My wife & I have never gone cruising far enough to have a need to sell up our worldly possessions, but I do sell a lot of 'stuff' on Craigslist & Surrey Re-Uses ... both marine
& household items; as well, I hold a Garage sale every spring of tools & household items. I have a lot of success in all cases. I have never sold on E-bay & rarely ship anything unless I get a request. The buyer must then agree to pay by Pay-pal incl. shipping
costs which I check & advise costs ahead of sale. I've sold a number of items over the past few years to some very satisfied U.S. customers but they know up front there has to be a certain amount of trust to do this. Usually through a phone
I find the most important part of selling pretty much anything is, Clean everything well, & package small items if possible. eg: for Marine
items such as shackles, blocks etc. I use Zip-lock Baggies. This way, I can label & price
every item. Bigger stuff I will find cardboard boxes to accommodate the item.
As for pricing items, I find people do not like to ask "how much?" so it is important to price
items both clearly & realistically. It depends on whether the item is "unused & as new" … or "used" The former I price at 70% of retail & the latter at 50% … obo. (or best offer).
In all cases, everything is negotiable … within reason. As for 'low-ball' offers, I simply tell those people where the Thrift Stores are in town, & they do NOT bargain on prices. I also visit those Thrift Stores myself & I know what their prices are. Occasionally I will adjust my prices if needed to stay at or slightly below theirs. Don't forget, Thrift Stores rarely, if ever, purchase
their stock as it is usually donated. They usually have a sign on the counter by the cash register stating they have researched the value of their goods & believe them to be fairly priced. Please do not try to bargain on our prices because staff are not authorised to adjust posted prices. This means I'm at liberty to undercut them if I really want to move something.
With Craigslist lo-baller's, I simply tell them: "Thanks for your offer, but I find if I leave the item on CL long enough, eventually someone will buy it at my asking price. Now, do want to buy it or not?" Usually, if they really want it, they'll buy it. . . . Works for me more often than not.
One thing to keep in mind is, there are a lot of Flea Market sellers doing the rounds of garage sales looking for bargains to resell so you're well advised to "know your values" … You've probably heard the story of the fellow who tried selling a spinnaker
pole on the dock
beside his boat in the marina.
The pole was well priced & there was lots of interest shown by one fellow on the same dock
who really wanted it, but he was your typical Lo-baller. The owner dropped his price a couple of times but each time the would-be customer offered even less.
Eventually, the owner placed a large sign on it, showing a much higher price. The "buyer" came by, saw the sign & asked: "What the hell? you were willing to sell that pole to me yesterday for $xxx.00, why the price hike?" To which the seller responded: "I know, but it was obviously the wrong price because everyone thought at that low price, there must be something wrong with it. It is now correctly priced & there will be no reduction from the posted price." … at that, the other fellow is said to have bought the pole at the new price. Whether that story is true or not, I cannot say but:-
I too had a very good used (looked like new) Spinnaker
Pole for sale
for the last two years. I advertised it on CL at a very attractive price but it did not sell. I remembered the old story & thought, what the hell? I've got nothing to lose, why not try it. So I raised my price considerably. After a few months off of CL, I advertised it again. It sold to the first person responding & I gained an additional $150 over my original asking price. So, … KNOW YOUR VALUES.
Pictures! VERY IMPORTANT … Yes, I know it's a lot of work
, but the old adage "a picture is worth a thousand words" is very, very true. Sometimes it's prudent to show from more than one angle. Also, try to show only one item per ad on CL. I've tried showing numerous items of sailboat gear
on one photo, but people obviously do not care to search your photo to see if you have the 'one & only item' they're interested in buying
This is merely my personal experience, not a lecture on "how to sell".
I now have to sell my boat; that is a little more complicated & challenging, because it is a 'traditional' design with teak
decks & I know you guys do not like teak
decks & trim. I've tried selling through a broker
over the last two years but he has only brought three would-be buyers in that time so I shall try selling it myself. Didn't want to do this because of poor health
. I cannot even take it out for a trial sail due to physical balance problems.