Everyone has had items in their room that they no longer wear, use, or find entertaining anymore. Maybe the item wasn't ever used in the first place. There is always the option of throwing away the unused goods, but as college students, there is always the option of selling it online.
Be it textbooks, clothes, or games, everything has some sort of worth to give you a slight increase in income for the month. Websites like eBay and Craigslist allow for sales to take place over the Internet, but there are some doubts to just how safe they can be.
Selling things online is scary. However, there are some places that offer you to post items for local areas. While you still have to meet in person, you do not have to give out/receive addresses to mail if a location is too far, and the best part about selling locally is there are local places you can visit like a Starbucks, Walmart, or even small-town stores.
The places you would visit to complete transactions are close and familiar enough to both buyer and seller that they would both feel comfortable in the location.
One of the main places to sell locally is on Facebook Local Garage Sale Groups. You can type in the name of your town with "garage sale" and most likely you will receive several groups dedicated to safe and local buying and selling.
The majority of groups have a set of rules and perform checks on an individual's location before they are let in. You are easily able to post things to sell and even contact others if you want to buy something.
While this option may seem difficult, I have to say it is extremely easy. My mother has been using this frequently and has sold multiple things using our town's garage sale Facebook group. Both buyer and seller agree on where to meet, and the transaction happens in person.
This is by far one of the easiest options, but there is no guarantee that your options would be close enough for comfort for you.
Along with Facebook, there are several apps that also offer ways to sell and buy locally. VarageSale and OfferUp are just a few of the apps that you can easily download to sell locally. The apps use your current location, or you type in your zip code, and it connects you to "your area."
You can see items listed for sale in your area as well as add items to sell. These apps are simple to use and still maintain all of the benefits of local buying and selling. Its also fun to just scroll through the apps and see what is for sale, and see what good deals are available.
It's also great because you will see the names of the people who you plan to meet, and therefore won't be meeting anonymous strangers.
Even with buying and selling locally, it isn't always "danger-free". It's important to keep some things in mind before you set up to meet someone, even if you are both familiar with the location.
1. Before meeting with someone to buy, be sure to ask a lot of questions about the product to be sure they actually know what they are talking about.
2. Be skeptical of deals that seem to be too good to be true. Chances are, they are. It could be a scam or someone trying to cause harm.
3. Always let someone know where you are going to meet someone and who you are going to meet.
4. Do not share your personal address or sensitive information with anyone.
5. Complete transactions in public places - never in someone's home.
6. Always meet during the day.
7. If possible, bring someone with you to the meeting.
8. Trust your gut- if something doesn't feel right, you have the right to cancel the meeting.
Selling and buying locally online is an easy way to make extra cash if you are willing to take the steps necessary to protect yourself in the process. If you want to buy or sell online, you might as well do it in the safest way possible.