This post may contain affiliate links. Please read how we make money for more information.
Many people start side hustles as a way to earn extra money, and one of the most popular (and potentially lucrative) is flipping used items on eBay and other sites.
It isn’t hard to see why flipping is so popular. It’s never been easier to find and buy undervalued items. Thanks to modern technology (the internet and smartphone apps), tracking down items for sale in your community that can be resold on eBay or another online platform for profit is now very easy.
This is an opportunity you can do in your spare time outside of your regular job. It’s also a great side hustle for many because it requires very little skill. It’s completely recession-proof, too. Used items are always popular, during good economic times and bad.
This is also a great side hustle for many because it doesn’t take long to start earning money. After putting in just a few hours of sourcing work, you could start seeing your first sales (and profits) in just a few short days.
Finally, flipping used items for cash is something you can start doing on a part-time basis and then grow into a full-time income (if you want). Many people have done it, and if you put in the time and effort, you may be able to do the same.
Before we get into the best items to flip for cash, let’s take a look at how one couple turned their flipping side hustle into a six-figure business.
Rob and Melissa Stephenson’s Story
Rob Stephenson started flipping things as a way to make his monthly car payment and continued flipping items on the side for extra cash after marrying Melissa. He earned about $30k flipping one year working part-time hours.
After having their third child, Rob and Melissa decided to go all-in and become full-time flippers. Their first year of flipping full-time they earned $133,000!
Rob and Melissa typically spend about 20-25 hours a week on their business. This includes a few hours sourcing products, and about 15 hours of cleaning and fixing items and listing them for sale.
In addition to continuing to flip items (it’s their full-time business), they now teach others how to flip things for profit in their Flipper University course. Flipper University teaches you everything you need to know to get started in the flipping business. It covers product sourcing, listing items for sale, shipping products, and other things you need to know to be successful.
What Are the Easiest Things to Flip for Profit?
Let’s go ahead now and take a look at the easiest items to flip for profit. These are things you should be able to find locally unless you live in a very rural area.
In general, you want to source products that have one of three characteristics (or two or more if possible). You want to find things that are rare, things that are large, or things that are damaged and need to be fixed.
There is often a big demand for things that are rare. Rare doesn’t necessarily have to mean something that is old. Many antiques are rare, for example, but if the demand for the product isn’t there, it won’t be worth your time to try to flip it.
A rare item could be a record from a popular band that is hard to find or a book that is no longer in print. For example, the book “Sled Driver: Flying the World’s Fastest Jet” often goes for hundreds of dollars on eBay.
Large items can be good to flip because many don’t want to have to deal with the hassle of moving them. That’s why so many are willing to sell large items for so little – or even free in some cases. To move large items, you will need to have a truck and the ability to lift heavy or bulky items.
And finally, things that are damaged and need to be fixed are also great to flip if you can to fix things. Many people often give these things away because they don’t know what else to do with them.
In some cases, you may not even have to fix an item. You may be able to sell it on eBay in its current condition by listing it as “nonworking – for parts only.” It just depends on the item you are selling and the demand.
To give you a good idea of the best things to buy and resell for profit, here is a list of 25 things you may be able to find in your neighborhood:
1. Antiques and Retro Items
Antiques of all kinds are often in demand. People love to collect old furniture, home accessories, lamps, and other things. Many people like to decorate their homes with these things. Antiques also make great conversation pieces. The older they are, the better.
Many things fall under the category of “retro.” Old signs, sports memorabilia, vehicle license plates, toys, and similar items are highly collectible, and there’s a huge market for them.
As with all things you buy to flip, the key to making money is being able to buy these items for as little money as possible. There are a lot of savvy sellers out there, and many of them will try to charge you top dollar for the items you are trying to buy.
Before you buy any antiques or retro items (or any items for that matter) to resell, be sure you do your homework first. Take the time to research the item on eBay and other online auction sites to see what it is selling for. Don’t make an offer unless you are confident that you can resell the item for a profit.
2. Wood Furniture
If you’ve been to a furniture store lately, you’ve probably discovered that a lot of the items being sold aren’t made from real wood. Many pieces are actually made from particleboard or pressboard. This is an imitation wood product that has been created by mixing a slurry of wood pulp or sawdust with glue and then pressing it into the shape of wooden boards.
This is why there is a very strong market for used wood furniture – pieces made from real wood.
If you can source authentic wood furniture pieces in your neighborhood for a good price, you may be able to earn a profit by flipping them. Condition is important, of course. Some pieces you will be able to flip as-is, while others may need to be refinished.
Refinishing and flipping used wood furniture is great for those with a lot of spare time, like those who are retired. The work is fulfilling and the profit potential is definitely there if you can strike a good deal with sellers.
3. Power Tools
New power tools are often expensive. Because of this, many look for used tools to save money.
Why do so many sell used power tools in great condition for low prices?
Sometimes people sell used power tools after taking up a hobby (woodworking, cabinetmaking, etc.). They then give up on the hobby when they either realize they don’t have enough spare time or they don’t have the necessary skills to complete projects. To clear up the clutter in their basements or garages, they then try to sell those tools at a discount to get rid of them.
You may be able to find some great deals on power tools by searching Craigslist, OfferUp, and other online listings. Be sure that any power tools you are considering actually work before buying them.
There is a huge market for used appliances – washing machines, dryers, stoves, etc. These items are very expensive new, and many don’t have the money to buy a new washing machine, for example, when their old one suddenly goes out.
Some flippers make appliances their primary focus. Many of these machines are surprisingly easy to repair, and the parts are often very affordable. If you can teach yourself how to repair them (check YouTube for instructional videos), and you have a truck, you may be able to create a used appliance business that you can run out of your garage.
You may have to buy a few used appliances when you first get started, but it’s possible to obtain a steady stream of used appliances for free. When you drop off appliances to their new owners, for example, just ask them if they would like you to haul off the old ones. Many will say yes to this offer. You then have free appliances to repair and resell.
5. Record Players
Vinyl is back!
Did you know that records now are as popular as CDs? It may be hard for some to believe considering the convenience of CDs and digital music players, but many prefer the warm sound of records as opposed to the digital perfection of modern music technology.
Due to the strong demand for vinyl records these days, there is also a strong demand for used record players. If you can find units that are in good working condition for a good price, you may be able to sell them for a profit.
The only negative to selling record players is when you pack and ship them. Record players are delicate, and you want to be very careful when packing them to make sure they are well-protected against the inevitable bumps that happen during delivery.
There is a strong secondary market for name-brand bicycles. I’m not talking about the inexpensive bikes you can get from your local big-box store. I’m referring to the bikes that are sold at bicycle shops. Some of these bikes sell for thousands of dollars brand new.
There’s also a strong market for antique and collectible bicycles. Many people have these bikes in their garages, basements, barns, and other places and don’t realize they have something of value. To them, it’s just an old bike that’s taking up space.
People list used bicycles for sale all the time. If you do your homework, you may be able to identify bikes that are worth buying and reselling. Some bikes will need repairs, and it helps if you can fix-up bikes that need some TLC before you flip them for profit.
Just as records and record players have made a comeback in recent years, so have jukeboxes. There aren’t as many jukeboxes on the market as record players, but if you can find one of these vintage entertainment systems in good working order and for a good price, you may be able to flip it for profit.
Be careful when flipping jukeboxes because they are big and heavy. Be sure you have plenty of help when lifting anything heavy to make sure you don’t hurt yourself and so you don’t damage the product. You’ll also need a truck to transport jukeboxes. They are usually too big and bulky to fit in cars.
Because of their size, jukeboxes are best suited as a local flip. It’s still possible to ship large items by freight truck, and Flipper University teaches you how to ship large items with this shipping method.
8. Baby Strollers
When many people have babies, they often purchase a lot of new baby stuff. People also receive a lot of new baby stuff as gifts. But babies grow fast, and a lot of these slightly used items can be purchased at a discount in great condition and then flipped for a profit.
Baby strollers are one of the best items to flip on eBay or another platform because they are expensive when new, and you may be able to pick them up for a fraction of their new price. Other baby products can be flipped too including baby monitors, cribs, toys, and other items.
9. Lego Sets
Lego is one of the hottest toy brands on the market. Kids can’t get enough of the multicolored building blocks and all of the neat things they can build with them. Lego is popular because it’s fun!
Because of their popularity, the market for used Lego sets is very strong. This is especially true for vintage, rare, and collectible Lego sets.
Many people also buy Lego sets for their kids and then list them for sale for much less than they are worth when their kids outgrow them or become addicted to smartphones, video games, and other technological distractions. Because of this, you may be able to find Lego sets that people are willing to part with for very little and then flip them for profit.
10. Sports Memorabilia
People love sports. Because of the popularity of sports and the devotion many have to their favorite teams, sports memorabilia tends to sell very well. As with all products that you buy used and flip for profit, being able to find memorabilia that is in good condition and for a good price is the key to earning a profit.
Age is another factor to consider when buying sports memorabilia. Antique memorabilia is often more valuable than new items. Before purchasing any sports memorabilia, it’s important to understand the market and the retail value of used items in this niche.
This is a category that requires specialized knowledge to make sure you only buy items that are valuable and to help you avoid the ones that the market doesn’t want or value. Because of this, you’ll need to do your homework and study the market carefully before investing in these products.
11. Utility Trailers
Utility trailers are great items to flip because there are usually many to choose from on the market. People need utility trailers for many different reasons. They need flat-bed trailers and enclosed trailers. Because the demand for quality used trailers is so strong, these are items that tend to sell quickly.
Utility trailers are very easy to fix up. You may be able to find a great deal, for example, on a trailer that needs a little TLC. But with some paint, new tires, and some other easy repairs, you may be able to make it more appealing to potential buyers, thus increasing your chances of flipping it for a profit.
12. Old Video Game Systems and Games
Many people like to collect old video game systems and games. They are often nostalgic about these game systems because they played them when they were kids. They remind people of their childhoods.
Just a few old video game systems include:
- Atari 2600
- Nintendo NES
- Sega Genesis
- Coleco Vision
- Coleco Telstar
- Game Boy
- Magnavox Odyssey
- Mattel Intellivision
As with all electronics, be sure a game system or game works before you buy it. It may also be possible to sell a non-working system for parts if you can get a good price on it.
13. Cameras and Camera Equipment
Photography is one of the most popular hobbies there is. Many people go “all in” when starting this hobby and buy expensive cameras and other equipment – and then completely give up on their hobby when work, kids, and other responsibilities get in the way.
After sitting in a closet for a few months or years, many decide to sell their photography equipment at a loss to get rid of it.
In addition to flipping cameras, money can also be made on photography accessories. Just a few things you may be able to flip (if you get a good deal) include:
- Protective cases
- Studio lighting equipment
With cameras, brand and condition are very important. Some brands, in fact, are worth a lot of money. Some Hasselblad cameras, for example, sell for thousands of dollars.
14. Vintage and Collectible Toys
The vintage and collectible toy market is huge. If you’ve ever watched the popular TV show, American Pickers, you’ve probably seen them buying old toys to resell for hundreds of dollars each.
Vintage and collectible toys can be found everywhere. They can be found online, at auctions, on Craigslist and many other places. Many people have old collectible toys in their homes or in storage and they don’t even realize they are worth anything.
The vintage and collectible toys market is very similar to the sports memorabilia market. You need to do your homework and learn the market before bidding on any merchandise. You don’t want to make the mistake of spending a lot of money buying an old toy when there isn’t any demand for it or it’s worth much less than you spent to buy it.
15. Brand Name Clothing
Used brand name clothing tends to sell very well. It depends on the brand and condition.
Clothing is expensive, and most consider items from name brands to be high-quality. People sell their like-new clothes all the time after they’ve gained or lost weight. If you are a savvy shopper, you may be able to find name brand clothing in excellent condition for very little money.
Yard sales and garage sells are great places to find used name brand clothing. Items may also be listed in the online marketplaces (Facebook Marketplace, OfferUp, Craigslist, etc.). In some cases, you may be able to find name brand clothing with the tags still attached.
When buying used clothing, always do a thorough inspection of each item to make sure there are no rips, stains, alterations, damaged zippers, missing buttons, or anything else that would make reselling it difficult.
16. Free Things
Some of the best things to flip for cash are things you get for free.
Finding free items to flip is not as hard as you might think. Craigslist, for example, has a section where people can list things they are giving away. You could browse it daily to see if you can find anything worth picking up to sell. One person’s trash is someone else’s treasure.
Another way to find free things is to drive through different neighborhoods and look for items that people have set beside the road for the trash truck to pick up. Just because someone considers these items to be trash doesn’t mean they don’t have any value. They might be worth something to someone.
If you do decide to pick up something that someone has set out for the trash truck, be sure to ask permission from the homeowner before taking it to make sure it was being discarded and was not sitting beside the road for another reason. It’s always best to err on the side of caution.
17. Outdoor Furniture
Outdoor furniture can be great to flip if it’s still in good condition and you can get it for a good price. After a few years of being out in the weather, outdoor furniture can end up looking rough. Many wood pieces, however, can be brought back to life with a little TLC. A little bit of paint often does wonders.
In some cases, you may find outdoor furniture that just needs to be cleaned. With a little bit of elbow grease, you can have these pieces looking great again and ready for their new homes.
18. Collectible Board Games
Collectible board games are a thing. Who knew?
If you happen upon a vintage board game like Fortune, The Elvis Presley Game, Haunted House, or something else, it may be worth your time to look them up to see what they are worth. Some of these old games go for hundreds of dollars each!
It’s always worth checking out an old board game that you’ve never heard of, but don’t dismiss a board game just because it’s newer. Sometimes a newer game can sell for a lot if it’s a rare edition or if it’s no longer being made.
19. Things People Discard When They Move
Here’s a strategy you can use to get many things either for free or for deeply discounted prices that you can flip for profit.
When people move, they often use it as an opportunity to get rid of their clutter – things around the house they are no longer using. Many people end up giving these items away, while others sell them for very little to get rid of them in a hurry.
People who are moving usually want to get rid of their clutter as quickly as possible, and you can take advantage of this to score some items you can flip for quick cash.
It’s very simple to find these deals. Just go to Craigslist, OfferUp, Facebook Marketplace, or another online classifieds site and do a search for “moving.” This will often turn up many great deals.
Be sure to check back often since new movers will be listing their items. You don’t want to let others beat you to all of the good stuff!
20. ATVs, Dirt Bikes, Snowmobiles, Jet Skis
These recreational vehicles often make great flips because there are usually many of them listed for sale. Many people buy these things new, ride them for a while, and then forget about them when the next shiny object comes along to distract them.
The great thing about these vehicles is you usually don’t have to deal with titles and paperwork. You may be able to find a good deal on these items when they are out of season. For example, try shopping for snowmobiles when it’s warm outside and jet skis during the winter season.
21. Vintage Clothing
Many vintage clothing items can command premium prices on the used market. Brand and condition are two important considerations. No one wants to buy a shirt, for example, if it’s stained, threadbare, or has an odd odor.
Many vintage clothing items can be found at thrift stores and yard sales. To get an idea of what’s selling, you can study listings for vintage clothing on eBay and other online classifieds sites.
22. Vintage Electronics
Vintage record players aren’t the only electronics items that you can flip for cash. You may also want to consider vintage stereo components, ham radio equipment, and other electronics. And if you find something that isn’t in working order, that doesn’t mean it can’t be sold. In some cases, you may be able to sell nonworking electronics items “for parts only.”
Not all vintage electronics items are going to be worth pursuing, of course. Just because something is old, that doesn’t necessarily mean there is demand for it. Like other things on this list, it’s a good idea to study the market before attempting to buy and sell vintage electronics.
23. Vintage Records
Records and record players are back in a big way, and vintage and collectible records are items you may be able to flip – if you can find some good deals on them.
Many are now aware that the old records they’ve had stored in their closets for decades may be worth something. Because of this, it’s becoming increasingly more difficult to find good deals on vintage records.
This doesn’t mean good deals don’t exist, of course. You can still find some vinyl treasure at many yard sales, garage sales, auctions, thrift stores, and other places if you know what to look for.
24. Concert T-Shirts
Most bands put out a new t-shirt every time they go on tour with a new album. These t-shirts are another way they make money. After the tour is over, the t-shirts are usually discontinued.
Many people collect concert t-shirts. Some fans are fanatical about the bands they love and will pay a premium to own the t-shirt from a certain tour. If you happen to find any concert t-shirts while browsing thrift stores, yard sales, and other places, be sure to check the going prices to see if you can flip them for a profit.
25. Exercise Equipment
Like people who start hobbies they later give up on, many also start exercising to lose weight and get in shape and later give up on it when life gets in the way. And the exercise equipment they bought ends up being used as a clothes hanger or stored away in a closet, basement, or garage.
If you can find someone who has given up on exercising and the equipment they bought, you may be able to buy their equipment from them for very little. In many cases, you’ll be doing people a favor by helping them free up space. You can then flip this equipment for a profit.
Best Items to Flip for Cash – Final Thoughts
There are many items you can find either well below their current market prices or for free in some cases that you can flip for profit. Depending on your goals, you can flip items for profit either for some extra income or as a full-time business.
If you would like to learn more about flipping as a side hustle or as a potential career, Flipper University has all of the information you’ll need to get started, make your first flip, and grow your flipping efforts into a legitimate business.
Searching for items to flip is a lot like searching for hidden treasure. It isn’t just about making money – it can be a lot of fun! This is a business that the whole family can be part of, too. You could even turn it into a game to see who can find the best items to flip when shopping.
We live in an age of economic uncertainty. There is no such thing as company loyalty anymore. If it serves their purposes, companies will not hesitate to lay off employees.
As a flipper, you will be in control of your life, a business owner. And when the next recession hits, you’ll be able to continue in your business while others are concerned about losing their jobs. The peace of mind you’ll have from being able to continue providing for yourself and your family is something no one can put a price tag on.