Scavenger Life Episode 261: Yearly Update from Mikey & Wendy of iTunes   YouTube   Download .mp3  Download .ogg

This week we're doing our yearly update with Mikey and Wendy. They were our inspiration to moving out to a rural community and finding ways to live outside the normal 9-5. We, in turn, turned them onto scavenging and eBay as a way to earn income.

They helped us start this podcast and you hear them on many of the early episodes. You can listen to our previous conversations with them over the past several years.

Mikey and Wendy still live in rural New Mexico, still sell on eBay, and have gotten involved in many new projects (like running regular ultra marathons). The process of evolving is the most fun part of this lifestyle. You can follow along with their adventures on their blog, The Good Life Lab.

Hope your week went well. Enjoy!


  1. Mikey and Wendy should do Amazon FBA like Resale Rabbit. Mikey is techie enough that they would kill it!! Just my two cents.

  2. The podcast is not up on Itunes yet.. Are we waiting for it to ping? Thanks

  3. If anyone is still having trouble determining their monthly or weekly Amazon sales numbers (with a breakdown of all the fees), here is is the report I generate.

    Reports --> Payments --> Date Range Reports

    Click the button "Generate a report", pick "Summary" and then select the month you want or enter a custom date range (for weekly reports).

    You'll get a PDF summary with your income and expenses breakdown.

    If you want an item by item breakdown of fees, select the transaction report. The transaction report will need to be imported into a spreadsheet program.

    Hope this helps.

    1. Thanks Zach. Maybe it works better in Excel. I know Google Sheets doesn't really like the Amazon reports.

  4. I remember a while ago someone wrote about how to get a prescription for eye glasses filled overseas for significant savings. Does anyone know which episode that was or have the information?

    1. Zenni Optical is probably what you are looking for. They've been around for years. I bought glasses from them real cheap. Clark Howard Loves them.

    2. Yep... Zinni Optical is the one. web site is zinnioptical and the traditional .com aftwards. Thousands of frame style-choices, transitional, bi-focals, Titanium flexible, plain prescription sunglasses and more. You only need one measurement that most eye doctors don't like to give out but some will if you ask otherwise Zinni's web site offers a short tutorial on how to get that measurement yourself.

      My wife and I have bought from them for years. It takes about two weeks to fill your order. What local eye doctors Walmart and other discount places included will charge $250 to $300 for, you can get at Zinni for about $30 to $40 dollars.

      Worried about quality? No problem. Clark Howard did an experiment about 5 years ago. he took his most recent eye prescription and got it filled at 6 different USA eye glass centers. Sears Optical, Pearl Vision, LensCrafters, Vision Works, Walmart and couple of others along with ordering a pair from Zinni. Then he sent all 6 or 7 pairs out to an independent lab for testing of accuracy on the qulaity and accuracy of the lenses. Only two were 100% dead on accurate and Zinni was one of them. The others were between 96% and 98% accurate on grinding the lenses to the proper specifications the prescription / Dr. called for. Come to also find out that some places even sub-contract your lenses out to Zinni and then re-package them in their cases, lens cloths and care instruction sheet then re-sell them to you and add $200 ++ dollars to the bi'll. All of this is also documented on Clark Howards web site in his archives.

      Even if the frames broke or something else in a short period. For $30 you could buy a new pair every 60 days for 20 months and still be ahead.

      Hope this helps and takes the worry out of saving your self about 90% off of glasses. mike in Atlanta

    3. We get all of our glasses from Zenni. Our 13 yr old son has had his glasses destroyed a couple of times(he has 2 younger brothers and a younger sister) and it was under $30 to replace them. We now buy his glasses in lots of 2's. We did get the measurement from the doctors office, but we had to pay a fitting fee because we weren't buying the glasses from them.The glasses arrived in less time than stated on the website as well.

    4. Thanks Mike and Joe! So I just have to get a copy of the prescription from the place that does the exam? Do they have to give that to you? Had this been an issue for you?

    5. The eye doctor will write you a prescription for the Optician to fill (grind down your lenses and make your glasses from]. It usually is then at the Optician's officeor in many cases in the same office area, that they measures the Pupilary [left to right distance], when they start showing you your selection of those $300 frames. It is a simple measurement but they are not so forth coming with it. It is the measurement from the center of your left pupil to the center of your right pupil. That then determines which selection or style of frames they will start showing you. Some frames don't fit everybody's shape face.

      Getting that measurement across your face, eye pupil center to eye pupil center is what Zinni shows you how to do on your own in their short video tutorial, in case your optician doesn't give it to you. And most won't because they know what you are up to. By passing them! My docotor gave me mine without question. I told I was not going to buy my glasses from him, just thanked him for the eye exam.

      Go to the Zinni web sight and it will explain what to expect from your doctor and what you will need to try to get or do yourself. mike in atl.

    6. Oh by the way, there is a measurement for the length of the side arms that go back over your ears and Zinni explains that also. Just as a side note, when you get your Zinni glasses back and you find that they fit a little loose or slide a little forward, I have just walked into any eye glass store and said, "Hey, my glasses are loose, will you adjust them for me plaese?'. never been refused yet. mc in atl.

    7. I agree with everything noted about Zenni. My last eye exam was at Visionworks and they gave me the extra measurement needed for Zenni without any hesitation. I too have walked into local eyeglass stores for adjustments and have always found them happy to help. Zenni has an email list you can subscribe to for discounts.

    8. Thank you everyone for all your help. This is good information to have because even with Insurance, if you get progressive bifocals it is very expensive. Also, you can get a backup pair for cheap also. Thanks again!

  5. If they lived on the east coast I'd totally do a retreat with them. I miss nature and my hubby hates being outdoors. Do you give out your eBay store name? I'd love to follow it.

    Further onto EBay, I watch hundreds of videos and study sold listings but I rarely see or remember what I saw when I'm out thrifting. Do you keep a note book with keywords or brands listed or is there a good app for that that can be sorted easily? My brain is too clogged up with a million other things to recall all of that stuff.

    1. Well, Anonymous, you have a powerful computer in your pocket that puts all of human knowledge at your fingertips. Not sure what else to say. The name of the game is find the cool stuff.

    2. This comment has been removed by the author.

    3. Try the eValuator (aka What's It Worth on eBay) app. It allows you to search sold prices only on eBay. Put in the search term and it gives you the sold listings, as well as average selling price and percentage that actually sold. You can refine the search by new or used and by listed product category. The app is free on IOS and Android. It is probably the most used app on my phone.

    4. Anon, there's a multi-pronged approach. There's watching videos and studying other people's sold items, there's looking things up in-store, there's watching the eBay listings of people who live around you (this can become an avoidance behavior/time waster, but properly managed it will let you see what items other people around you are sourcing and if those items were good buys), there's spending time becoming an expert in categories which are inherently interesting to you (you're much likely to remember brands of shoes that sell well if you're a shoe person, for example), there's training your eye for quality... in short, it's not grocery shopping where you go with a list of items and they're almost guaranteed to be there on the shelf. If your brain isn't wanting to "recall all that stuff," it sounds like you're trying to source items that aren't of inherent interest to you. That's swimming upstream, in my opinion. Start with things that are interesting to you -- things that you don't have to struggle to remember, things that appeal. The more you learn about those things, the more your knowledge and interest will naturally spread to other things, and your store will grow. But don't wear yourself down trying to remember which Littlest Pet Shop figures or Nikes or Insane Clown Posse items are the most valuable. Start with things that interest you, and work from there.

    5. Retro Treasures WVJune 6, 2016 at 2:24 PM

      I sold an ICP knit hat not too long ago internationally. There are Juggalo's all over the world apparently.

      I admit, I got a few chuckles out of their music when I was a teen.

    6. Total items in store: 284
      Total number of sales: 9
      Total sales: $213
      Avg price sold: $24
      Avg cog: $2.10

      This week I was running an experiment where I added a flat rate of $5.99 to all my items instead of my free shipping. This was a fail! I pulled the plug on it Saturday morning and reverted back which gave me 2 sales of the 9 total. It was essentially raising my prices which are competitive ($20-23 for a shirt) by $6. Killed my sales volume and the extra cash on each item didn't make up for it. Here is what I think. When you have a smaller store, you need to price more competitive to obtain higher sales numbers. If you have 1000's of items, you can afford missing some sales to get more out of each sale by pricing high. I believe there are two curves and right where they intersect is where your pricing should be. So as your store grows, you can and should slowly increase your prices. At this point today, I already have $209 in sales and we aren't even at the half way point of the week.

      Helping out with my parents garage sale I was able to open up some old storage boxes containing dozens of Atari, NES, and SNES games! I have been studying deep in to this niche market that I've never sold in. The best part, it has given me an idea to make money on eBay that doesn't involve arbitrage. A supplement to the clothing arbitrage.

      I laughed when I heard ICP mentioned haha. Back when I was young I thought they were cool and also wore JNCO jeans that have super wide leg openings (btw, those jeans go for good money these days).

      Does eValuator cost money for a premium version, does it have ads? Does it go back 3 months? It sounds really great.

    7. When I started I just wrote down things on a small piece of paper and kept it in my pocket. 4 clothing recommendations are: never buy altered clothing, keep in the middle of the bell curve of sizing, avoid red unless it's really special. Turn everything inside out before you buy and check for unseen damage or blood.

    8. Cyndi (amazing*taste)June 7, 2016 at 7:36 AM

      Another great app is the "completely" app for IOS. Shows you average sold prices, and the amount of time they took to sell.

    9. Retro Treasures WVJune 7, 2016 at 8:39 AM

      I disagree with staying in the "bell curve" on sizing. The real money is in the oddball big sizes! I get super hyped whenever I find size 15 or bigger shoes, or 4x clothing. These folks can't just walk into a store and buy things that fit them. I also sell a lot of smaller size stuff too. Size 6 and 6.5 shoes in womens sell pretty regular.

    10. I agree, the big sizes sell for better returns. I am not sure about the extra small or small sizes in men's.

    11. Retro Treasures WVJune 7, 2016 at 3:04 PM

      There are lots of tiny little fellas skinny and 5 foot 4 that need shirts too. I'm just not one of them. Lol. If it is a high quality item, I buy it regardless of size.

    12. Retro Treasures is 100% correct about the shoes. I wear a size 15 and it's just about impossible to find anybody that sells that size. Most stores can't even special order them for me. There is basically one local chain around here called Peltz Shoes that stocks a handful of size 15 mens shoes and that's my only option if I want to buy in a store.

    13. My opinion is only one opinion. I had a brand new pair of LeBron James Basketball shoes size 15 that took almost 2 years to sell at $40. So after that I gave up on those. However I find that mens shoe sizes 9.5-12 sell regularly within 30 days for good prices. Mens size small does horribly for me. Sizes L-2XL. Womens shoe sizes 7 and under are terrible for me. Sizes 8-10 sell fast. Oh well. Whatever works. Have a great week everyone.

      By the way, I had an epiphany moment when I volunteered to sort out used uniforms at a local high school. What I found is 80% of the students were in the size M to XL range and there was a radical dropoff on both ends of the curve both directions. There were 4 or 5 size XS or 3XL in the whole bunch out of around 300 uniforms.

  6. I haven't listed yet but here are my numbers:

    Total Items in Store: 968
    Items Sold: 31
    Total Sales: $833.25
    Cost of Items Sold: $62.2
    Average Price Sold: $26.88
    Average Cost of Item: $2.01
    Highest Price Items Sold: $85 - 2 pairs of Ferragamo shoes and $84.95 for a Lenovo laptop
    Number of items listed this week: 73
    Average age of items in store (in days since listing): 131
    Average number of days between listing and selling this week: 55 days
    Median number of days between listing and selling this week: 9 days
    Sell-through rate: 3.20%
    Hats sold: 17

    Surprisingly this was my best week ever (in a year of reselling) in terms of the number of sales. I sold a few of my higher priced items including a couple of pairs of Ferragamo shoes that I've had for quite a long time (I picked them up thanks to a tip from the S.L podcast last year). I also sold a laptop that I picked up cheaply at a yard sale.

    I noticed an interesting stat tonight while doing the numbers above. I've been calculating the average number of days between listing and selling this week for a while now but tonight I also calculated the edian number of days between listing and selling this week and found it was just 9 days. Basically half of my sales were items that were listed very recently.

    Jay - I don't know if you caught the news this week but the Amazon Flow App functionality has been integrated with the Amazon Seller App as of this week.

    1. I looked at my Flow app on the iPhone and there's no update. Still wants to push me over to the consumer version of the Amazon app.

      Congrats on the good week. That's awesome. How's your wife doing in her new eBay life?

    2. This comment has been removed by the author.

    3. Other way around Jay. On Android, if you go into the Seller App, the Flow functionality is available. I believe it can be toggled on and off in the app. I googled for information regarding the iPhone app but couldn't find a lot. Someone said it exists there however.

      My wife is still listing hats for me but I think she is already getting bored. She doesn't source with me and hasn't expressed an interest in listing anything else so I can't predict where this is going. Even with a full time job and a very long commute, I still do a lot more on the eBay biz than she does as a home-maker.

  7. otal Items in Store: 648
    Items Sold: 29
    Total Sales: $1141.75
    Cost of Items Sold: $253
    Average Price Sold: $39.37
    Highest Price Items Sold: 119 (Tumi Suit Luggage picked up a block away at a garage sale for $15.)

    Another cool sale was there was this Buddhist/Meditation Guy who made a bunch of retreats and books on CD. Picked up about 20 for about 25 bucks. Sold 5 of them for 90 bucks.

    Other than that, I cant keep up with all of the stuff I am getting. My "death" piles are growing but its not because Im not listing. Its a good problem to have. Also I dont know if anyone is like me but I am pretty much a thriftaholic. I go to two thrift stores every day 7 days a week. I really have this feeling that I have to go or I will miss something. Seriously if there was a support group, I should go, but not without stopping by a thrift store on the way there. Ahhh...

    1. PS, I am looking forward to hearing the podcast on the way to work. I was an ultra runner, but doing ebay, working full time, raising two young kids AND ultra running is a little much. I am sure Mikey and Wendy would agree. They probably run 20 hours a week or more to do what they do

    2. Retro Treasures WVJune 6, 2016 at 9:26 AM

      You just have to keep bumping up your minimum sale price to justify buying an item. When that doesn't work, start throwing in size and packing constraints. For instance, a big puffy jacket or a large piece of electronics must make you $50-100 to justify storage and packing. Something that fits in your hand and can just be thrown in a bubble mailer you can live with $10-$20 profit.
      Lastly, forego the stuff you aren't sure will sell quickly. Stick to things that sell frequently on ebay to insure quick turnover.

      I do these constraints and I can STILL walk out with a cart full of goods at every thrift I visit. It's crazy! There is so much excellent inventory out there once you open yourself up to selling anything. It can be very overwhelming.

    3. Thanks, yes, I have upped my standards, but continually need to do that and ask myself is it worth my time...or storage space.

  8. RR Store Week May 29 - June 4, 2016

    Total Items in Store: 1176
    Items Sold: 30
    Cost of Items Sold: $49.74
    Total Sales: $599.22
    Highest Price Sold: $44.99 (Phoenix Suns Jacket)
    Average Price Sold: $19.97
    Returns: 1
    Money Spent on New Inventory This Week: $26
    Number of items listed this week: 39

    I put a good chunk of my store on sale this week at 50% off. It's stuff that's been listed for over a year and a half or longer. I was so glad to see lots of old items sell, but damn...I wish some of my more expensive stuff would sell too! But I'm grateful for the sales no matter what.

    Today I got a really nice social media boost. I recently sold a 1950's lucite vanity set to another Instagram user named @vintagevandal. She has a HUGE following, and promised to promote my business if I gave her a deal on the set. I did, and this weekend she posted two photos AND a video of the set, and then encouraged her followers to follow me. As a result, I got over 150 new followers within an hour or so. All women, and all vintage enthusiasts with money to spend. Which is great, because women's vintage clothing is a slow seller for me. I might even try some direct sales on Instagram, outside of eBay. Either way, I need more content on my account, like a photo a day, at least. It'll be fun.

    OK, back to work!


    1. Cyndi (amazing*taste)June 7, 2016 at 7:34 AM

      Awesome! I love Instagram! I got three sales from there over the weekend also. :)

  9. Loved the interview, I like how M & W always seem carefree. I have a question about the slides that you guys sell occasionally. Do you put a copyright over the image so people can't copy it, or do you even worry about that? Wondering because I found some in a thrift store from 1964 and want to put up a listing soon.

    1. We never foll with watermarks. The photos you post will be low quality for reuse.

    2. Jay is correct... as someone who does photography & graphic design on the side, the resolution of the eBay photos is not high enough to produce a quality printed piece. Can you print from those photos? Yes. Will it look like garbage? Yes as well. :)

    3. I never understood watermarks unless I'm selling widgets that I ship over from China. I have 1 cool item X. If someone has the same item, who cares if they use my picture?

    4. I would guess that it's for quality control purposes. They want you to post a picture of the exact item you're selling, especially if it's antique/vintage to show the condition. If we're all selling NIB items, sure a stock photo would be fine.

    5. Thank you, a watermark is what I was thinking of. Yeah, I saw it on other people's slides and just didn't know the pros/cons of doing that. Thanks for your answer!

  10. Week May 29 - June 4, 2016

    Total Items in Store: 724
    Items Sold: 9 (3 Amazon)
    Cost of Items Sold: $65
    Total Sales: $287.84
    Highest Price Sold: $112 (wool 48 Star flag)
    Average Price Sold: $32
    Returns: 0
    Money Spent on New Inventory This Week: $120
    Number of items listed this week: 16

    Ok week. Much better than last so I'll look at that positive. Jay will get excited when he sees I sold another flag. I love them - usually not expensive to pick up at an estate sale, easy to list & store (I fold them into a triangle), and then sell for high dollars. I paid $15 for this one that sold.

    Picking was pretty good... seemed to be a perfume day on Saturday. At 2 separate sales I picked up partial bottles of really really high end stuff - first sale was a 60% bottle of Chanel No5 with the original box (paid $5), then another sale had Guerlain Shalimar, Quelques Fleurs Houbigant, and a Floryme - paid $10 each for those. I usually strike out at yard sales around here but stumbled on to one that was a multi family deal. Mostly kids clothes and junky modern toys, but I found a Mexican Sterling Silver & Abalone pendant on a random table. Guy was asking $30 for it but talked him down to $20. After research, found the hallmarks to be of a well know silversmith from the 50s-60s. Priced it at $130 to see what happens (silver value is only in the $30 range).

    1. Maybe the 48-star flags are just everywhere in your area. I think we've only seen one of those flags and it was a cheaper flag that was printed (versus being sewn).

  11. Neat to hear from these two. They definitely have a unique lifestyle.

    I'm in my 4th month of not listing, and I'm still selling stuff. Sales are definitely down, but I'm still making a couple hundred and that's awesome for just shipping.

    Store dropped from 360 items to 300 on the nose. I'm finally getting through some of the piles that I had, but it's hard because the time I used to spend working on eBay (530-630AM) has been taken up by a little meat nugget who likes to wake up early.

    1. I'm surprised no one has responded to this comment. FOUR MONTHS OF NOT LISTING! I'd love to hear your results over the four months. Are sales just dead? or did they slowly drop off?

    2. Sales are a lot slower. As of last month in 2015, I had $4900 in sales and $2300 profit. In 2016, I have had only $2800 in sales and $1400 in profit.

  12. Retro Treasures WVJune 6, 2016 at 9:38 AM

    Weekly numbers

    Items in store: 332
    Items sold: 13 (1 Bonanaza, 2 Facebook, 10 ebay)
    Sales: $734
    COGS: $71
    Profit: $663
    Average Sales Price: $56.46
    Average profit: $36.14
    Best item: 1996 USA Olympics Basketball Windbreaker - $150

    Amazon FBA numbers:
    Items sold: 8
    Fees: $80.30
    COGS: $36
    Profit: $178.38
    Average profit: $22.30

    I had some really awesome sales this week. Two pair of shoes I listed sold for $100 each full price within a day. The Olympic Jacket sale was so awesome! I also sold a sealed 100 pack of 3.5" floppy discs on Amazon for $150.

    I am back to the office today after two weeks at home with the new baby. It is sooo hard to go back to waking up with an alarm clock and commuting 30 minutes to sit in a cubicle all day. During the break I did not meet my listing goals, but I did tackle and conquer my storage building. This was much more important than listing! I added an additional 60" clothing wardrobe and 3 of the 60"x24"x72" metal storage shelf units. I had to dump all of my bags of unlisted inventory that I had just been piling up onto the yard and then sorted it all into tubs. I'm not 100% done, but I now have it all under control and have a system to build on. Now to get crack-a-lackin on listing all of that stuff!

    1. That Olympic jacket is amazing. Where did it ship to? I totally see a hipster bro in Massachusetts/Connecticut/Long Island (or one coming from Brooklyn) buying that to wear on his boat for 4th of July weekend. Hehehe.

    2. Crazy since that wasn't even the dream team! I had sold a Charles Barkley replica Dream Team jersey for $75 and was happy with that. Your sale is fantastic!

    3. Retro Treasures WVJune 6, 2016 at 11:43 AM

      The buyer was in Irvine California. My assumption is that someone wants to wear it to the Olympics this year.
      I had $200 on it as BIN. I didn't even counter when I got the $150 offer. Lol.

      If you think that sale was good, then check this one out:

      I've said it before and I'll say it again, Man I loves me some dirty nasty shoes!! :)

    4. Sold a pair of Doc Martens last week for $90.00 only paid $1.00 for them at a yard sale. So I will sing the same tune I love selling used shoes.

    5. I sold some Jordans for $79 (free shipping to GSP, only cost $8). I had them up for $119 which was way too high so I accepted the $79 offer.

      The old basketball shoes are really popular!

    6. Liz, do you have to convert Dr. Martens sizes into US?

    7. Go to Dr Martens website. They have all the conversions. Put them in your ad. You won't have any problems. Generally, people looking for Docs KNOW what DM size they are looking for.

  13. Week of May 29-June 4, 2016

    Total in-store: 1811
    Total Sales: $781.71
    # Items sold: 31
    Avg Price: $25.22
    COGs: $206.92
    Highest price: $50 vintage Levi’s
    International: 1 (Pitcher and cups IFC to Australia)
    Returns: 0
    Spent on new inventory: $28
    Number of items Listed: 82
    Total donated to Project Semicolon: $15.90
    Sold on Amazon MF – $16.29
    Sold on Amazon FBA - 0
    Sold on Bonanza - 0

    Still plugging along, headed for 2,000 listings. Trying to up my daily listing goal from 10 to at least 15. If I'm organized, I can do it. The monotony definitely gets to me, though, and I have to go do something else for awhile. I organize inventory or clean something around the house. Did not source much at all this week. Only hit two garage sales on my way to the post office, but focused on getting through the boxes of my daughter's things. There is a huge church sale this week that was amazing last year, so I am looking forward to the "preview" night on Thursday.

    1. Any knowledge you could drop on us about vintage Levi's? I personally know nothing about them, so what do you look for? What differentiates a $50 (or more) pair of Levis from a $5 pair? Thanks!

    2. Retro Treasures WVJune 6, 2016 at 2:29 PM

      Red tab Levis have value. They literally have a red tab on the back pocket. I don't buy them as local thrifts charge $6 for jeans. I don't want a bunch of generic Levi's clogging up my storage space that only sell for $20-30 and can take forever to sell.

    3. Don't modern Levis also have the red tag? Or is the red tag in a different place/font/size?

    4. Made in USA will be on the large paper size tag on the rear. The whole Levi's market has come way down since they peaked back in the late 90's. However the ones with a capital or "Big E" are the more valuable ones. Up until very recently Levi's stopped making ANY of their jeans in the USA in the late 80's from what I recall. Same with the trucker and sherpa jackets.Look for the sherpa. That is always a great seller at approximately $100.

    5. When I first started selling, we found a garbage bag full of my brother's Levi's from high school while cleaning out my Mom's garage (he graduated in 1980). They were orange tab bell bottoms, and I sold them for $69-$99 a pair. The size & fabric content tags were different from the ones in modern Levi's. The tags were attached to the inside front pocket seam instead of the center back. They are a little hard to find since they curl up from washing. I researched the crap out of them since I was curious and wanted to get it right. Lots of good info online about dating vintage Levi's jeans and trucker jackets. There are subtle things like stamps on the back of the waist button, zipper pull branding, the number of stitches at the waist/pockets and tag placement that help date them. Made in USA is always a very good selling point you want in your title. The Levi's website is a good source, as well as collector sites such as and I have never found the super high value selvedge red tabs, but have done very well with vintage bell bottoms from '70s-'80s, baggys and relaxed styles from the '80s/'90s. I sell quite a few SilverTabs (Baggy style sells best), Carpenter style and for some reason, Black jeans seem to do well, too. Sizes larger than 38 sell well, but I have sold just as many 32s and 34s. They just take a bit longer. Don't worry about frays, stains, holes - just disclose all flaws. These styles have loyal followings, and people will buy regardless of condition. I should mention these were all Men's jeans. The only Women's Levi's I've been able to sell were the high-waisted "mom style" popular with the kids these days. My youngest daughter loves them.

  14. Jay and Ryanne, Having followed you since your 20th episode, I LOVE when Wendy and Mikey join up with you. You can hear the enthusiasm and feel the excitement of your earlier days:) Great interview as always, thanks for sharing with all of us.

    1. We miss them, but glad they've thrown themselves into new projects.

  15. deb truervalues

    Week May 30-June 5
    Listings 1593
    Total Sales: $ 468.20
    Number of items sold: 19
    Average Sale price: $ 24.64
    Cost of Goods sold $ 45.00
    Highest price sold: $ 40.00 BSA International Camporee Poncho (Canada) with 11 patches

    Item of note from last week- Sold a Medieval Style Pewter Pitcher with dragon on the handle for $79. Paid $10 at local thrift store on half price day.

    International Sales: 1
    Returns: 0
    Number of items Listed : 64
    Spent on new inventory: $ 80.00
    Find of the week: Yellow Tupperware canisters from the 70s in excellent condition – 2 sets, Cost $2 – will sell for about $60-70. Also found some really cool fish platters, signed.

  16. I would love to subscribe to The Good Life Lab but can't find a subscribe link or button on their site. Anyone else having trouble?

    1. Cheryl, you can use this feed to subscribe:

  17. 5/29-6/4/16
    Total items in store: 362
    Items sold: 10
    Cost of Items Sold: $11 retail + $18 thrift
    Total Sales: $197.41
    Avg. price: $19.74
    Highest price item: $39.99 Chaco Shoes
    International sales: 0
    Returns: 0
    Money spent on new inventory: $84.77
    Number of items listed: 11

    I sold three $10 items on Saturday which brought my average price down. Oddest sale - Male Playmate Ironing board cover - it was new in the package.

    1. I didn't know about Chaco shoes but see they sell for relatively good prices in good used condition. And they're made in the USA? Wunnerful.

  18. Hi everybody, looks like we are getting into summer in my neck of the woods. From this week on out, I hope to be posting like crazy so 4th quarter goes smoothly. I spent what turned out to be a grueling Saturday on a buying spree: some great Danish wrought iron pieces, and some seen on tv plumbing products and a super cool Shulpe folk art sign. I will post my numbers shortly. Here's an eclectic mix of crap I sold on eBay. ;).

    1. Good job on the Batman lid! I don't know if I would have picked it up, or have sold it as easily. You always sell interesting stuff. Sorry about the Carebear, I've had some shipping woes myself in the past.

    2. Thanks for covering the vintage wrap. I didn't think of offering media mail. Have a ton of that to list.

    3. What do you know that I don't? Wrapping paper doesn't fit the Media Mail guidelines on the USPS website. Is it officially allowed?

    4. No. And I hope she just made a mistake.

  19. May 29th – June 4th

    Total Items in Store: 182
    Items Sold: 15
    Cost of Items Sold: $70.28
    Average Cost of Items Sold: $4.69
    Total Sales: $543.82
    Highest Price Sold: $59.99 (Hat)
    Average Price Sold: $36.25
    Returns: 0
    Money Spent on New Inventory This Week: $89.52
    Number of items listed this week: 8

    Plugging along. My ASP generally dips in the warm-weather months. Lightweight clothes and sandals just don't sell for as much as sweaters, coats and boots. Easier to ship, though.

  20. 680 items in store. What sold #12

  21. Retro Treasures WVJune 6, 2016 at 3:39 PM

    Wow, I already have 6 sales for $265 today (Monday starts my week). I hope this is a start to an awesome week!

  22. May 29 - June 4
    Total items in store - 901
    Sold - 8
    COGS - $15.00
    Highest Price Sold $89.99 Doc Martens
    Ave Price Sold - $41.74
    INTL - 0
    Returns - 0
    Spent on new merch - $89.00
    New Listings - 6

    Loved today’s podcast, bio-hacking that was a first for me.
    This morning I made my once a month Monday morning trip to my favorite Thrift Store. I love this store because it’s still under the radar. I packed full one of those blue plastic ikea bags it cost me $30.00. Next weekend is going to be between 97 & 99 so I will stay home and list.

  23. Flim Store Week May 29 - June 4, 2016

    Total Items in Store: 525
    Items Sold: 14
    Cost of Items Sold: $116
    Total Sales: $778.90
    Highest Price Sold: $165 (NWT bag)
    Average Price Sold: $55.64
    Returns: 0

    Upgraded my store to a Premium level after doing the fee calculations. Reorganized my shipping station and realized I have 2 giant garbage bags-worth of unlisted shoes. Ughhhhh. Pretty decent week though!

    1. Please keep us up to date as you transition to full time. You have such a great eye for items in NYC that Im curious how quickly it'll take you to start making serious money.

      How much do you need to Net per month to replace your lost job income?

    2. Retro Treasures WVJune 8, 2016 at 8:46 AM

      Just two? ;)

      I filled up 8 tubs with unlisted shoes when I organized my storage shed this past weekend.

    3. $3400 net would replace my income, but my costs are a bit less since I'm not paying for a monthly Metrocard as well as those pricey lunches out. So I'll say $3200.

    4. Retro - Unfortunately my storage shed happens to be my apartment, so 2 is about all I can stand!

    5. So you need to make at least $800 a week. You're getting close already!

    6. Hey Jay.. She said "NET" $3,200. So we don't get into those long thread replies of net vs. gross, COGS and tax discussions.. let's just take her numbers. Above Flim states $779 Gross Sales and $116 COGS = 15% of the Gross, then Ebay / PayPal Fees of let's just use another 15% +/-. That's 30% subtracted from the Gross of $779 Leaving her a modified net of $545. [And at some point some type of income will be reported to IRS and taxes paid on it-but let's even forget that for now and just go with her Gross and the two costs subtracted]. Then to make a $3,200 net with only a 15% COGS and Ebay-PayPal of 15% [30% Total] she will need to Gross about $5,000 per month to equal very roughly a $3,500 month net after COGS, Ebay, PayPal. And for those that like to Micro manage these weekly numbers, that's $1,250 per week, or $178 dollars per day, each and every month and-or day of year. Double check me, and maybe I missed something, but she said "NET" so there has to be "some kind of rough expenses considered", wouldn't you think?? mike in Atl.

    7. Yep, that's sounds correct. I did say she was "getting close". Not there yet.

      But let's talk about the larger issue of replacing a job salary with eBay income.
      --A person's salary is not their take home pay. If you make $50k a year, your take home pay is less because of all the taxes taken out.
      --As Flim said, she doesn't have the cost of transportation to work each day.
      --She also mentioned saving money on lunches which is HUGE is NYC. If she saves even $15/day on food by eating at home, that's a huge savings.
      --Also, we've experienced ourselves that once we started living as Scavengers, we simply lived cheaper. Every dollar we spend matters. We much more conscious of where our money goes vs when we worked jobs and had a steady paycheck.

      So I bet Flim wont NEED to make as much as she did in her job to survive. But I also bet that she'll make MUCH MORE if she puts in 40/hrs a week into her eBay business.

  24. deb truervalues

    Hi Flim - Amazing how that stuff hides from you!

    1. Hi Deb, it's frightening when I took everything out of their corners! Eeek!

  25. Total items in store: 382
    Items sold: 11
    Cost of items sold: 91
    Total sales: $549.83
    Highest price sold: $70
    Average price sold $44 +/-
    Returns: 0
    I'm starting to experiment with sales to move aging stale inventory.
    also, here's my latest sales update video for May 16-31.

    1. How old does an item have to be to be considered "stale" in your store? I know we all have our different definitions.

  26. Cyndi (amazing*taste)June 7, 2016 at 7:41 AM

    Great podcast! Always enjoy hearing from Mike and Wendy. I especially loved hearing them talk about finding what to sell from a particular area. I have been trying to tell people this for a long time. If you try and do what I do from somewhere else, you are most likely leaving big money on the table. Every area has something that is valuable and plentiful you just have to figure out what that is in your area. If I went searching for cowboy hats and boots today I would be sorely disappointed even though there is big money in those items. That isn't what is plentiful in my area.

    Anyhow a slightly slower week for us, we did just under 4k last week. June is historically our slowest month so I expected it. We ran some auctions, and I was once again reminded that I STINK at auctions! I know lots of people do them with great success, but I am not one of those people. :)

    Have a great week everyone!

    1. Totally incredible to hear your sales numbers. Just curious what your motivation is because I know it takes a huge amount of work to sell that much.

      Is it paying off college tuition for your kids?

    2. Cyndi (amazing*taste)June 8, 2016 at 7:00 AM

      Our motivation is completely centered on the kids. It is a long story, but it ends with due to a severe learning disability we now pay for private school for 2 of our children. Not only is that expensive, but it ties us to this area which is also expensive.

      Aside from that our oldest is in college and we are doing everything possible so that he can go to school and graduate with no student loan debt. He is making sacrifices (living at home, going to community college for the first two years, etc)so he can do his part to be debt free also.

      Kids are great, but man are they expensive!!

  27. So great to hear from Mikey & Wendy. Love them!!! Their book, The Good Life Lab and Your Money or Your Life have both transformed my life and my thinking about money, materialism and early retirement. They are such an inspiration!! Thanks so much for having them on again!

  28. Total Items in Store: 291
    Items Sold: 10
    Total Sales: $245
    Cost of Items Sold: $11 (used) + $107 (new)
    Average Price Sold: $25
    Highest Price Item Sold: $103 (8 Anthropologie nut bowls to NYC - paid $48)
    Sell-through rate: 1.0%
    Returns: 1 threatened but not shipped - clothing fit
    GSP: 0
    Spent on new items: $101 (New hardware)

    Busy life week with school ending, contract work, and a camping weekend. I decided to end a few listings and auction a couple of stale items in my store, just to try and improve traffic to my listings and move out old items, so lower ASP.

    It was nice to hear from Mike and Wendy, as they are so sharp. I wish they would have elaborated on what types of items they are currently focused on for Ebay and find in the different locales. I recall they kept to smalls back in the day and I liked Wendy's décor items. I hope to get to the point where I can run through places with precision, buying only higher profit items that through experience I know will move quickly rather than getting distracted by smaller items I just find retro and appealing. Interesting that they are still mostly doing bread and butter $30-40 sales. Maybe the sweet spot for Ebay when you are surfing and find something you weren't necessary planning on buying?

    Well, back this week to listing my backlog of vintage items - some I would buy again, some not so much.

  29. I will never put my store in vacation mode again...

    In the past, when I would be away from the store for an extended period of time, I would set the store in vacation mode and/or just the let the listing expire. Generally not selling much during this time.

    Before I left for a 3 week trip, I extended my handling time and added a highlighted note within the description for all of the listings. Sales continued as normal and best of all, not one customer asked to cancel their order. Anecdotally, this tip will earn me more $$$ than if I had put the store in vacation mode.

    I just want to give you guys a huge thank you for bringing together like minded ebay sellers. Your site is a great source of information.


    1. Yep, just extend handling time. People will wait.

  30. Hi,
    This message is for Paulo. I was curious to hear more about your experience with eCrater. I just started an upload of my Ebay items into eCrater. Do you publish items that are exclusive to eCrater or do you cross post to other platforms? I noticed on their website that there was a warning about duplicate listings being found by Google being a problem. I should mention that I have my inventory cross posted to Bonanza, and some items to Etsy.
    Thanks in advance.

  31. How would everyone handle this situation. I recently sold a boombox, for several hundred dollars, and everything worked when I tested it. I even made a video showing how well it works. The customer writes me saying the tape player does not work, he only bought mine because the tape player worked, and the ones he bought in the past did not work. He wants a partial refund back.

    Is it possible that the tape player got damaged during shipping? I double boxed it and it had tons of Styrofoam around it.

    How would everyone handle this?

    1. First, ask for proof. Have him make a video of it not working. If he can prove it doesn't work, ask if he'd take $25 or something - he can use that money to get it repaired. As an option, ask him to go get it repaired and you'll pay the repair bill.

      If he cannot or is not willing to prove it doesn't work, he may just be fishing for a discount. Tell him he can return for a full refund.

    2. If he only bought it for the tape deck, why is he so anxious for a partial refund. This may be one of those cases, in which you may want to "roll the dice" and offer a 100% refund with a return. There's a chance you may never hear from him again.

    3. You are being played (pun intended). Why keep something that you purchased because the one feature you wanted doesn't work. They should return it, not ask for a discount.

      I generally pay for shipping for returned item if it is my error. ie sold a defective item.

      I offer the buyer 2 options. A discount for what is would cost to have the item sent back. (this is my discounted price. much less than the retail PO price). Or return the item. I don't think I ever once had an item returned when a buyer has asked for a discount for an apparent defect. Besides, chances are, you would not be able recoup the additional cost if you attempted to resell the returned item. Other issue you need to stress, that if the item is returned and found not to be defected, that the buyer pays for the returned item.

    4. I was a little worried this might be a play on his part too, but wasn't for sure. Here is the message he sent

      "I finally got back from my trip and open the box for the radio you sent me. I was bummed to find it just like all the other ones I have on this tape player does not work properly. With the condition of the rest of the box the only value and it was the fact that the tape player worked. I am happy to keep the player for parts but in bummed that I'm unable to use the tape player to refurbish another one I had as originally planned"

      Also a few days prior he sent me a message saying how excited he was to get one with a proper working cassette. I looked at his transactions and he sells several boombox parts and boomboxes on ebay.

      After reading his message he doesn't come out and ask for a refund, but maybe his is hinting for one? I am at a lost.

      Thanks everyone

    5. If it's an older boombox which I assume it is if you sold it for a few hundred dollars, the belts are usually brittle or gummy do to age, it may have worked long enough for a video presentation but failed upon arrival.
      Ask him what he thinks is fair, belt repair is tricky and can be costly, then decide if if throwing some money at the problem is worth it to be done.
      In the he future, list it the same way, full description with video but put it in the condition category of 'For parts not working', it will still sell but you won't have to guarantee it or take a return.

    6. As others have said, we just ask for proof of damage. If there's proof, we'll make it right in the appropriate way (partial or full refund).

      If the buyer doesn't want to give proof, we just say "send back for full refund". We'd rather lose money on shipping than feel ripped off. Sometimes the buyer actually wants the item and was just fishing for a partial refund.

      We're trusting of buyers (i know its weird). All we ask for is a little proof of the damage.

    7. Might be fishing for a refund but more than likely he's telling the truth. Just ask him what he thinks is fair. This is one of the reasons I hate electronics.

    8. @steven - slightly off-topic question but have you ever repaired the belts on personal cassette players. I've stopped buying them as they generally don't work. I expect it is a belt problem (or whatever the equivalent part on a Walkman device is called).

    9. Most cassette players of any kind are very difficult to work on as far as belt replacement goes, a small personal Walkman type would be even more so I suspect. Usually I just move on unless it's a very desirable vintage piece, then someone may want it for parts or restoration.

    10. Retro Treasures WVJune 8, 2016 at 8:50 AM

      I repaired an old VHS camcorder belt system, so I thought I would get into vintage cassette deck repair as well. Long story short, leave it to the pro's! The professional people will buy your high quality but non-working equipment and restore it for sale.
      There are ALOT of very tiny parts and screws in there.

    11. I was going to do it on a boombox but watched the video on how to do it and said "Nope!".

  32. May 29- June 4
    • Total Items in Store: 519
    • Items Sold:15
    • Cost of Items Sold: $20
    • Total Sales: $ 306.81
    • Highest Price Sold: $ 36.99 (Old Spice Shaving Mug)
    • Average Price Sold: $21.78
    • Returns: 1
    • Money Spent on New Inventory This Week: $10
    • Number of items listed this week: 15

    It was great to hear an update from Mike & Wendy!

    My average price sold is lower than I’d like it to be, but I’ve been trying to get rid of some old “death piles” full of lower priced items.

    I had an annoying return this week. It was for a dog “Thundershirt” that was like when I sold it. Price was $28.99 and I inadvertently left a restocking fee off of the listing. Reason for return was “Does not fit.” It was returned with stains and full of hair. I was irked and went back and forth with myself on how to handle it. I called Ebay and the rep told me I could offer a partial refund, but I was risking negative feedback and the only way I could get Ebay’s full support was if I could get her to admit she returned it in worse shape than she received it. In the end, I issued a full refund (minus shipping) and then reported and blocked the buyer. Time is money. Thankfully, I was able to wash the shirt and get it back into re-listing shape.

    1. Sounds like you handled it correctly. That's what we'd have done. But goes to show why its nice to have that 20% restocking fee on your items.

  33. Hi,
    This question is for Mikey & Wendy. I just recently moved to New Mexico and am trying to figure out if I have to pay New Mexico Gross Receipts tax. I have sold on ebay in several other states and have never had to file anything to sell on ebay in any other state besides quarterly or end of year taxes which my accountant used my social security number to file. Just wondering if New Mexico was different and can't really find much information online. I haven't gotten an accountant here yet but wanted to get a heads up if there is something specific to this state that I need to be doing.

  34. Some people on here might already be familiar with CraigsList Hunter. I watched this video and found it interesting that he tracks the changes in total listings in various eBay categories. Anybody know where he gets this data from? I don't think he said in the video how he got the numbers.

    1. Why not ask him? He allows questions on his channel, and depending on how busy he is (very) he usually gets back to you.

      Note to Jay and Ryanne, Chrome for Android isn't letting me sign in, have to use another browser. Is anyone else having issues with it that you know of? Thanks for all you do.

    2. I know this may be an obvious answer, but my wife is always telling me that she is having trouble with one thing or another and my stock reply is, "when did you last turn your phone off and back on?". She tells me a month ago. my answer, "well do so now." Guess what, most issues clear up on the spot.

      So, try shutting your phone completely off, what about 5 to 10 minutes then turn it back on. Re-booting a phone and clearing it out and getting fresh updates seems to keep my Android HTC phone running pretty well.

      Sorry if this is so basic and you did this the moment you had issues. But worth repeating for those who never turn off their computers at night and or phones occasionally. mike in atl.

    3. Iris,
      I apologize if the wording of my post was a bit off. My main intent was to share that video and possibly start some discussion about the numbers he is tracking.

    4. Thanks, Mike! You 're right, I had tried that. No, it didn't work, but I appreciate the suggestion! :) What caused the issue is that I had disabled the allowing of 3rd party cookies on my phone. Once I reallowed that, all was good again. I'd posted on here before but I'd changed phones since then. Oh well. Thanks again for wanting to help me out!

    5. Thanks, Mike! You 're right, I had tried that. No, it didn't work, but I appreciate the suggestion! :) What caused the issue is that I had disabled the allowing of 3rd party cookies on my phone. Once I reallowed that, all was good again. I'd posted on here before but I'd changed phones since then. Oh well. Thanks again for wanting to help me out!

  35. I am on day 8 with no sales on ebay--I have been listing btw...this hasn't happened in a couple of years and I am sort of shocked, I am selling things on Etsy so that is sort of keeping me afloat. The new seller's hub tells me that my sales are down 40% from the same time last year, even so, I keep buying and will keep listing even though it is discouraging.

    1. Wow, 8 days is a long time!

    2. Omfug X, Try running a MM Sale in two categories of items, and see if that helps. I have been doing one-day MM sales in 2 or 3 categories, and my sales are better than I expected at this time of the year. I do not have any scientific proof that this works, but at least I avoid the zero sale days, for the most part.

    3. Pat I have a sale running, I haven't gotten one new sale out of it. I would say that something is really wrong with my store's visibility, but according to the seller's hub my views are pretty normal, I guess that I don't have anything for sale that anyone wants this summer.

    4. Omfug,

      I have a similar sized store and have gone over 2 weeks without a sale. I'll be interested to know how long this dry spell lasts. My guess is you will have a small flurry of sales by the end of next week. I hate to speculate about these things, but one thing is for sure, most people get paid every two weeks.

      I would say good luck, but let's face it, you are an experienced seller who has had consistent sales over time. You don't need luck. ;)

      This is just spit-balling but etsy seems to be getting better for you, if you feel like it, why don't you push yourself a bit and list a bunch there this summer. See what happens...


    5. Hi - I don't really know for sure that it works, but historically it has helped me to run a couple of auctions. Supposedly Cassini likes that. I hope things turn around for you soon!

    6. Omfug X, Try running sales on individual categories in your store, rather than the whole store. This allows you to set up a new sale in another category a couple of times a day, and makes more activity in your store. Plus, only run each sale for 24 hours, and then you can keep the cycle going the next day, and see if this helps improve your number of items selling.

      This is what I have been doing recently, and it has helped me have more consistent sales, but if cannot prove that it works with any scientific data. And like many actions, it helps me feel like I have more control over my store.

  36. Can someone help me out. How do you put items on sale over a certain price? I know in markdown manager you can pull up items over a certain price by choosing individually but it will only let you select 100 which is the page 1. How do I add the other pages? I used to recall a secondary sale method after you initiate markdown manager where you can adjust things but I don't see that anymore. Thanks.

    1. yeah ebay is clunky with stuff like this. your best bet is to use the bulk editor to change the price. you can search for any items over x amount and then change the price. sadly that won't trigger a sale and i think people search for stuff on sale. might be worth calling ebay to ask though.

    2. Yeah, I don't understand why they don't have a "sale" button in the bulk editor. You should be able to press "sale," select the percentage, and just click every listing individually. Maybe it's because they outsourced the sale aspect of ebay..?

    3. You can add unlimited items in Markdown Manager. Check the ones you want on the first page, click to the next page and check the ones you want there, etc. Click "continue" and all the items will be in your sale.

  37. May 29th – June 4th
    Total Items in Store today: 118
    Items Sold: 16
    Cost of Items Sold: about $90
    Total Sales: $578.10
    Highest Price Sold: $125 (vintage toy)
    Average Price Sold: $36.12
    Returns: 0

    Highlights: Listed 24 things last week. Death piles became minuscule. Yay!
    I paid $2 for a vintage organizer. Inside it was $2. Yay!
    I sold a lot of 5 small things. I mailed them. I found one of the things in a bin. Boo! Buyer hadn't realized yet.
    I sent it to him separately. He was nice about it. Cost me $1.15, so a cheap but important lesson.
    I am getting a lot of offers on things. Most of them above 50% of value, I take and am happy with.
    I'm just grateful things continue to sell.
    BOLO: Helen Kaminsky women's visors.
    Mikey and Wendy: Congrats on living your life your way and doing what you love to do. Sounds very rewarding and fun.

  38. Have you guys thought of doing private labelling on Amazon? It's not saving things from the waste stream but it's passive income once you get it going.

    1. Retro Treasures WVJune 8, 2016 at 8:54 AM

      Anonymous, do you do Private label? If so maybe you can share your experiences with it.

    2. (I'm not the anon that suggested private label)
      There is a product locally I'd like to sell as a private label. The company that makes it already sells it on amazon, but no one would know my product would have anything to do with their product because it would actually be hidden inside another piece and marketed differently. I don't know how to approach them or really what to say because they could just take my idea. One option is to propose the idea to them. If they said they didn't want to do it, maybe they'd let me do it. If they said they did want to do it, I'd probably just lose out. Maybe this is too vague for people to respond, but, any ideas?

    3. p.s. my product would still compete with theirs, just not 100% directly. Their calculation would have to be how much could we make wholesaling to a private label vs. losing some retail sales. I would be very small-time compared to them. So small they might not even talk to me in the first place.

  39. Hi Guys & Gals: Have heard the word "shed" mentioned couple times this week and also several times in the past. We are exploring the thought of buying one of those "Kit" type sheds from the big box store and having it built at the end of the driveway.
    As some of you know we have been pulling out from the Antique Mall here in the Atlanta area and down sizing from 6 booths (600 SF) to now only two booths, but it is all bigger furniture type pieces, so that won't fit our garage shelf storage system.
    We would like to get some feedback from those of you that have outside sheds the pros and cons, a good size, on slab or above ground, gable or flat roof, maybe the cost and size you have. Anything to help us make a go or no go decision on having a shed built.
    The booths are $75 ea a month for a total of $150 per month "rent". We figured about $800 for a 10x10 kit and about $800 labor = about $1,600 to complete. We would have to pay about $1,800 for another year of renting the Antique Mall booths, less sales of course, but not much is selling at the booths now that we have downsized and pulled out all the smalls for the Ebay store.
    Any insights into the "I built a Shed" experience would be much appreciated. thanks Mike in Atlanta

    1. You logic makes sense. If your eBay business is now a long term part of your life, it makes sense to invest in home storage.

      We have a bunch of sheds that were existing when we bought a couple pieces of land. Just small old farming structures. They aren't fancy at all, but allow us to keep hard goods that just need to be kept dry. Heat and cold do not matter.

      But like you, we're planning to invest in erecting a large steel storage building behind our house. It'll be about 40' x 20'. Will cost about $8k installed.

      If we rented that much space, we'll probably pay it off in 5 years. The big plus is that all our inventory will be in one place. We can also not use our porches and home to store inventory. And we have room to grow.

      This is probably the dealer we'll use:

    2. Thanks everyone for the Shed / Garage info. We will have to compare the research to the budget amount vs. the savings on those booths to see where we go from there. mc in atl.

    3. Retro Treasures WVJune 8, 2016 at 3:38 PM

      Also consider rent to own on the sheds. All of the local places do that as well. You can maintain your existing monthly costs but eventually own the shed. It'll cost more in the long run but would not require capital investment. You can always pay it off during the payment period.

  40. My advice is to get good quality and build it bigger than you think you'll need. It is amazing how fast they fill up. I have a 2 car garage and a "bomb" shelter I use for storage and last year had a 16 X 9 foot shed built. I have built and rebuilt shelving systems for all of them.

    My goal now is to use all the space I have as efficiently as possible.


  41. Retro Treasures WVJune 8, 2016 at 12:01 PM

    Where I live there are a ton of places that sell sheds. They are all Amish built. They can be built on site or delivered.

    My shed is a Gambrel Style barn shed. It is 12' wide by 20' overall long. 4' of the length is a porch with an overhead loft. I also have a 4' loft at the other end I added on.

    Metal roof, 3 windows, and a 36" wide entrance door. I love it! The only problem is that I wish I would have made it bigger.

    I believe my cost was $4300. It was built on-site by 5 amish guys - two old timers and three teenagers. The only thing prefab was the trusses. They built the whole thing in 5.5 hours including lunch and break. It was awesome to watch!

    1. what was the company you used? do you have a photo of your shed?

    2. Retro Treasures WVJune 9, 2016 at 11:30 AM
      Is the company.

      Here is a pic of my shed after it was completed.

      Their price was a fraction of what other places wanted. Other local places wanted 6-7k for that same shed, but not nearly as nice. That is not t-111 siding - It is 3/4" plywood. They even made the handrails from scratch on site.

      And yes, true to form they did not use electricity. They used pneumatic tools with a gas generator and gas powered saws. The saws were so cool!

    3. Very Cool RTWV .. I see you said built on site or delivered. Will contact them, get a quote and see about delivery to the north Atlanta area.
      Guess the area over your porch is the "loft area" you mentioned? We probably would for go the porch and capture that cubic footage on the interior and opt for a double swing out door and low incline ramp on the front. I also see you just have the floor joist sitting on what looks like ground level concrete blocks? No sunken footers then I assume? But deck post type footers would suffice if floor joist system is string enough for the span.
      Will call and see what pricing and details they have. Thanks for the details. mike in atlanta

    4. Oops.. went Not Go for the porch and use that space for more interior storage. mc 'n atl

    5. thanks for sharing, this looks great!

    6. Retro Treasures WVJune 9, 2016 at 2:33 PM

      Whoops, I made a mistake. My shed is 12x24 overall, 12x20 for the main shed part. I added 4 feet after they kept delaying my delivery date. I wish they would have delayed a bit more because I would have added 4 more feet. Lol.
      There are three runners and all three are supported by block every 8 feet. It is very well supported. The floor joists are either 2x6 or 2x8 - I can't remember.

      The porch is great for those rainy night runs to the shed. It also allows us a place to sit and watch while the kids play on their playground.

    7. Hey RTWV .. Just spoke with them [Laura]. Unfortunately they have a limited work radius. She said about 400 miles out from their base is about as far as they go and they prefer about half of that. The travel for the Amish guys is just too far. Too bad, they had very good prices. Maybe J&R may be within a good range for them.

  42. Great to hear you again, Mikey and Wendy! It's like running across old friends.

  43. Wow. As a residential real estate agent, I would NEVER imagine using my listing as a pop up shop. That's nuts. And could lead me into great trouble with the seller. I suppose if the seller approved it, then ok. But wow, that's a first for me (to hear). I've staged homes before with my own items, but NEVER sold them. Wild story for sure!