NEW YORK CITY – If your spring cleaning has unearthed some things you could do without, there's surely someone in New York who can take it off your hands — possibly in exchange for cash.
Selling to individuals via sites like Craigslist or eBay is one way to earn money for clutter, but turning to businesses that specialize in what you’re selling increases your likelihood of selling to someone who offers a fair price. Additionally, New Yorkers who sell to local brick and mortar shops may receive compensation more quickly, save on shipping, and support small merchants in their neighborhoods.
Generally, one can opt to sell their items on consignment or by selling or trading with a vendor.
Shops accepting sales and trades will evaluate your goods and take their chosen items to resell. Many businesses offer a choice of compensation in cash or credit, and the credit offer is often higher.
Shops offering consignment will attempt to sell your items in exchange for a cut of the retail price. If you’re selling things via consignment, you’ll typically receive payment only if and when someone buys the goods.
Some stores only buy or trade items, some only put them on consignment, others do both. Merchants offering multiple selling choices may also extend a range of offers, so sellers should be sure to consider all their options.
Here are some places to start if you're looking to sell your used stuff in NYC.
The city is home to a bevy of sell/exchange shops catering to different brand levels. Beacon’s Closet (locations in Greenpoint, Park Slope, Bushwick and the West Village) buys vintage and contemporary clothing seven days a week until half an hour before closing time; appointments are not necessary and they’ll evaluate and compensate you (cash or credit) for your items within minutes, unless there's a line. Beacon's Closet says sellers can expect about $3-$10 in cash per item, sometimes more if an item is very valuable. They offer 35% in cash or 55% in credit of the total price they put on all the items they buy.
Buffalo Exchange, with locations in Astoria, Boerum Hill, East Village, and Chelsea, works similarly. They’ll offer cash or credit for stylish, gently-used clothing. They'll pay anywhere between $6 to $60 for a pair of jeans in good condition, for example.
On the Lower East Side, boutique The Dressing Room invites you to sip specialty cocktails at their built-in full bar while they evaluate your items for credit or cash. They consider clean, good-quality vintage and contemporary pieces of any label.
Designer-label fashionistas can find a good home for their garb through one of the city’s many consignment shops. Encore, an Upper East Side institution, has been giving high-end fashion pieces another go-around since 1954. They’ll consider your Chanel, Prada, Hermes, and other designer-label items if they're in season, in good condition and generally no more than a few years old. Appointments are recommended: call 212-879-2850. A partial list of brands they accept is available here.
OLD-SCHOOL MOVIES AND MUSIC
Have your old discs been gathering dust in your closet since the dawn of the digital era? West Village music mecca Academy Records & CDs will consider CDs, DVDs, Blu-Rays, and vinyl records for possible purchase for cash or credit. They pay roughly a third to half of the price they'll put on it to sell. Buying hours are 12 p.m. through 6 p.m., seven days a week. Reservations are not necessary, but sellers are asked to notify the store in advance of large drop-offs.
The appropriately-named Sell Electronics NYC offers quick cash for both working and damaged Apple and Samsung products plus cameras, watches, and more, as long as they’re not too out of date. Reservations are not required and sellers will receive an offer and cash payout within minutes. Instant estimated quotes are available online here.
VIDEO GAMES AND HARDWARE
East Village indie store Video Games New York virtually doubles as a video game museum, offering a full range of consoles from 1970s vintage to contemporary. Trade in your used games and hardware for something new, or just ask for cash. They're open seven days a week and generally offer payouts on the same day. Call to confirm that they're buying when you're planning on coming in: 212-539-1039.
JEWELRY AND GOLD
Feeling weighed down by all your baubles? Unload them in exchange for cash at Astoria's K&D Jewelry Gold Buyers. They've been in business for twenty years and promise top dollar on gold (all carats), diamonds, platinum, and silver, as well as paintings, antiques, and some electronics. Drop off your loot for a same-day evaluation or mail it in according to the instructions printed on their website. They don't charge an appraisal fee and registrations are not required. 10 a.m. to 8 p.m., Monday through Saturday.
You can also try Global Gold and Silver, which has a location on West 45th Street and another on 8819 3rd Avenue in Brooklyn.
MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS & GEAR
Rogue Music Store on West 30th Street offers cash, credit or consignment for “reasonably clean and functional” guitars, keyboards, pedals, recording equipment, and related items. Be sure to call or email them in advance of bringing items in. "People have been buying from us for thirty years," said John Kano, a musician and employee at the store. He added that sellers prefer the store to online merchants because they like the community it fosters.
You can also check out places like Rivington Guitars and Norm's Music.
Stand outside the Strand on 12th street near Broadway, and you’ll likely to see a line of people patiently lugging stacks of books. They’re not there to buy — they’re selling, to what may be the city’s most streamlined brick-and-mortar book-buying operation. The Strand purchases hardcover and paperback books as well as and unopened DVDs, CDs, and audiobooks. New and unmarked books are more likely to go in the “sell” pile, and hardcovers are usually worth a few more dollars than paperbacks. They’ll give you a decision within minutes and offer payout (cash or store credit) right away. Selling hours are Monday through Saturday from 9:30 a.m. to 6 p.m., no appointment necessary.
But the Strand isn't the only game in town: try Unnameable Books in Prospect Heights.
Do you know of any other good brick and mortar stores that accept used consumer goods for cash or trade? Let us know in the comments.