People cleaning out their closets sometimes find themselves overwhelmed by what to do with their old clothes. While most of them are just going to take it on over to the local Goodwill or throw their clothes out, you can look through your closet carefully to see what you can make some cash from.
Today’s market not only looks for the best deals, but it also has been giving increasing value to second-hand items, especially clothing. While most items will be a few extra bucks in your pocket, you never know if there’s a vintage piece that may be worth more than you originally bought or found it for!
How do I Start Cleaning Out my Closet?
When cleaning out clothes, accessories, and shoes in your closet, you should start by emptying out one section at a time. After that, follow these simple steps:
- Separate items into piles based on condition or cleaning needs (this may be a personal preference, but I separate them into three categories: “clean/ok,” “needs cleaning,” and “unwearable”). Items you want to sell should be washed to achieve optimal selling price and making them look newer.
- Use introspection and ask yourself if you wore the item at all or enjoyed wearing the item. If not, put it to the side and eventually sell it.
- Think of the current styles and trends. If you’re cleaning out clothes from previous seasons or years ago that were never worn (and haven’t been worn recently), then don’t hesitate to get rid of them! Certain older clothes and brands will be worth more money than others.
- Clean up and return your clothes, shoes, and accessories to your closet and place the clothes you are going to sell in a contractor bag or a bin.
If you don’t have a lot of time available in one sitting, consider cleaning out your closet a little at a time. While cleaning out your closet in one sitting is definitely doable and will save you some time, cleaning out an item here and there over a few weeks or months will ensure that all your items are carefully examined and organized.
How Much Money can you get From Plato's Closet?
Plato’s Closet is a popular second-hand store where you can sell your old clothes, shoes, and accessories and also buy new-to-you items. By cleaning out your closet, not only will you be able to obtain cash from old clothing, but you can also earn reward points at the store for buying or selling your clothes there. Sales at Plato’s Closet are also cash only.
To ensure Plato’s Closet gives you the full value of what you’re selling, wash or dry-clean any clothes with visible stains before putting them in a bag for donation. As a general rule, Plato’s Closet will give you about 30-40% of the retail price.
The most valuable clothing items are designer clothes, like Chanel, Gucci, and Louis Vuitton. If you happen to own a vintage piece of clothing from one of those brands or even just an original garment from any designer brand, it might be worthwhile cleaning out that closet after all. Ensure you have their authenticity or original tags with you when you bring them to sell.
How Much Will Plato's Closet Give me for Jeans?
Different brands and styles carry different prices at Plato’s Closet, so what the store gives you for your clothes may vary. Generally, they pay 30-40% of the retail price, but it also depends on the jeans’ condition. Based on retail prices of popular jeans, here is what you’re expected to get for them:
|Seven For All Mankind Jeans||$30-$40|
|J Brand Jeans||$10-$15|
If you have other brand jeans that are not listed, that is fine. Remember, it all depends on the demand for your particular clothes and the quality of the clothes you’re bringing in to sell.
7 Ways to Make Money from Cleaning out Your Closet
If you don’t have a Plato’s Closet near you, or you have clothes that they didn’t accept, don’t worry! You still have plenty of opportunities to make money cleaning out your closet. Some of the most popular ways to make money cleaning out your closet are:
- Selling your clothes online
- Sell your clothes on an app
- Have a garage sale
- Sell your items at a consignment store
- Donate your items for a tax write-off
- Swap your clothes
- Rent your clothes
Following these options will guarantee you will have a bit more money in your wallet and more space in your closet.
1. Sell Out Your Closet Online
eBay and Amazon can be great ways to make money cleaning out your closet with their used marketplace services. They sell new clothing for very affordable prices as well, so you could snag some deals there too. Always make sure the clothing you’re selling is clean and in good condition, so you get good reviews.
Some options aren’t strictly online to sell your clothes, so you don’t have to worry about shipping. You can sell your clothes on Craigslist or the Facebook Marketplace. If you choose these options, ensure you meet up in a public place and have someone with you for optimal safety.
2. Sell Your Clothes Using an App
If selling your clothes on eBay or Amazon doesn’t sound appealing, you can also sell the stuff in your closet on an app. Pretty much anyone can set up an account and list their items for sale. The main benefit of using an app is that it’s quick and easy to list your items, and you don’t have to deal with shipping things out. Some of the most popular apps to sell your clothes on are:
- Poshmark: You can sell on Poshmark and join a community of sellers and buyers. They offer protected payments, expedited shipping, and product authentication.
- Letgo: You can sell the things in your closet at a fixed price just by taking a picture of them and listing them. You can choose to ship your items or meet up with the buyer if they are local.
- Mercari: You can have a fixed price or auction off your items, and Mercari takes care of shipping as well. There are no listing fees either, whether you’re using an auction or fixed price.
Just remember that it is important to have ways to make your outfits look more expensive before posting them on online markets.
3. Have a Garage Sale
Having a garage sale is the most traditional way of cleaning out your closet, and it can be a whole lot of fun. Make sure you advertise your garage sale well in advance and have plenty of stuff to offer for people to buy. You’ll probably want to plan this with family or friends – splitting up cleaning and permit costs depending on where you live will help.
An additional benefit of having a garage sale is that you don’t have just to limit what you’re selling to what was in your closet. Take the season to clean through your home and find items that you’re willing to sell for a quick buck.
For example, you can do a quick cleaning round through your basement and sell off any old or unused items in it. You can go through any room in your house, the kitchen, bathroom, living room, and other bedrooms to find things to sell, and you won’t have to worry about shipping!
4. Sell Your Items at a Consignment Store or a Thrift Shop
If you don’t have a Plato’s Closet in your area, chances are there’s another consignment shop or thrift store around for you to sell your clothes, shoes, and accessories to.
Consignment and thrift shops sometimes buy clothes directly from people who want to sell them. You should prepare your items for the consignment or thrift store just as you’d prepare your clothes for Plato’s Closet.
It’s a good way of making money and giving someone something they might find useful. You can take it a step further and see if your neighbors or friends need their closets cleaned so you can make some extra cash.
Keep in mind that different stores and organizations will offer different prices for items. Also, remember that you won’t get full price for something if it is new and has a price tag on it.
5. Donate Clothes to Charity
Charities often need clothes to pass on to others in need – cleaning out your closet is the perfect time to get rid of stuff that doesn’t fit anymore or things that are trendy but haven’t gone completely out of style.
Donating your clothes to a charity won’t directly give you cash in your pocket, but it will give you a tax write-off. You’ll also be able to enjoy the satisfaction of cleaning out your closet without having to think about what to do with all those clothes. Some ideas for charities that you can donate your clothes to are:
- A local community center
- A veteran’s center or store
- A local cancer rehabilitation program
- Salvation Army or Goodwill
If your goal is to get a tax deduction from donating your clothes, call the organization ahead of time to ensure they will be able to provide the tax write-off for you.
6. Swap Your Clothes
Just like donating your clothes to charity, swapping your clothes won’t directly put money in your pocket, but it will help you save. You can get rid of things you no longer wear that someone else will find valuable while getting something that you are more likely to wear.
There are online groups that exist solely for the purpose of swapping clothes – simply google “clothing swap,” and you will find various options available to you. But, you may also be able to find local swaps either through social networking (Facebook groups or the like) or by asking your personal network.
You can even begin your own clothing swap with friends, family members, and coworkers. You can arrange meetups or groups to post your clothes on to see who is willing to exchange their clothes.
7. Rent Your Clothes Out
Recently, many people with a lot of clothes and not enough space have been renting out their clothing to make money. There are many online communities and apps you can use, such as Rent My Wardrobe, for you to rent your clothes.
There are many benefits to renting your clothes, such as; you don’t have to give up your clothes entirely. You also can continuously make money off of your clothes. However, a major drawback of renting your clothes and shoes out is that you have to clean your clothes and run the risk of them being damaged upon return.
And now that you’ve cleaned out your closet, you may want to check out five tips for organizing your closet.
The bottom line is not to throw anything out that you may be able to sell or donate. You never know what will end up in your closet at the next round of cleaning, and it’s much better for you financially if you don’t have to buy a new item again. Just remember these tips when going through your clothes this time around!
(If you are looking for more ways to make money through clothes, you can make money being a fashion blogger.)