Baby Consignment

Written by Serena Berger
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One of the most expensive things about raising a baby is the high cost of clothes. This is made more frustrating to budget-conscious parents when they realize that they're buying clothes that will be worn for a very short time, since the baby will have outgrown them in no time at all. A very good way of handling the increasing costs of raising a baby is buying and selling used clothes on consignment. Consignment eliminates two of the biggest problems: the high cost of new clothes, and the piles of old and outgrown clothes that end up as hand-me-downs.

What Is Baby Consignment?
At its simplest, baby consignment is a way for people to join together to sell their used baby clothing, toys, equipment, and even maternity clothes. In many ways, you can think of consignment like a big garage sale--only nicer, cleaner, and with less hassle. Shopping consignment can get you store-quality merchandise that your kids will love, and for which you won't have to pay full retail prices. As a general rule, it's best to shop a few consignment sales or websites before you try to sell any of your outgrown things. This will allow you to get a feel for everything involved as well as the best way to present your own merchandise

You will find in shopping consignment that prices are higher than at the average garage sale, but that the merchandise is consistently of a quality that is worth your time and money. Most consignment places, be they stores or websites, have guidelines on how used is too used, and only "gently used" or "like-new" stuff gets put on the market. If you are looking for brand name baby apparel, it's usually best to buy complete outfits. If nothing else, these items will be easier to consign yourself later, if your baby has only worn them a few times.

If you decide to start selling some of your baby's old things on consignment, there are some things you should know. Items should be clean and in good shape--if you wouldn't give it to your sister's baby as a hand-me-down, don't sell it. If you are selling equipment like strollers or baby seats, the same rule applies: if they are broken or stained or several years out of date, they won't sell. Also remember that whatever site you use to list the items will take a percentage of the sale. How much they take depends on who you're dealing with. Just remember--it's their cut that pays for any advertising and marketing that generates your sales!

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