Not much new going on. Everything is cruising along nicely which is good.
I've sold a couple of items on Facebook Marketplace recently. It definitely has advantages over Ebay and I've used it to get rid of some things that have been sitting around or a while, including things that I tried unsuccessfully to sell on Ebay. The fact that there's no shipping cost helps a lot. That's what makes it hard to sell lower priced items online.
I maxed out my 401k a month or so ago so for the last couple of paychecks, I took the money that would have gone to that and put it into our Vanguard account instead. I did the full amount even though I was doing it with after-tax dollars. We have one more paycheck in December and then the 401k funding will resume, plus they upped the limit $1,000 for 2020 so it'll take a bit longer to max it.
We took advantage of the Target gift card sale today and bought $600 worth at 10% off. Last week we bought gift cards for one of our favorite restaurants. If you bought $75 they gave you an extra $20. We go there about once a month so that'll save us a bit. And yesterday I paid our auto insurance bill through PayPal with our Chase Freedom Visa which has 5% cashback on PayPal purchases this quarter. That saved me $63. $60 from Target, $20 from the restaurant, and $63 from the insurance. All of those things can really add up over time. Oh, and we bought $300 of the Target cards with our Discover card that has 5% back at Target this quarter though we're not sure if that includes gift card purchases. I'll have to wait and see.
My wife and I are going to NYC this week overnight and seeing a show. It's for her birthday. I booked the hotel on reward points so that's free. Of course the parking, dinner, and show aren't. Unfortunately, it looks like it will be very cold so we probably won't do much in the city. That's okay because I like wandering in the city much more than she does anyway.
I guess that's all the main stuff for now.
Viewing the 'eBay' Category
Not much new going on. Everything is cruising along nicely which is good.
I've been selling collectibles since 1986 and selling on ebay since 1997, not long after it started. There was even a brief time in 2000 when I sold collectibles full time when I was between jobs. In recent years, I've gone through spurts where I would list things for a few weeks and then get tired of it all and stop.
Lately, I've just felt more and more like it isn't worth my time. I got a new job 2 years ago and I'm making a whole lot more money than I used to. Not only that, but there are always opportunities for me to pick up extra hours and earn even more. It's that part that has really made me think it's time to pack in the sales thing.
Selling on ebay isn't difficult but it does take time. I have to photograph and list the items and then pack and ship them which sometimes involves a trip to the post office. I sell mostly low priced items, like under $40, so after fees it's not like I'm making a ton. But my job pays really well. I can make more in a 4 hour shift as I would make selling on ebay in a month.
As much as I actually enjoy the sales thing, there are only so many hours in a day and do I really want to spend them doing all that work just to make a few dollars? Years ago, I did it for the money. Now, I just don't need it.
I still have a lot of stuff in stock that was bought to sell. I've donated a bunch of it over the past couple of years. I'm going to start seeing what else I can donate and work on clearing it all out.
I realized that I never posted my survey income for March. Now April is over, too, so I'll update the last 2 months.
March was good and I earned $514 on surveys.
April I slacked off a bit again, partly because I was really busy all month between work, Passover and business at my synagogue and honestly partly due to laziness yet again. Still, for April, I earned $396 but I know it could have been a lot better than that.
Thanks to some increased expenses currently and upcoming including a costly car repair, some home repairs, an unplanned vacation (the cruise I posted about) and our usual summer vacation, I am more committeed than ever to maximize my survey income. The past couple of weeks, I have been really good about doing every possible survey program I can. I don't track money until it is received but I know I've done a few hundred dollars worth of surveys that I haven't gotten paid for yet (there is usually a lag of 3-4 weeks) so May should be a pretty good month.
I've also sold 6 books gotten by doing surveys since April 1 and I've gotten back on ebay. I had 2 items sell yesterday and listed 3 more last night. I will update my Ebay Challenge numbers as soon as I get a chance.
We got hit by a major Nor'easter storm today that dumped a couple of inches of rain on our area, some of which ended up in our basement which has been known to happen during particularly bad storms. As a result, I spent a good part of the day down there running the shop vac to suck up the water as it came in. Since most of it was leaking in around one window, I was able to position the vacuum just right so that I could let it run without having to hold it.
While that was happening, I spent time cleaning the disaster area we call our basement. Every time I'm down there, I tell myself I have got to start selling on ebay again since so much of what is there is my sales stock. Just looking at the table where I do my ebay work made me tired. The table was a mess, strewn with merchandise, papers, tools, craft stuff and more. There was no way I could do anything without cleaning that up, so I did. I put away a number of things that don't belong there, put some sale items on the shelves to clear table space and finally, I reset the cloth backdrop I use to take pictures of items I'm selling. There, that actually looked nice and made me want to start using the space again for its intended purpose - selling on ebay.
I photographed and wrote descriptions for 3 auctions and just finished posting them online. These are my first auctions since December. I have tons and tons of stuff to list. Now that I cleaned up my work space, I'm going to keep it that way and make ebay a regular part of my routine again.
I realized I haven't posted since the 2nd of January. I've been extremely busy at work. Not much time for anything else.
I have started getting things organized to do our taxes. Today, I worked on my ebay and half.com sales to start putting those numbers together.
I also scheduled the February mortgage payment online today. Last year, I was paying an extra $100/month to principal. I've now upped that to $200/month starting this month.
I added $215 to my wife's Roth last week and will add to mine with this next week's paycheck.
I'm continuing to do almost all of the surveys that come my way, at least the ones I qualify for. I did a $95 one today and got 2 or 3 checks this past week.
We've actually been to the casino 3 times since the first of the month which is extremely unusual. The first trip on the 1st, I won $310. The 2nd trip I went with a friend while my wife, daughter and his wife went shopping. That was more to hang out and talk than to gamble, but I did win $30. The last time, a week ago, I did extremely well. I won $800 playing three card poker though I did lose $93 of it at other games before leaving. Still, that gave me a $707 profit for the day. That puts me up over $1,300 for my last 4 casino visits. My wife and I will be going to Atlantic City probably the first or second weekend of February so hopefully, the good luck will continue.
I've sold 2 books so far this month on half.com but still haven't listed anything on ebay. I've just been too tired after work or had meetings at night. I do need to do that sometime soon.
Guess that's all for now.
All 3 of us got on a cleaning binge this weekend. As has happened before, that has resulted in me listing some items on ebay. Yesterday, my wife came across a book/CD set from a work seminar. An identical set sold last week for $22.50 so I listed her set.
Today, my daughter unearthed her Game Boy Advance. I searched and they have been selling for $20-$30 for the player alone and DD also has a lighted grip thing that should add a few dollars to the value, so I listed that.
In the process, I also listed 5 other items that I didn't find due to cleaning but it put me in the mood to unload some things.
So I've listed 7 items in 2 days. Three items already have bids and I know from experience that most bids happen on the final day so I'm sure some of the others will sell, too. So cleaning the house may bring in $50-$100 in sales if we're lucky.
I haven't listed anything on ebay for months, despite my own ebay challenge for the year. As the sidebar shows, I made nothing in July or August. September was great with book sale on Half.com and a little came in in October and November.
My wife actually spurred me to get back on ebay. We've been doing some housecleaning this weekend and she handed me a book/CD set she got at a work seminar last year and asked if I could sell it on ebay. I just listed it and found that an identical set sold last week for $22.50. I've be happy to get even my starting bid of $14.99.
Now I'm going to go down to my stock area and prepare some listings for Christmas collectible items. This week is prime time for selling that stuff.
Right now, my monthly average is only just over $70, not nearly the $100 goal I set for myself, but it's my own fault. Without this self-imposed challenge, though, I doubt I would have done anywhere near that much in sales so it certainly wasn't a failure.
I'll post a year-end summary at the end of next month. If anyone else took on this challenge, make sure you post your final numbers, too.
I had a big half.com sale today, a medical text for $29.95. My price was well below the next lowest price. I did that on purpose. I got the book for free and figured if I could get $30 for it, I'd be very happy. That brings me to 16 sales and $158.86 for the month. I'm quite happy with that.
As I've reported before, and as my sidebar shows, I got off track with my Ebay Challenge for a while in late spring and summer, earning absolutely nothing for July and August.
This month, I listed a bunch of books on half.com. I love that site. It is simple to use and stuff sells very well. The best thing is that almost all of the books that I sell are things that I get for free by doing surveys and online pharmaceutical details, so it is is pure profit.
I have sold 15 books so far this month for a total of $128.91. That puts me over my $100/month goal, though I have to exceed that to make the average for the year $100 since I didn't do much for 4 months. RIght now, my average over 9 months is only $78.18/month.
I still haven't gotten back on ebay. That is more time consuming and I just haven't had the get up and go to do it. Maybe after the Jewish holidays are over.
I posted about this on the forums, but wanted to elaborate here. I have sold books on half.com for some time and it really seems to go in waves. I'll sell nothing for weeks and weeks and then all of a sudden, I'll have a slew of sales.
Last Sunday night, I listed 9 copies of a medical book I had gotten doing surveys online. By Friday, all 9 copies had sold. Not only that, but since then, 2 other books that I had listed weeks ago also sold. So that's 11 sales in 8 days.
For those who have books lying around that you don't need, this is a simple place to try and sell them. There is no cost unless the item sells. Half.com handles all the details and collects from the buyer and sends you a payment on your account twice each month automatically. It is much simpler than ebay.
I admit it. I've failed at my own challenge. At the beginning of the year, I posted the ebay challenge, to have average monthly sales of $100. I got off to a strong start as you can see on my sidebar. Then I just dropped off to nothing.
So now I'm determined to get back on track. We leave for vacation on Friday and when I get back, I'm getting back to business. I just figured out that I need to earn $625.27 by the end of the year to have my monthly average be $100. I've got 4 months so that's $156.32/month. That's a challenge, for sure, but I'll do my best. Before, I was usually listing 5 items per week. I'll have to do more than that to reach my goal.
Edited to correct "5 items per month" to "5 items per week".
Today is a beautiful spring day, the first we've really had this year. I spent a couple of hours attacking the disaster area we call our garage. I managed to make some progress, get rid of some trash, put some stuff in the recycling bin and condense some of what remains. I also made a trip to the Goodwill donation center with 3 boxes containing 3 sets of dishes, 1 box of children's books and 1 old computer monitor. That cleared some space in the garage.
I also located a number of items that I will list on ebay, hopefully starting tomorrow. So my decluttering may yield some cash, too, and help my ebay challenge numbers. We'll see.
I finally got back to ebay this week. I had 4 items ready to list (photographed, descriptions written) but when I did a quick search, I discovered that 2 of the 4 weren't worth listing. They don't sell well or bring enough to be worth trying. I did list the other 2 items. As of right now, both have bids ($9.99 and $7.99) so I will be adding a minimum of $17.98 to my April total. I will be out tonight and tomorrow night so the soonest I can list anything else is Saturday or Sunday. I'll probably try and prep a few things on Saturday and list on Sunday. I probably won't hit the $100 goal this month unless I can dig up some good stuff to sell next week or I get some more half.com sales.
I haven't posted an update recently mainly because I had nothing to say. I haven't listed on ebay for 2 weeks so I've gotten off-track with my challenge.
Fortunately, half.com, which had been dead for a couple of months, picked back up. I've sold 2 books this week. One for $4.25 and one for $29.99.
That gives me $34.24 for April.
I do have a few items ready to be listed on ebay and just haven't done it yet. Perhaps I'll actually get them on this weekend.