About a mile from my parent’s house in central Ohio is a small 90s strip mall that remains entirely occupied, although newer and more “attractive” strip malls continue to be built around it. This success is the result of patronage by a series of resale franchises that run the spectrum of the resale gamut: Once Upon a Child, Plato’s Closet, New Uses General Store, and Play It Again Sports. For years I have visited these stores, most recently New Uses as I begin to acquire household goods in anticipation of my upcoming graduation from college.
Resale stores like these are a valuable stopgap in a consumer economy. By purchasing high quality used items from the local community, they provide incentive to recycle. The items in these stores are the creme de la creme of used. I’ve often found their purchasing standards so high that some items I bring in get turned away, meaning the Kidney Foundation and Salvation Army still get plenty of donations. Selling at far lower prices than name-brand retail, they encourage the same community to reuse the goods, adding a second-life to the cycle of cradle to grave without transit costs and minimal carbon emissions.
That resale stores succeed in so many subject areas is testament to a willingness to recycle when the opportunity is there. Everyone from 5 year old soccer players to notoriously picky teenagers to 50 year old househusbands shop at these stores. Many of the above titles are large franchises with locations all over North America. If any resale outlet is in your area, I encourage you to utilize it.
Have any noteworthy experiences (good or bad) with reselling? Let us know about them; my own experiences are far too narrow to be taken for granted 🙂