How to cash in on your kid's closet

If you have young children, chances are you have clothing that they can no longer wear. And chances are those clothes, as well as old shoes and toys, are taking up valuable space in your home.

That means you probably have cash -- and maybe quite a bit -- in your kid's closet.

Resale shops are offering parents with growing children money for their kids' used stuff.

Closets Fill up Fast

You know the drill. Your kids grow out of clothes almost as soon as you buy them.

With two young children, Lysha Broad knows all too well how quickly the clothes, the shoes and the toys pile up.

So when she wants less stuff, and more money, she heads to their closets.

Light on, basket in hand, Broad started digging through drawers, racks of clothes and piles of shoes to clear the clutter for cash.

"I took a toddler coat there and it wasn't in that great of condition and they gave me $9 for it," Broad said about a local resale shop.

Those dollars add up. Her biggest payout to date? She was paid $55 during one trip.

We Go Selling

So when Broad went on her next trip to sell clothes at the resale chain Once Upon a Child , we decided to accompany her.

Parents go in with baskets, and often with kids in tow, and fill out paperwork the first time they plan to sell clothes. Then store employees sort through your stuff, and tell you what they will buy.

If they don't want it, you can donate it to Goodwill or other places that help needy children.

What Sells Best

How do you make the most money? Name brands, according to the online resale site

The site says the best brands for earning top dollar are:

Baby Gap and Gap Kids
Oshkosh B'Gosh

Ralph Lauren and Tommy Hilfiger also sell well, but are not among the hottest brands right now for children's clothing.

All name brands do better than store brands, according to managers at Once Upon a Child, who told Broad "these are Crocs, so they would be worth more than if you go with the generic Croc -style shoe"

Another big ticket item: parenting equipment. Pack-and-plays, bouncers, and strollers, especially jogging strollers, are consignment gold.

What Not to Bring

But don't bring car seats, most stores won't take them for liability reasons.

Pajamas, slippers and snap-up baby pants aren't popular either.

Looks matter, too. Taking the time to wipe off those shoes and fold the clothes, can earn more money, according to Thred-up.
Timing matters too. Believe it or not, by late spring, stores are already making a push to get in fall clothes.

So how did Broad do during our trip to the resale shop?

"You had some great stuff, and I'd like to offer you $37.48," the clerk told her.

She made $37 for a single laundry basket of kid's clothes she wasn't going to use anymore, not too bad.

"I did better than I thought I would actually," Broad said.

Finally, consider consignment shops, like The Snooty Fox, or the online consignment shop,

They often pay more, though you have to check back frequently to see what has sold, and you won't get cash immediately.

So before you trash your kids' old stuff, take some time to look around because there could be cash in that closet.

That way you don't waste your money.

Don't Waste Your Money is a registered trademark of the EW Scripps Co.

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