my brother and his wife think about me. I care what my wife’s family thinks about me.
That’s about it.
If you don’t want me to snitch on you, whether it’s on eBay or anywhere else, then don’t do bad shit in front of me. If you decide to do something immoral or unethical in my presence and you’re worried that I may tell someone what you did, it’s a valid concern to have. I will snitch on you.
You can count on it.
I don’t sell a lot of stuff on eBay, but when I do, I’m fairly ignorant when it comes to how much I pay eBay and PayPal to facilitate the transaction. Normally I sell low to medium value stuff. They take their fees out of my PayPal balance and I’ve never really paid much attention to it.
Early last month, I sold 44 comic book issues of the The Walking Dead in a single lot. The auction ended at $554.65. That was by far the the most expensive thing I’ve sold in 16 years on eBay. Yesterday I received an email from eBay informing me that my August statement was available.
I owe eBay $57.18.
Of that, $55.47 represents a Final Value Fee for the actual item. That looks like a flat ten percent, rounded up. Then there’s $1.72 added on as another Final Value Fee for the shipping of $17.18. This too looks to be ten percent, rounded up.
I don’t understand why I have to pay a fee on the shipping when I created the auction so the seller pays the actual amount of the shipping. I had already boxed the comics up and weighed the box so that I could list it with the initial auction. The weight along with my zip code, would allow anyone bidding on it to know exactly what they were paying for shipping.
At least in theory.
For some reason, when I listed the auction, I must have selected UPS instead of the regular US Postal Service. I didn’t even know that eBay offered UPS shipping. The buyer was charged $17.18 for UPS shipping, but when I went to PayPal to pay for the shipping through UPS, I was charged a total of $37.11 for shipping the package from Maryland to California. It would seem that eBay’s shipping calculator is a little off when it comes to UPS. I, not eBay had to eat the difference.
Speaking of PayPal, they charged me $16.88 on the transaction of $571.83, the action’s final winning bid and the incorrect shipping price. That worked out to be 2.95 percent. Not bad, but it’s not great, especially when you figure that eBay owns PayPal and is basically forcing you to use their payment gateway.
So what did it cost me in total to sell my 44 The Walking Dead comics to a stranger in California? Here’s a breakdown and a total:
That left me with $460.66 in profit. I see why people sell stuff on Craigslist or Facebook yard sale groups. Going that route, you have to actually meet up with the person to make the exchange. There’s a whole lot of reasons that is less than ideal.
I feel like eBay is charging too much money, mostly because they are.
I’m not really complaining. I had these comics in a box in the garage. I was never going to read them again. If I took them to the Hagerstown 2nd & Charles, some hipster covered with ironic tats and wearing a knitted beanie, would have probably only offered me $43 in store credit. Instead of dealing with that, I was able to take the money and spend it on a new iPad Air at Target. They had them on sale for $50 off shortly after the auction was complete. I already had an iPad, but it was the first generation model. I got it the first day they were available. It was slow and I couldn’t install any of the newer, current apps.
I’m glad I sold my comics, but I’ll think twice before selling something expensive again on eBay.