Looking to earn a few extra bucks off those outgrown baby outfits? Read this guide to see how to price used baby clothing so that it actually sells!
My little boy has been growing like crazy – he’s been tall from the start – and therefore I’ve been looking into buying second hand. I was surprised by some of the prices people had to offer.
Selling your used baby clothing is a great idea, as they are usually gently used. While I’ll wear something for a few years, my little one wears it for as little as a couple of weeks (size newborn) or months. That means that some things are worn only a few times….
I did a google search: “How to price used baby clothes“, and of course most of the results came from the perspective of the seller. The others did not give a clear “how to” and just said to make it cheap. I decided to put together some pointers from the perspective of the buyer.
Remember, that having an item sit on eBay racks up fees. You’d rather sell than overcharge and have clutter. Here are some pointers:
6 tips on how to price used baby clothing:
1. Consider the current value, not what you paid.
If it’s used, it’s probably last season. If you paid full price for it last season, I could probably get it for at least half that NEW in a discount store such as Marshall’s or Burlington. If it is a brand such as Carter’s or Childrens’s place, you probably did not pay the full list price (I hope not!) So take into account what I would find it for in the store new.This means that you must know the market of baby clothing. Use that as your starting point for what you could charge for it used.
2. Charge a MAXIMUM of half that for items in perfect condition
A couple of weeks ago, I bought this stretchie at Childrens Place for $4.80.
I bought it online so I did not pay for gas, or waste much time, and shipping was free without a minimum. Although the price is $10, if you really want to sell it, you need to take into account the dynamics of the shop. Children’s place always has a discount of at least 20% for email subscribers, so the max value of this is $8. Used it would be a maximum of $4 – without leaving a safe buffer zone. The most I’d have paid for it used is $2, knowing I can get it for $4.80. So although I’d say you can charge up to half, if you really want to sell it, I wouldn’t recommend charging more than 20-25% of the current retail price.
3. Sell items in medium-good condition in lots
I wouldn’t pay more than $.50- $1 for items that aren’t in great condition, as there tends to be some hit-and-miss. Therefore, your best bet would probably be to sell a lot of ten for a few dollars. This probably applies as well to items in perfect condition from very cheap brands (Garanimals), and individual bodysuits that usually come in a pack.
On a side note, on the topic of selling in lots, you’re best off putting items of the same (not similar) sizes together, and of course for the same season. I learned the hard way not to buy ahead as I have no idea what season he’ll fit what sizes. And I’m definitely not buying the smaller sizes.
4. New items with or without tags
When selling your “duds” – the clothing you never ended up using, consider the price I would pay in a discount store, and what season you bought it in. Keep in mind how much variety I have around it (I have loads to select from in T.J. Maxx, so I’ll definitely really like what I choose). Don’t forget that in most stores, items without tags usually end up in clearance.
For example: a romper that your child never fit into in the right season, that you paid $15 for, is now past-season. In a discount store it would probably go for no more than $10. Underscore that by at least a few dollars – more if you want it to really sell.
5. Designer clothing may be harder to sell
While you definitely are correct for charging more for designer brands, you have to consider that your audience may be smaller. I might be willing to pay $15 for a 5 piece tux if I need it, but if I don’t I won’t. And I definitely won’t pay that for a bodysuit (I don’t even pay that new!) even if it sells in Saks Fifth Avenue for $50.
I’m sure there are some who will, but it may take you longer.
6. Consider Swapping
I recently discovered this amazing website called SwapMammas. You can also look into trade parties, or even donating your used clothing!
When you’re swapping, don’t forget that the used clothing does not have the same swap value as what you bought it for. Determine the swap value according to the above guidelines. Don’t forget to take into account shipping costs from both ends.
The bottom line of pricing used baby clothing:
Whenever you sell something, you have to take into account two things:
- Your customer – Buyers of second hand are often thrifty, frugal buyers, looking to save, not spend.
- Your competition – Since we are usually on the frugal side, we are comparing your second-hand rates with clearance aisles and discount stores – not department stores!
Good luck – happy selling!