The secret to running successful buy-sell storage auction business is to fetch as much money for your goods as possible. This should come as little-to-no surprise to seasoned storage auction hunters, most of whom are well aware of the importance of pricing. You want to obtain abandoned self-storage units for the lowest price possible, while turning around and selling its contents for the highest possible price. So, how can you fetch top dollar for your goods?
Rather than trying to sell your goods immediately after you’ve acquired them at auction, you should wait to “polish them up.” This means fixing any items that are broken or malfunctioning, as well as cleaning them so they are more attractive to prospective buyers. Conventional wisdom should lead you to believe that consumers will pay more for an item that’s clean and “polished” as opposed to one that’s dirty.
If you come across a piece of old furniture, for instance, wipe it down with some furniture polish and a lint-free microfiber cloth to remove any dust. Old dressers, chest of drawers, nightstands, tables and other pieces of furniture will gather dust after sitting in a storage unit for months or even years on end. While dust shouldn’t cause any lasting damage, it can hurt the furniture’s visual appeal, at which point potential buyers may offer you less money for it. Cleaning it up, however, should only take a couple of minutes, but it can increase the item’s selling value substantially.
You don’t have to necessarily spend an entire day cleaning up your items, but you should make it a point to go over them quickly, removing any caked-on dust, dirt and debris. It’s a simple way to drastically increase the selling value of items you acquire at auction (or elsewhere for that matter).
But not all items should be cleaned and polished before reselling. Many antique and vintage items will fetch a higher price if you leave them in their original condition. This is particularly true in the case of rare collectables, which typically sell for more when they are left in their original state — even if that state is somewhat worn and decayed. If an item you acquire at storage auction is an antique/vintage collectable, it’s usually best to keep in its original state. You’ll likely find that buyers are willing to pay more for original items such as this.