Sunday, December 13, 2009

It's the Holiday Season - let the bidding begin !


As you accumulate inventory it's always a good idea to hold back some stuff to sell during the Christmas season. In my case there are certain items that I will stockpile and sell during the Holidays in the hopes of increasing my return. Even items that you can't give away during the year seem to attract buyers during the holiday shopping season. Some of the items I like to stockpile are: Dept. 56 Christmas Village pieces, Thomas the Tank Engine cars, clothes that still have their tags attached (because you can't give a used shirt as a gift-right?) dolls in the original packaging and trains sets.

As an example, every year I always seem to find a Target Store/Lionel train set in the Goodwill store. This is because Target will dump their unsold Christmas merchandise on Goodwill, including their yearly Lionel Train set model. Recently, I found last year's set at Goodwill for $25 and sold it for $75 on Craigslist. I probably could have sold it for a little more, maybe even a $100 if I was patient. But I would rather have a bird in the hand as they say.

But one of the best returns I had this holiday season was the Lego Harry Potter set seen here. Amazingly, I found this 2001 set complete and unassembled. As background, this past Spring I purchased the identical set for only two bucks and quickly sold it on Ebay for $165. Thus began my "awakening" to the Harry Potter Lego set market. I followed that up with a smaller Potter Lego set in it's original box that I bought for only fifty cents. I turned around and sold this much smaller set for $41...a great return on my two quarters! (As an aside, the Star Wars Lego sets are red hot as well.)

Having quickly learned about the Potter Lego market, I eyed the set seen here in a driveway of a very pricey home. I nearly had to wrestle it from a Middle School age kid who was also looking at it. (Hey, I am not above pulling a power play on some dumb kid-he'd have the set busted up and lost in a week's time!) After diverting the kid's attention to a Lego soccer set (not worth much on Ebay) I took possession of this rare set for a whopping five dollars. I couldn't believe my luck at finding a set in this condition, intact and unassembled! I decided to maximize my return and patiently hold it until the Christmas season.

The set went up on Ebay in the beginning of December for a ten day auction. My hope was that over ten days many a mom would find it, causing a bidding war to ensue. Most Mom's will do anything for their kids when it comes to Christmas presents, including try to outbid each other for their little Potter fan. Just as I had hoped, a bidding war did take place with my set. The auction turned out to be truly magical. My five dollar investment made a steady climb all week, topping out at $227! Comfort and Joy! Woo-Hoo!

The Christmas shopping season can really put your Ebay auctions into the stratosphere! So keep an eye out and have the foresight to store those special items away until Christmas-You'll be rewarded for your patience !!!
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