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Thread: Any Members Buying Storage Units?

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  1. #1
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    Any Members Buying Storage Units?

    I've been doing the pallet thing....this area is flooded with people doing the same. If I set up at the Flea market? There are at least 3 or 4 people or more at any of the local flea markets(within 3 hours) that have the same stuff. The pallets aren't cheap either, anywhere from $350 to $700 plus Tax. The first few we bought right after Christmas were great! We killed it, and made a lot of money, but the further away from Christmas and the stores getting good returns or clearing out Christmas stock? They got really hard to even break even on them. Ebay is flooded with the same type of items which also drives the prices down. Most of what we got was Walmart returns, I also got target and some other stores but the products are so junky now a days that it's a hard sell.

    The past couple of weeks I've been set up beside a guy that buys storage units. He is the busiest spot at the fleamarket. It's all the dollar junk!!! But it sells!! He cleans nothing up, throws it in tubs, and sells cheap!! After a couple weeks of taking it around, he dumps it all super cheap or to a goodwill and grabs stuff from other units. After watching this I've noticed that he's making money!! He can sell more dollar junk/trash than I can sell brand new at 70% off.

    So....I'm thinking of doing a few units using his model. Buy it, pick the best for Ebay or auction, throw everything else in tubs and take dollar bills over trying to get $20's and $50's. Also, I could do the same thing, set up right beside him, and we would both have different items. He spent a lot of time on Saturday explaining how he did it, and it's working for him. He told me to unload the pallet stuff and start with storage units. I agree!! This pallets stuff is good if you have a lot of family and friends, you can save everyone a buck and make a little cash, but once everyone has everything from sweepers to coffeemakers there is only so much anyone needs. haha

    Anyone, have any experience in storage units, Good or bad, I'd like to hear the problems and success stories. I'm trying to work my way back into coins and jewelry, but for now I need something cheaper to work with to build up to that again. And this area doesn't spend much more than a few bucks at the fleamarket, not like the good areas where $50's and $100's are easy.
    Last edited by Nitric; Oct 16, 2018 at 11:27 PM.
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  2. #2
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    Hey Nitric. I did this as a "hobby" before "Storage Wars" came out on t.v.. Money was ok, nothing to get rich from because our area of the country did not have high end paintings, jewelry, or antiques. Pretty much just everyday common things. After "Storage Wars" hit the airwaves, everybody and their brother started hitting these and, being inexperienced, just drove the prices up like mad. I had also attended some auto auctions and flipped some cars, but just like the storage units, it too filled with inexperienced bidders who drove up the prices because they did NOT realize that they were bidding against themselves. How can that happen you might ask, they signal a "bid" and of course the auctioneer then asks for a higher bid. Without thinking, the person who had just signaled a bid hears the auctioneer and thinks his bid was beat and so he raises it again, ( so, he is bidding against himself ). The auctioneer doesn't care because he gets a percentage of what is sold. It is not like t.v.. A lot of junk. Mattresses, old scurvy couches, 1970's and 80's televisions. All this eats into the profit because you are liable for it and have to pay to have it hauled to the junkyard. Watching t.v. and seeing them find valuable jewelry, firearms, paintings, an original copy of Declaration of Independence, Tiffany lamps, and money are almost unheard of. If you are in an area with history, there may be some potential, but you have to have all your ducks in a row. When I first started, it was fun and since it was like a hobby I just went with the flow and enjoyed it. After I started to turn it into my daytime job, the bottom line began to matter and it made the job tougher. If you are located in an area rich with history, have access to lots of flea markets and Antique stores, you may do good. If you go this route, it is a form of Christmas because you don't know the extent of your new possessions until you open the boxes.
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  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Simon1 View Post
    Hey Nitric. I did this as a "hobby" before "Storage Wars" came out on t.v.. Money was ok, nothing to get rich from because our area of the country did not have high end paintings, jewelry, or antiques. Pretty much just everyday common things. After "Storage Wars" hit the airwaves, everybody and their brother started hitting these and, being inexperienced, just drove the prices up like mad. I had also attended some auto auctions and flipped some cars, but just like the storage units, it too filled with inexperienced bidders who drove up the prices because they did NOT realize that they were bidding against themselves. How can that happen you might ask, they signal a "bid" and of course the auctioneer then asks for a higher bid. Without thinking, the person who had just signaled a bid hears the auctioneer and thinks his bid was beat and so he raises it again, ( so, he is bidding against himself ). The auctioneer doesn't care because he gets a percentage of what is sold. It is not like t.v.. A lot of junk. Mattresses, old scurvy couches, 1970's and 80's televisions. All this eats into the profit because you are liable for it and have to pay to have it hauled to the junkyard. Watching t.v. and seeing them find valuable jewelry, firearms, paintings, an original copy of Declaration of Independence, Tiffany lamps, and money are almost unheard of. If you are in an area with history, there may be some potential, but you have to have all your ducks in a row. When I first started, it was fun and since it was like a hobby I just went with the flow and enjoyed it. After I started to turn it into my daytime job, the bottom line began to matter and it made the job tougher. If you are located in an area rich with history, have access to lots of flea markets and Antique stores, you may do good. If you go this route, it is a form of Christmas because you don't know the extent of your new possessions until you open the boxes.

    Thank you!!

    I understand it's not like TV, what I'm looking for is cheap bulk household items and clothes. If anything valuable shows up it's a bonus. I do have a trailer and a dump right up the street(about 8 miles). I'm not looking forward to the nasties, couches,mattress's etc.. I actually don't want antiques, I have no real outlet for them unless small items. What is selling locally at these flea markets is dirt cheap household items and clothes. Seems like the low priced junk is easier to sell here than anything good. Good stuff sells!! If you price it as junk. haha..

    I guess I just need to go to a few auctions and just sit back and watch. I went to some a few years back but that was when storage wars was popular, we didn't buy a thing, some of those units were going as high as a grand.

    With what I'm seeing with the guy I was watching was cheap volume. And it seems like the disorganized, uncleaned junk was like a treasure hunt for people. I could not believe the people digging through that junk and handing him money all day long. Heck, Sat. We were there real early setting up, there were people standing there waiting for him to pull in.

    I'm just reaching...Right now because of how things are(my situation) I have to find something that is very flexible, I have to work my hours. So...I have no clue what to try next. I have to be able to watch my Son pretty much 24hrs a day along with some other things. I need to find something that he can be with me through all the process's. I just hate to try this and end up even further in the hole.haha I don't even expect to strike it rich, just $400 a week profit or more and I'll work it into something. Right now no matter how I work it we are only doing about $300 a weekend at the most, but the cost of the items is too high, we hit a wall with what we can actually get for the stuff consistently. That's in the negatives because it cost about $60 bucks on average to set up(figuring gas and a little for coffee and things like that) and we are pretty much giving product away to just turn money. The pallet stuff is too much for the buyers. There is interest, just no money in these area's along with too many people doing it that have the exact same items for sale.

    I want to sell to the guy that waits for the last dime, I don't want to be the guy waiting on the last dime.
    Last edited by Nitric; Oct 17, 2018 at 01:26 AM.
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  4. #4
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    Sounds like you are set up for disposing of the junk with your own equipment, as you said, watch it a few times and then put your feet in. It should work with having your son there with you I would think. May find a go-cart or mini bike !
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  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Simon1 View Post
    Sounds like you are set up for disposing of the junk with your own equipment, as you said, watch it a few times and then put your feet in. It should work with having your son there with you I would think. May find a go-cart or mini bike !
    My wife and I thought about even trying a cleaning service for offices.....But again..this area is flooded with people that will do that type of work for next to nothing. We did a daycare a couple years ago, it took us most of the day, by the time you got done cleaning everything the way it should be. It paid $50 bucks. haha So? 2 of us at 4 to 5 hours? That didn't really work out.

    I do a little on Ebay, but eventually I'll run out of stuff, I'm selling things off that I collected for years. So, I need to start watching for the next step.

    My Son cracks me up...He loves people. So he says "HI" to everyone he sees. He gets ticked if they don't respond, he says it louder and louder until he's yelling and they are a half a block away. hahaha
    Last edited by Nitric; Oct 17, 2018 at 01:50 AM.
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  6. #6
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    Hey Nitric, I don't know what area you're in....I'm in between the country and city...So this works if you are somewhere like that.

    I'd go to auctions in the country and buy really nice family antique heirloom furniture...even old nice Iceboxes. I'd then bring it to the city and sell. I'd do 4wheelers too, lawn tractors, dirt bikes...Anything that was so common in the country sold dirt cheap there because everyone had the same stuff...it sold like crazy in the city. I'd do the storage auctions in the country...One time there were 5, New In Crates JD Turf Lawn Tractors. $200. Nothing else in there. I never bought smaller than hump back trunks.

    If you do that, get a list of the owners and check them out first... find out if there was a death or divorce. Find out if they had anything or not...Where they lived or live. You don't wanna get a bunch of clothes.

    I have never bought storage units in the city.

    I also started watching foreclosures after seeing the Sheriffs deputies hauling all of a family's possessions out to the edge of the yard and seeing folks loading up good stuff and throwing papers, degrees, birth and death certificates insurance..all important papers to the side. I stopped and collected that stuff and contacted them to return it. I've never taken anything from these things except paperwork and pictures to return to the people, but others make a living out of finding out when the eviction date is and being there to get everything they can to sell or scrap. They have trucks and trailers along with several people to help. One family I see do this even bought an older Uhaul truck that they pull a trailer behind.

    See if the cities close to you have a once a year Big Item Pick Up Weekend. Where I live they split it up among zip codes so it's 3-4 times a year. That's Fun..Especially in areas where they throw out great stuff that's easy to sell...I've put out good tables, mowers and furniture..every year people are waiting to see what's coming out and one family carries it from my shop to their trailer! lol! I just open the door and point. You do meet nice folks, whether your loading or unloading.

    Since you have a trailer, you might advertise on CL or whatever is around you to pick up scrap metal and batteries..That can give you some good, quick cash I've heard from the people that we deal with...Back in the mid 80's we started dealing with these folks and they have a Very lucrative business now of buying scrap metal...tools, wheels, electronics etc along with every kind of metal imaginable. Scrappers just bring their finds to them.

    Good Luck...I hope you find something that will bring in extra cash!

    Simon is right...If you find older name brand mini bikes cheap, that aren't locked up.. they go high in the city and for RV'rs. 125cc and lower.

    Kace
    Last edited by Kace; Oct 17, 2018 at 02:01 AM.
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  7. #7
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    My sister and brother-in- law bought a cleaning service years ago and hired people to do the work while they kept their day time jobs. They are about to retire and rely on the cleaning service which has become a huge financial success. They managed the bookwork and schedules during the evenings. But again, they started this years ago as a side job and wasn't relying on it as the sole source of income. It is now at the point that it is. Not something I feel like I would want to do though. I am not keen on cleaning up after others. I sold antiques and collectables on E-Bay too for awhile. Made good profit off the stuff but the problem was I was not moving enough stuff to be profitable. This was another side job I had. I would have to buy two of something in order to make one complete. I felt I did great work, but as you pointed out, I might spend $ 100.00 and fix the item and sell it for $ 250.00, BUT it took me a week to fix it so that was not cost effective, it was fun though and since I had my full time job I didn't really care, ( at that time ), how long it took.
    Your son sounds funny.
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  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kace View Post
    Hey Nitric, I don't know what area you're in....I'm in between the country and city...So this works if you are somewhere like that.

    I'd go to auctions in the country and buy really nice family antique heirloom furniture...even old nice Iceboxes. I'd then bring it to the city and sell. I'd do 4wheelers too, lawn tractors, dirt bikes...Anything that was so common in the country sold dirt cheap there because everyone had the same stuff...it sold like crazy in the city. I'd do the storage auctions in the country...One time there were 5, New In Crates JD Turf Lawn Tractors. $200. Nothing else in there. I never bought smaller than hump back trunks.

    If you do that, get a list of the owners and check them out first... find out if there was a death or divorce. Find out if they had anything or not...Where they lived or live. You don't wanna get a bunch of clothes.

    I have never bought storage units in the city.

    I also started watching foreclosures after seeing the Sheriffs deputies hauling all of a family's possessions out to the edge of the yard and seeing folks loading up good stuff and throwing papers, degrees, birth and death certificates insurance..all important papers to the side. I stopped and collected that stuff and contacted them to return it. I've never taken anything from these things except paperwork and pictures to return to the people, but others make a living out of finding out when the eviction date is and being there to get everything they can to sell or scrap. They have trucks and trailers along with several people to help. One family I see do this even bought an older Uhaul truck that they pull a trailer behind.

    See if the cities close to you have a once a year Big Item Pick Up Weekend. Where I live they split it up among zip codes so it's 3-4 times a year. That's Fun..Especially in areas where they throw out great stuff that's easy to sell...I've put out good tables, mowers and furniture..every year people are waiting to see what's coming out and one family carries it from my shop to their trailer! lol! I just open the door and point. You do meet nice folks, whether your loading or unloading.

    Since you have a trailer, you might advertise on CL or whatever is around you to pick up scrap metal and batteries..That can give you some good, quick cash I've heard from the people that we deal with...Back in the mid 80's we started dealing with these folks and they have a Very lucrative business now of buying scrap metal...tools, wheels, electronics etc along with every kind of metal imaginable. Scrappers just bring their finds to them.

    Good Luck...I hope you find something that will bring in extra cash!

    Simon is right...If you find older name brand mini bikes cheap, that aren't locked up.. they go high in the city and for RV'rs. 125cc and lower.

    Kace
    My biggest issue is finding what works for this area. If I moved back to Ohio I would have no problem dealing in anything I wanted. I knew the area well and who to sell what to. I'm use to dealing with middle and upper middle class, so to get a $100 or $200 out of a lot of people is real easy. Here? It's work to dig $25 out of someone for something they want. I really had no idea how different areas are as far as selling junk goes.

    I guess I'd be considered half in the country where I'm at. It's kind of in between. Most people here that have any kind of decent jobs drive an hour or more to work. There is some around here but the majority work somewhere else. Also, this is all new area. The antiques and old stuff doesn't have the collectors or the stuff that older areas have. The fleamarkets I was use to were a whole different world.

    Thanks for the ideas!! It gives me more to consider. In the past I've dealt in a little of anything and everything. Now, it's just finding what works for this area...Or where I have to go to juggle things.. I need contacts. That is the hardest thing to do when moving. That is also very different here than other places,....connecting with people. Very nice people but not the same connection. if that makes any sense at all.
    Last edited by Nitric; Oct 17, 2018 at 02:22 AM.
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  9. #9
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    Kace hit it on the head. Those RVers love mo-peds while most of the time they get over looked. Sounds like you found some really good units Kace. I am only like roughly 3 hours north of you. You have a nice area !
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  10. #10
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    Well Nitric, you spoke of having a dirt bike in your living room. You could open up a small engine repair shop: lawnmowers, riding mowers, dirt bikes ect. Your son will find interest in these at some point in his life so it would give you some father-son time. Just remember what I said a few weeks ago though, spend as much time and teach him while you can because one day the time will come that you realize you have taught him everything you know and he realizes he can't learn anymore from you. It will be a bittersweet moment.
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  11. #11
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    Do folks hunt where you are Nitric? If so, find some good deals on 4wheelers, clean them up and flip em. If you're mechanical on small engines, Simon is right...do the bikes, snow blowers, lawn mowers, chain saws, generators, weedeaters. Anything folks let sit with gas in them. Usually it's just a carburetor clean and maybe new jets or a float that are cheap.

    RV'rs spend big on the enduros or minis to put on the back of motor homes or toy haulers.

    Kace
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  12. #12
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    Kace

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    Quote Originally Posted by Simon1 View Post
    Kace hit it on the head. Those RVers love mo-peds while most of the time they get over looked. Sounds like you found some really good units Kace. I am only like roughly 3 hours north of you. You have a nice area !
    Yes they do and hunters will buy 4wheelers and maybe use them a season or two and sell them cheap.

    Where do you live Simon?

    Kace
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  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Simon1 View Post
    Well Nitric, you spoke of having a dirt bike in your living room. You could open up a small engine repair shop: lawnmowers, riding mowers, dirt bikes ect. Your son will find interest in these at some point in his life so it would give you some father-son time. Just remember what I said a few weeks ago though, spend as much time and teach him while you can because one day the time will come that you realize you have taught him everything you know and he realizes he can't learn anymore from you. It will be a bittersweet moment.
    And there is so much I want him to experience. He needs to spend more time with Grandpa too... If I make it to that time your speaking of? I'll be happy!! We never know how long we are here and that is a real fear of mine. We have a lot of fun!! He isn't deprived in the toy area...we don't even know where to put tthe stuff any more.
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  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kace View Post
    Yes they do and hunters will buy 4wheelers and maybe use them a season or two and sell them cheap.

    Where do you live Simon?

    Kace
    ========
    Trying to keep it a secret as Wrightdigger is stalking me She is playing that game of "Battle Ship" where she is trying to guess my home state. She is funny.
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  15. #15
    us
    Kace

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    Quote Originally Posted by Simon1 View Post
    ========
    Trying to keep it a secret as Wrightdigger is stalking me She is playing that game of "Battle Ship" where she is trying to guess my home state. She is funny.
    LOL! Gotcha! Now she has a new clue...

    Kace
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