Seasonal kids consignment sales are becoming more and more popular. Consignment sales are all over the United States and Canada. Usually, they are held in the spring and fall seasons, while some have holiday consignment sales.
20+ tips for selling and buying at the kids’ consignment sales are provided to get the most out of the money you receive and the money you save buying new clothes.
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I never paid any attention to kids consignment sales prior to having children, but once I had kids, the ads started popping up on all my social media feeds. Also, all my mommy friends started talking about them.
When I first learned about the sales, I only bought from them. They had some good quality clothes after weeding through the racks and racks of clothes for good deals.
The second season came around and I decided to sell a few things.
Once we had our last baby and outgrew some baby items, I went all out tagging and selling our items. I even volunteered and learned some tips, but we’ll get to those later.
One thing I will say is that there will be upfront costs to sell at the kids’ consignment sales. At my latest sale, here were my costs:
- Child hangers- about $10
- Selling Fee- $10
- Safety pins– $5
- Cardstock paper (I still had some left over from other sales so I didn’t need to purchase a new pack)- $7.50
- Printer Ink- I don’t know the price, but I know it was a cost because I did use my personal printer
- Also, you only make in a range of 60-75% of your sales
- You do not need to advertise your sale
- With these sales, thousands of people already shop because they know the reputation of the sales
- You don’t have to work it if you don’t want to.
- If you don’t want to pick your stuff up, it’ll be donated and you can write it off for taxes as a donation
Here are the 20+ tips and tricks to make the most out of buying and selling at kids’ consignment sales.
Selling at Kids Consignment Sales
1. Organize your clothes by sizes.
If you already put away old clothes by size, it’ll make this step easy. After my kids outgrow a size, I go through their closet and take out the sizes they’ve outgrown. All the clothes go in a garbage bag down in the basement. When consignment season comes around, I pull out the bags and start tagging one bag at a time.
2. Pair up clothes.
Put the pants, sweatshirts, onesies, t-shirts, PJs altogether. This makes it easier to input the tags and tag your clothes later on.
3. Once your clothes are organized, put the clothes in piles and input the information in the tagging program online.
Put one pile of clothes in front of you and start inputting the information. If you are going to price all the t-shirts/pants/pajamas the same, you can easily input “t-shirt” into the tagging program and put in a price.
This will make it easier pinning the tags on later on so you aren’t searching for a specific t-shirt to pair the price tag with.
4. Pin the clothes through a seam or tag AND the hanger (make sure the hanger goes the correct way that the sale specifies)
When I’m a shopper, I look to see where the pin is through. If there’s a pin hole in the top chest of the shirt, I’m not going to purchase it.
Pin the tag where it’s not going to leave a noticeable hole for the new user.
Also, if the pin is big enough, put the pin on the hanger so your clothes don’t accidently drop off the hanger.
5. Do organize everything in an area you can spread out.
When I sold the first time, we didn’t have a lot of space. I had to do my tagging in batches and then I made a pile of the items I was going to sell in a corner.
By the third time I sold items, I spread out throughout our entire basement and put things as I finished tagging them in another area of the basement.
I had piles of each size everywhere and then the non-clothing items elsewhere in a pile.
6. Volunteer for shifts so you earn more money
Most consignment sales offer higher percentages on your sales if you volunteer. It’s very easy to volunteer…most likely you’ll either be setting items out in the right spots as people are dropping off items, or you’ll be cashiering.
7. Rubberband the like sizes together for easy drop-off
Once you’re done tagging and everything is ready to go, rubberband the hangers together. This will make it so much easier at drop-off.
One sale I did, the sellers had to put the items out on the floor so having my items organized by size, made it easy to put the clothes on the rack and move on.
Another sale I did, required the seller to have their items organized by size and gender. Having 15 sets of rubberbanded hangers is so much easier to organize, then 150 individual hanger items. If you accidently drop your clothes, it’s no big deal since it’s easy to get it back in order.
8. Keep the plastic hangers from buying clothes. If you need more, ask stores for their extra hangers. Or buy them cheap at Walmart.
Walmart has the best price for bulk child hangers that I’ve found, but you have to order them online (200 hangers for $19.96). I needed more hangers with my last sale so I found some cheap ones at Target (an 18 pack for $2.99)
9. Have a bunch of small toys? Put them in a clear plastic bag and tape it shut so the toys aren’t lost.
Make it easy for people to see what’s included but difficult for kids to try to play with while their parents are shopping! If you have an item that comes with small pieces, tape the small pieces in a bag and tape the bag to the big item.
10. Group things together to get rid of more and you can charge more.
Have a bunch of onesies? Sell them in bunches of 5. Have a ton of small character toys? Put them in a bag together and sell them all together. Pants sell well in pairs. You can safety pin them together so the person can see them both.
If you sell a bunch of onesies together, pin it so the shoppers can see all the onesies (Make sure to put the cute ones in front so you catch the shoppers eyes! They’ll buy it if they fall in love with it at the beginning rather than the end.)
11. Make sure the clothes are free of stains and the toys work
Volunteers go through each item of clothing and test each toy to make sure it turns on! They only want to sell high-quality items at these sales so that shoppers want to come and can expect only high-quality items!
Go through your own items to ensure no stains. Some sales reward you for not bringing in any clothes that are discarded for stains by allowing you to skip inspection next time you sell!
Also, don’t try to sell any items that are school related or old sports jerseys (not professional or college, I mean like elementary schools or high school sports related items)
12. Ensure there are no recalls on items.
Items need to be safe. Any items that are recalled won’t be allowed unless they have the fixes included. (i.e. the bumbo seat without a seatbelt)
13. If you’re going to donate the item after the sale anyway, mark it for half off for the last day!
I see so many item tags that don’t click the half off check box and yet they’re donating the item after the sale. If you’re going to donate, you might as well try to sell it for half off!
14. Price it at a price YOU would be willing to pay if you saw the item…not a price you want to sell it for.
So many people overprice their items. I’ve seen items with tags on them and the person tries to price the item a few dollars cheaper. Shoppers are coming there to save a significant amount of money rather than barely getting a deal!
Big items or popular items, you can get away with higher prices because there is a demand for those. (i.e. I sold my old Ergo baby carrier for a higher price because that is one item that people are willing to spend more for, even used. It’s an item that holds it’s value) There are so many clothes to choose from, people are going to skip over the high priced items and stick with the cheaper ones!
There are so many clothes to choose from, people are going to skip over the high priced items and stick with the cheaper ones!
15. Zip Ties are great to keep items together!
I didn’t use these, but saw that people did when I volunteered, and it’s a great idea! If you want to pair clothing items together, zip-tie hangers together if you don’t want to pin them together. Zip tie a small bag to a big item.
Shopping at Kids Consignment Sales
1.The racks and racks of clothes can get overwhelming. Figure out the size you’re looking for and stick to that.
Have a plan when you go in. Know what sizes you’re looking for and what items you are looking for. Each sale usually has things set up shopper friendly. Think ahead for which sizes you’ll need for certain seasons.
2. You can find some great deals on the last day of the sale since it’s usually half price.
Half price deals are the best! This is a great time to get clothes that your kid can use to play out in the mud. It’s no big deal if you get holes in them because it was only a dollar!
3. Search the book bins…especially on half price day!
There’s an overwhelming amount of books that are put into these sales. Cheap books are the best because they still provide the same story for half the price!
4. Usually, the big ticket items go the first day. If you’re a seller, you get to get in for the preview sale.
Outdoor play items and any of the popular items will go in the first few days the sale is open! Try to go the first day, or if you’re a seller, go to the preview sale! You’ll get in early and have the first chance to look through everything!
Bonus if you volunteer and help set up the items! You can’t set items aside for yourself, but during the preview sale, you’ll know it’s there and you can head directly to the item to claim it as your own!
5. Sign up for some of the prime volunteer shifts, you may get some free “sale bucks” to spend at the sale.
Since I volunteered for certain shifts, I received sale bucks to use towards my purchases. Not all sales may have this, but if they do, take advantage of this.
You may even have your seller fee reduced by volunteering for shifts!
6. Make sure to inspect the clothes closely for any missed stains or missing buttons during their inspection.
Make sure the items you buy don’t have any stains. Even though all the items are inspected, stains can be missed, or they don’t look closely enough to see a missing button.
You don’t want to come home, inspect your items and find out a dress you bought has a stain on the back!
7. Also, inspect the toys before buying.
Same idea as the clothes, make sure the toys work properly, and a wheel isn’t slightly broken that the volunteer might have missed.
8. Try to go without your kids, it’ll make it so much easier to shop because it gets busy!
The checkout lines get LONG during prime shopping times. It also takes awhile to go through all the clothes. It makes it easier for you to browse all the items when you don’t have to worry about keeping track of your kid(s).
9. Bring a cart, wagon, laundry basket…anything big and easy to carry/push if you’re planning on purchasing a lot.
This is a mistake I’ve made, or maybe not because it kept me from buying more than I could carry! They do offer big bags (think those big blue IKEA shopping bags) to put the items in
I see plenty of people bringing in a wagon to put all their items in, though! I always thought that was a great idea to make it easier, as I was carrying my huge bag full of clothes!
10. If you want a big ticket item, search for the tag that you can rip off so you “claim” it and go about your shopping. Or you can bring it to the “hold” area and continue shopping. Just make sure you get that tag so someone else doesn’t snatch it up before you get to the checkout to ask about the item.
My first time shopping at these sales, I didn’t realize you needed to pull off the big ticket tag so I was carrying around this item while shopping. Not fun! If the tag is still there, it’s yours to claim, if the tag isn’t there anymore, someone else has claimed it.
If you want to have a successful sale, use these tips and you’ll do great! Don’t be scared away by the high percentage commission the sale takes or the amount of work that seems daunting to complete to get ready for the sale.
Plan ahead, organize and get tagging. Once you get the hang of things and have a sale under your belt, it’ll be a cinch.
Wondering if there’s a sale near you? Check out Kids Consignment Sales to find one near you!
Are there any other tips or tricks you have for kids consignment sales?