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Feb 112013
 February 11, 2013  Posted by  At Home, Money

In the old days, if you wanted to make money from your home without actually selling it, your options were pretty much to do some fishing in the couch cushions or hold a garage sale. Those are still viable options (according to, there are approximately 165,000 garage sales every week), but there are now many more other others. So for those who don’t want to sell their home or hold a garage sale and who already have cleaned out the living room furniture, here are some websites that you might want to consider checking out.

The money-making website:

What you’ll be selling: Your old gadgets. But instead of selling them to another consumer, you’ll sell them to Gazelle, which will refurbish and resell them to a wholesaler.

How much you might earn: It depends on the worth of the gadget, but in 2012, Gazelle paid an average $400 for a used Apple desktop or laptop. You provide the information describing your iPhone, iPad or whatever you want to sell, and Gazelle will send you the price it’s willing to pay. If you agree to the price, Gazelle will send you a prepaid box that you can use to ship your gadget. You’ll receive emails alerting you that the shipment been received and is being analyzed – your data will be wiped out; the gadget will be checked out to make sure it wasn’t stolen and so on – and then within days, you should either have your check or be alerted that it’s on its merry way.

The money-making website:

What you’ll be selling: Clothes from your closet. Your best fashion pieces, of course, the ones that you don’t wear or haven’t worn much for some reason but could easily imagine someone wanting to buy. You’ll probably be relieved and kind of sad that nobody wants your threadbare Cyndi Lauper T-shirt.

How much you might earn: What’s your closet worth? If you have a leather jacket you think you could sell for $300, then you’ll post that price, and if someone buys it, you’ll earn $300, minus the 9% commission that Tradesy collects for having the website and handling some of what they call “the messy bits.” For instance, when you get a sale, you don’t have to do much, like handling customer service calls or worrying about how you’re going to mail that leather jacket. Tradesy sends you a shipping kit; you put the clothes in the bag and pop it in the mail.

The money-making web site:

What you’ll be selling: That old saxophone you haven’t played since high school, or the tuba you bought for your kid before you realized he hates the tuba.

How much you might earn: Hard telling, but you’ll get some of what you or your parents paid for your instrument. UsedInstrumentBuyer will quote you a price, after you describe the instrument in depth and submit photos. The instrument needs to work, so if you have a saxophone you haven’t played since high school that wasn’t stored properly, and you can barely get a note out of it, you may not get very far with this site.

The website:

What you’ll be selling:  Your old wedding dress, naturally. The one you never wear anymore and, especially if you didn’t have kids or had sons, the one that will probably never be worn again.

How much you might earn:  You pay a one-time fee of $25 to put a listing up on PreOwnedWeddingDresses, and you can price the dress at whatever you think the market can bear. Maybe you’ll earn $400. Maybe you’ll earn $1,400. It depends on your gown and what you think people will pay for it. Of course, if you wind up using the aforementioned Tradesy, and have a good experience, you can choose to sell your dress through that site, too. There are quite a few of these used wedding dress websites out there, though PreOwnedWeddingDress is one of the pioneers of the concept.

The website:

What you’ll be selling: Nothing – except your time and compassion. Are you willing to watch a dog or two in the comfort of your own home? Most pet owners kind of cringe at the idea of boarding their dog in a cage in a kennel, and that’s where you could come in.

How much you might earn: Per dog, you can earn $15 a night or a bit more ($20 a night … $25?) if you think the market will handle it, minus the 15% booking fee that you’ll give to DogVacay. We’re not talking tons of money, but if you’re already home and you like dogs, anyway…

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Geoff Williams

Geoff Williams is based near Cincinnati, Ohio and has been a journalist for approximately 20 years, 13 of that as a full-time freelancer. In that time, he has written for numerous publications including Consumer Reports, Entertainment Weekly, Ladies’ Home Journal and National Geographic Kids. In recent years, he has specialized in personal finance issues, writing for AOL’s WalletPop,,, and and most frequently for Reuters and U.S. News & World Report. He is also the co-author of Living Well With Bad Credit. Williams also is a history buff and is the author of C.C. Pyle's Amazing Foot Race: The True Story of the 1928 Coast-to-Coast Run Across America and the new book Washed Away: How the Great Flood of 1913, America's Most Widespread Natural Disaster, Terrorized a Nation and Changed It Forever.

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