If you missed it, on February 1 – THREE weeks ago, I launched Project Downsize with the purpose to get rid of as much stuff as possible in my home – to remove clutter, to simplify our lives.
I’m doing this for two reasons:
- We have plans to move this summer and instead of upgrading to a bigger, better house, we plan to dramatically reduce our square footage. We aren’t being forced to do this – it’s a choice. We want to spend less on our next “home” so that we can focus more on things we love and value – like travel.
- I want to own my stuff and not have it own me. Ultimately I only want to keep the items that a.) serve a purpose and b.) that bring me joy.
I set a very LOFTY February goal is to earn $2,000 in February selling items in my home on Amazon, eBay and Craigslist. After the first two weeks I had earned $1831.63 from selling items from around my house.
Week 3 was a bit slower. My daughter ended up fracturing her wrist (lots of doc appointments), my husband had teacher/parent conferences at schools keeping him at work until late a couple nights this week and it was just a hectic week for us as a family. Family first – so my downsizing efforts slowed down considerably.
HOWEVER, I still managed to move some items!!
PROGRESS THIS WEEK:
- Listed about 20 items for sale in Facebook group
- SOLD 13 items in Facebook group earning $375
- Still had books for sale on Amazon
- SOLD four books on Amazon, earning $57.40
TOTAL earned this week by downsizing = $432.40
TOTAL so far this month = $2,264.03
WAHOOOO! I reached my goal and I still have another week to sell items. Having the goal has been such a motivator to sell items each week. I wonder if I can reach $3,000 by Sunday – that would mean selling another $753.97 worth of items.
MY THOUGHTS ABOUT THIS WEEK:
1.) Set up separate bank account for money from sales – Do you need to build an emergency fund? Are you wanting to save for a trip to Disneyland? Do you need to replace an aging vehicle? If it makes sense for you – create a separate bank account, so the earnings from your downsizing can go toward a specific goal. Then you can say – selling all that EXTRA stuff in my house resulting in THIS instead of having it absorbed into general household expenses – I think you’ll find it more rewarding.
2.) Keep a database/record of what you sell – I set up a simple spreadsheet to keep track of our downsizing efforts. It’s been really helpful to go back and see what I sold – and for how much. It also shows me items I need to list or that are currently listed, waiting to be sold. If you’re doing a MAJOR downsize – I think this helps things stay organized.
3.) Don’t be afraid to price it more than you paid for it. This one is a bit tricky – but important. I think as frugal people – we have a certain price point in our minds of what we would pay for items – so we end up only getting amazing deals. We are EXPERTS at finding rock-bottom prices. We often buy items for much less than market value thanks to clearance, secondhand sales or amazing online sales. For example, say you purchased a Vitamix for $30 at a garage sale. It’s valued at $350. If you didn’t use it and decided to sell it – you could probably easily price it at $75 or $100. It’s still a fair, bargain price for the person you’re selling it to. There is nothing wrong with selling something for more than you purchased it for. Consider it a finder’s fee. As long as you are asking a fair price when you sell it – you shouldn’t feel bad about your amazing ability to pay less for things, right?
4.) Help the kids sell extra toys or clothes. This will be a focus for me this week. My kid’s toys and bedrooms could use a good thinning. I hope to use this as a learning opportunity for them – we’ll photograph their items, sell them in the Facebook group and any money they earn can be used during our travel adventures we’re planning this summer. I could easily pocket the cash – I bought the toys/clothes they’re selling, but I think it’s helpful for kids to see that they can take material items, and consciously “trade” those items for experiences – or whatever might be important to you and your family. My kids are 100% on board – and we’re talking items they are emotionally attached to – we’re talking board games they haven’t played in ages or clothes they’ve outgrown. 🙂
5.) It’s still hard to emotionally part with items. Even though I’m already three weeks into this downsize – and I clearly see and EXPERIENCE the positive side effects of less clutter and stuff – I’m still pushing myself to get rid of items that I feel attached to. For example, I sold some of my favorite signs this week – but I’m reminding myself it’s just stuff. I’m finding the items I’m KEEPING have more value than before, they get more noticed, they serve more of a purpose and give me more joy – because they are more visible and I’m not bombarded by distractions of too much stuff. Make sense?
SOME OF THE ITEMS I SOLD:
To give you an idea of the things I’m selling and how much I’m earning from each item, I thought I’d share a few of the items I sold this week. I am not listing everything – it would bore you, I’m sure.
Pampered Chef Entertaining sets – $25
Fancy mason jar lids, ceramic fruit baskets, striped straws – $20
Canning jars and some supplies – $35
Family Rules canvas print – $20
Happiness is not a destination sign – $30
Be Truthful sign – $15
Pampered Chef Bamboo lot – 45
Scrapbook paper and storage container – $20
School supplies stock pile – $50
Scrapbooking supplies – $20
So those are a few of the items I sold this week. If you’re on the fence about decluttering – let me encourage you – it feels great!
Earlier this month I shared this tutorial on How to Sell Used Books on Amazon – I need to go back into my Amazon listings and adjust my prices so that I can sell more books this next week.
One more week – I have big hopes for getting garage really cleaned out this week. Check back next Sunday for another update!!
And this downsize project won’t stop at the end of this month. I have big plans for March. . .so stay tuned for that announcement sometime in early March.
If you’re joining me for Project Downsize – I’d love to hear what you got rid of this week! Pick a goal for this week and share it here, please!