Did my catchy, click-bait title make you intrigued to find out what the secret recipe is to get rich quick?
Well, there's good news and bad news. The good? I'm not lying. You truly can make a million dollars selling second-hand items to collectors and hoarders all across the globe. The bad? It's not going to happen overnight, and more importantly, it ain't that easy.
A bit of a background on me. I've been buying and reselling people's stuff since I was 12 years old. In the heart of the suburbs of Los Angeles, California, is my families antique shop where I honed my craft to what it is today. What that knowledge has turned into, is a perplexing opportunity that has turned into a worldwide phenomenon that is the hit TV reality series Storage Hunters, to now a brand new series coming to Quest called British Treasure American Gold.
Let the tips begin:
1. Only buy what you like: When starting out in resale, there is no better way to get started buying and selling then purchasing things you like. When I first started out on eBay at 13, I sold one thing. Nintendo video games. I would purchase them in lots at car boots and garage sales, play them for a bit, then sell them online for a bit of a profit. At the end of the day, if my sales ran dry, or I was tiring of doing my new found business, I would be stuck with all my left over inventory. A 13-year old teenage boy, with a box of sweet, sweet video games. See what I mean? Don't get stuck buying things you don't like, or don't have the means to sell. You will get burnt out quickly, and more importantly, you won't enjoy the whole experience.
2. Find your niche: Trends come and go. Every Christmas, some hot item comes on the shelves for people to buy in mass, and there is always some serial entrepreneur who tries to jump on the bandwagon to make a quick buck. Don't be that guy. Instead, pay attention to the trends, but find the niche in that market that no one has taken advantage yet. Filming British Treasure American Gold, I found a brand new niche along the way. Vinyl records are becoming hot again all over the world. But who in Los Angeles, has a U.K. first pressing of The Beatles Let it Be, or Led Zeppelin's Houses of the Holy? It's really not rocket science. All I identified was a niche in a particular market and offered something different that current buyers haven't seen before. Not only do I not have any competition (at the moment, at least), but I can also set my own price points for a tidy profit.
3. Take advantage of peoples' laziness: This really is a simple one. Work hard. The very nature of resale is that people are looking to get rid of their stuff to get some money back. Wake up early and be the first one to the car boots and auctions. Be willing to get dirty and dig around to find that potential gem that can make you a small but decent profit to use towards that next big item. Most importantly, DON'T GIVE UP! I will tell you right now, you will not make money every time. You will buy things that don't make the profit you thought, but don't let that stray you from learning and growing. If you can't make money, at the very least, learn from your mistakes, and work even harder next time!
4. Wash, rinse, repeat. (but you can't repeat forever): The first thing I ever resold was Nintendo games. I took that profit, and bought even more games. From there, I bought my first full-size arcade. From there, I traded it for 3 more. Two years later, I had 34 arcades in 4 public locations in Southern California making me over $1,000 a month. Once again, not a secret formula. I just recognized a niche in a particular market, reinvested my profits, and took a calculated gamble. I turned a copy of Super Mario Bros. 3 into a full-fledged small business. But like your favorite pair of superman underwear, trends, fads, and customers will wear out. Always be prepared for the next big thing!
A few basic pieces of advice, but that should be enough to get your foot in the door and starting the adventure of resale... if you dare.
Good luck on your future of becoming the next resale millionaire!
Either way, check out my brand new show, British Treasure American Gold coming to Quest, Wednesday, October 19th at 8:00pm. It's going to be awesome, dudes!