While we must always remain hopeful that we’ll someday find that proverbial pot of gold at a storage unit auction, we must also come to terms with the fact that there will be a lot of common, everyday junk in the storage units that we buy. This junk, however, will most likely be the bulk of what you sell, so it’s best to get used to it and learn how to profit off of it.
Here are few of the most common things you’ll find in a storage unit, and how to get rid of them:
Clothing can be tricky to sell, and many people don’t even like to bother with it. Don’t be lazy! Even if you have to pick through 5 garbage bags filled with clothing, it could be worth it. Check for high quality brand names that can be sold on eBay. Also keep an eye out for vintage pieces which can be sold to consignment shops or to vintage thrifters on websites such as Etsy. People want to look like a million bucks without paying the hefty price tag, so this is where you come in!
Since many people use self-storage to store the things they won’t be using immediately, you will probably find a lot of Christmas ornaments and assorted holiday tchotchkes in the storage units you buy. Even if you've found a Christmas treasure trove in the middle of July, hold onto them! Come autumn, people will start gearing up for the holidays and looking for cheap and cheerful ways to decorate. Bring these items with you to flea markets, sell them at tag sales, and if they’re vintage, definitely sell some on Etsy. Can you all tell I love Etsy? Don't underestimate it--it can be indispensable when selling vintage goodies!
Furniture can be tricky, especially if you’re still a beginner without proper transportation (i.e. a moving truck). So before you even make a bid, you need to determine whether or not you’ll be able to move the furniture in the unit, and if it’s even worth it. Furniture is frequently sold on Craigslist, and a great time to sell it is right before the school year starts and college kids are looking for cheap and easy furnishings. Antique furniture is better suited for consignment at antique shops or auction houses. Always consider how you can profit before you commit to buying anything.
This is one furnishing that is very commonly stored, and a very good idea to stay away from. Not only are mattresses huge and quite challenging to transport, did you know that it’s actually illegal in many states to sell a used mattress? Unless you have the means to steam clean it and you know somebody who is willing to even buy a used mattress, it’s a good idea to stay away from units with mattresses, unless the rest of the unit looks very promising. Transporting and disposing of a mattress can be very costly.
Since most people who rent storage units are average, everyday people, you’re most likely going to find average, everyday items. This does not mean you won’t make a profit! If you learn how and where to sell these items, they might just end up being your bread and butter.