Making Money on eBay During Retirement

eBay retirement
An eBay business fits perfectly with retirement. Getty Images

 Aging is a tough process. The body changes, family changes, friends come and go, and retirement looms on the horizon. The thought of retirement can be scary because it is a new chapter in your life and nobody ever thinks they have enough money for retirement. What if you have a long-term illness and medical insurance doesn't cover all your expenses? Retirement has a lot of unknowns, but the financial unknown can be worrisome.

eBay can help ease some of the financial burden of retirement.

Everything You Need Is Already in Your Home!

One of the advantages of selling on eBay is that people will buy just about anything for all kinds of reasons including:

  • Collectibles to add to their collection
  • Clothing and shoes to wear
  • Clothing and shoes for costumes, theater, or drama club
  • Broken items to repurpose
  • Replacement parts
  • Home decor
  • Vintage and obsolete items for decor or props
  • Food, health and beauty items, fragrances, and vitamins
  • Craft supplies and completed crafts
  • Tools and hardware
  • Gifts and brand new items still in the packaging

Odds are you have plenty of items in your home that can be sold on eBay. Why not learn how to sell on eBay and make money from some of the decades of accumulation in your home? This is one of the benefits of being near retirement age — you have 5-7 decades of items you have accumulated that can be sold on eBay.

Rather than leaving possessions, memorabilia, and junk to your grown children to sort through and deal with when you are at an advanced age or have passed on, sell those items now to pay for travel, a vacation home, or whatever you need. 

Your Junk May Be Valuable

Think about the accumulation in your attic, basement, garage, kitchen cabinets, and office.

More than likely, you have thousands of items that have value on eBay, you just don't know it. For example, old road maps, post cards, letters, address books, greeting cards, and auto manuals all have value on eBay. Some old post cards depicting defunct businesses, landmarks, vintage fashion, or old cars are worth hundreds of dollars on eBay

Maybe you you have some old letters send by someone in the military overseas, from an old flame, or from your a friend in another state. These old letters are considered history and sell on eBay. Collectors love them because the penmanship can be beautiful, the type of paper is no longer made, the stamps may still be affixed to the outside, and the postmark is interesting. Old handwritten love letters can sell on eBay for $25-$50 each. 

Old photographs are also good sellers. If you are nearing retirement age, you may have boxes full of old photos from the 50's, 60's, 70's, and 80's. Why are these of interest? Collectors love them because they often show the hairstyles, fashion trends, automobiles, home decor, and even product branding. Old photos can be used in home decor, decoupage, making funny greeting cards, restaurant or motel decor, or even interesting conversation pieces.

Like postcards, old photos are a part of history and tell a story. 

eBay Has Zero Start Up Costs

You really don't need anything to start an eBay business. Most people already have a computer or if not, have access to one at a library. And most people have a mobile phone to take photos of their items. Unlike other home businesses, there is no kit to buy, just start listing items for sale. Here is a helpful video that explains how to research an item's value on eBay. Start working through your home room by room and discover what treasures you have in your own home, right now, that will sell on eBay.

An eBay Business Can be Active or Set to Vacation Mode

If your retirement includes travel, eBay is a perfect fit. You can set your store on vacation mode so nothing sells while you are away. Or, you can increase your handling time to whatever you need, and ship orders when you return.

Extending handling time is the preferred method, because you will be making money while you are enjoying a vacation! When you get orders, you can remind your customers that you are away until a specific date and your item won't ship until then. If the buyer requests to cancel, it won't hurt your seller metrics.

eBay During Retirement is a Win-Win

When you have an eBay business during retirement, everyone wins. You can downsize and clean out your home a little bit at a time, and it won't be an overwhelming process for you at an advanced age, or if your grown children have to handle the task. Your items will go to those who want them, collectors or vintage enthusiasts who are thrilled to have them. Let's face it, the Gen X generation doesn't really want their parents old junk. Finally, you will have money in the bank to fund whatever you need without using credit or loans. Your home really is full of treasures — start digging and see what you find!