Jump to content

My One-Way Transition from Investor to Seller

Recommended Posts

Thanks for sharing and this is great for new investors to read. Know what you are getting into. I've seen people saying $5 profit is still profit, well, I wonder how much selling experience they have and whether they realize all the behind the scene costs, especially the time cost.

 

To OP, of course the lesson here is not to overextend before getting a hang on the selling part, but your case is also a bit special as the financial situation forced you to sell early before a lot of your sets 'mature'. Maybe you don't have to quit in the future but just be more selective and down scale, even with all the deals out there. Good luck!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Anyone can buy. Not many are good at selling. I would not call buying toys in the hopes of reselling them for a profit investing at all. As you have found out you have simply created a very low paying job for yourself, not even a small business. It would have been much better to buy everything on your credit card and keep your cash. Let the credit card bank take all the risk. Use your own money for judgment proof investments, use other peoples money to risk on building a small business. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I would not call buying toys in the hopes of reselling them for a profit investing at all.

 

I find that comment controversial, given that we are in the Investing Forum here.  If done properly, it is undeniably an investment.  We've had the heated debate on whether quick flipping is investment or not, but buy-and-hold of a Lego set is pretty much the same as buy-and-hold of a no-dividend stock.  It's investing.  Just look at the BrickPicker logo!

 

Your first point is great though. Anyone can buy. Not everyone can sell.

 

Thinking more about this though, I reckon I put a fair amount of time into tracking down the deals and picking them up from shops (Amazon being the exception).  I am saving that time now, so maybe I can reallocate it to the selling.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

thanks for sharing there's definitely an addiction process in buying new sets. I've got a lot invested into Legos but I'm trying to transition back into stocks. that being said I seem to make money quicker with Legos than with stocks

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

One trick to help streamline the selling is to buy a good label printer. Saves me a ton of time...also buying bulk lots of boxes is good too. Should be able to save you time in the shipping department! Good luck to you!

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I feel (some) of your pain.  I spent a heck of a lot more time last Oct-Nov-Dec packing and trudging to the post office than I thought I would.  I'd recommend going the Emazers route - he seems to have each set packed and labelled and ready to go as soon as he gets them (or at least that is what I've gleaned from some of his photos).  To that end, I've tried to spend a couple hours here and there organizing, packing and labeling so that I don't need to spend all my free time doing it this holiday season.  That being said, I have a lot of sets, and I'm not nearly done getting everything packed/stored.  I find that part of the 'job' the most boring.  Buying and hunting for deals is fun, listing isn't too bad once you've got a template, but packing kills me.  I also hate going to the post office if the weather is terrible or I'm just feeling too damn lazy.  Plus my local post office has tons of old people endlessly ahead of me in line. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

There is a good takeaway from this. It does take time and effort to sell. I think a fair amount of people are in for a somewhat rude awakening when they go to sell and they have never done it before. Much harder than hitting the sell button on a stock.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

There is a good takeaway from this. It does take time and effort to sell. I think a fair amount of people are in for a somewhat rude awakening when they go to sell and they have never done it before. Much harder than hitting the sell button on a stock.

Yes, a rude awakening for sure. I think it will do me good overall because I feel like this has broken the hoarder in me. I will be selling Lego and other things. When I'm done, I will have more space than ever and great selling skills and experience. :)

Sent from my iPhone using Brickpicker

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

One of the best pieces of advice I read on here when I first started buying was to sell a few sets, just to understand the process and work involved.  This is pretty key, unless you have sold stuff before, as it will show you the other components to selling that you mentioned, packing, listing, fees, etc.

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Gondorian, thanks for sharing.  LEGO reselling/investing/flipping is a grind.  In many cases, it's a nice way to subsidize one's income, but very few can make a decent living from it alone.  As asharerin  stated above, flipping certain types of sets amounts to a minimum wage job.  I like the comment about "an hour per set" is taken from your life.  Sounds about right.  Point is, make that set a worthwhile one.  Are you going to make $10 an hour or $100 with the same time invested?  Granted, to make $100 per hour, a more expensive set would have to have been bought and maybe more time/space holding onto that set to reach such levels, but it takes money to make money as they say.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Is sounds like we need a new thread about people addicted to buying lego (it probably already exists). I good test for my addiction will be the second half of this month and all of next month in which I have zero money for investing. Gondorian, I'm sorry to hear about your situation and the one way street you are on. I hope the selling goes well (and the home business).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest TabbyBoy

This is the sole reason why I'm offloading all my small/medium sets to concentrate on >

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You need to have a template set up. Take a look through some sold listings, find one you like, and copy the format. Then all you need is a few pictures and a weight. That shouldn't take more than a few minutes. Packing and labels shouldn't take all that long either. Hoard your boxes and shipping supplies when they come in.

 

 

I try to pick up a lot of a few sets, instead of a few of a lot of sets. Then you just do one listing and let it ride until they all sell.

 

 

I'm also constantly amazed by the number of sellers who waste time waiting in line at the post office. USPS offers free pickup. Schedule online, never leave the house. Done.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest TabbyBoy

Why did you buy the City Theme?  Sheesh.  Everyone knows that's not much of a grower. (I still bought some though!)  Super Heroes is where it's at.  And Lego Friends.

Mostly.....

Vehicles like Garbage Truck, Flatbed Truck & Cement Truck at -50% or less.

Fire stations, Fire Planes & Fire Boats at -60% or less

A year after EOL it's hard to recover purchase price so I'm done with this theme. However I'm keeping Town Square and Coast Guard sets for the long haul.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I can relate to what you write Gondorian. I also have spent alot of money (almost 18k) on lego the last six months. I have been selling a bit too and I made some profits (not even 1k). So not something to write home about. I have started a topic called "insecurities and doubts" some weeks ago cause I also was doubting if I was doing the right thing. I know constrain myself by not buying anymore everything like a chicken without a head.

 

Some things that I keep to mind are:

 

Yes, I am tempted to buy other 10 SSD's cause I know they will do good. I have only three of them and when going EOL I will loose money cause I did not buy more of them when I had the chance. But this thought is wrong. When the SSD goes EOL now. I will have three. And with this three I will make some profit. And then I am happy with that. I can miss some money but I am not Emazers. Also I have a family too, and a house to pay, etc.

 

I am very sorry to hear what happened to you. I really think it can happen to any of us. I hope maybe with Brick Classifieds you can unload a fair part of your investment without to much hastle. I would call to out to all the brickpickers in your area to help you whenever possible. Cause I also think we all have some influence on people's buying habits.

 

Good luck and I hope you can solve your problems. 

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

buy-and-hold of a Lego set is pretty much the same as buy-and-hold of a no-dividend stock.  It's investing.  Just look at the BrickPicker logo!

 

 

So you are telling me buying and reselling toys is pretty much the same as trading shares of Amazon or Google? I guess the brains trust was on vacation during that debate. Reselling toys carries tremendous risk that you are not exposed to when reselling shares in an S&P 500 company. I would have no problems investing my hard earned money in either Amazon or Google in my judgment proof retirement account but I would not invest a dime of that hard earned money in a reselling business - the return is simply not great enough to compensate for the risk assumed.

 

Other peoples money (especially banks) I have no problem "investing" in a resale operation. Just ask the OP if he would rather have $20k of Lego or $20k of Google shares right now.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

So you are telling me buying and reselling toys is pretty much the same as trading shares of Amazon or Google? I guess the brains trust was on vacation during that debate. Reselling toys carries tremendous risk that you are not exposed to when reselling shares in an S&P 500 company. I would have no problems investing my hard earned money in either Amazon or Google in my judgment proof retirement account but I would not invest a dime of that hard earned money in a reselling business - the return is simply not great enough to compensate for the risk assumed.

 

Other peoples money (especially banks) I have no problem "investing" in a resale operation. Just ask the OP if he would rather have $20k of Lego or $20k of Google shares right now.

 

You speak of the stock market as though it can't drop. I really hope you are careful. Speculative stocks are not safe.  Sure, the past year has been great and hindsight tells us all that shares in Apple would have been much smarter than investing in Lego since last July (it went from $400 to $650ish before the stock split) but you never know where the next crash is lurking.  This whole market has been talked up way beyond where it should be and it will come crashing down, but only when the big boys are already out.

 

I got into Lego because, to me, it felt safer than stocks.  I could not take the anxiety of being in the stock market, with the investment value so far out of my control.  I would watch the news every day, read MarketWatch.com, and my emotions would be aligned with whatever the market was doing that day.  It was hell.  Sure, it was great when I was winning, but surprises can come at any time.  And, like Lego, you only realise the gains when you are out.  You have to get out to confirm the win.  I got out with

  • Like 7

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Nothing seems to affect the stock market now. There is turmoil all over Eastern Europe and the Middle East...and not just your garden variety, but serious crap and the stock market just keeps on hitting new highs. Years ago, any serious world event would affect the markets. It just seems like a rigged market. As for LEGO investing, as the OP stated and many know, gains are nice, but the selling and shipping is a job.

Sent from my iPhone using Brickpicker

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

A little bit OT and I apologize but reading some of these posts where you guys are saying box it up before selling to ship, do you take pictures before sealing it up or use stock photos?  Because I hate stock photos, I want to know the condition of the box when I buy and see the ACTUAL product I am bidding on or buying.  Maybe I'm the exception and if you have 100 of the same set I guess forgetting about that and only using stock photos is worth the trade off of all the additional work of actual pictures of the set for sale.  Kind of a trade off, I think using stock photos pushes away some potential buyers...do you think the amount of time saved is worth the trade off?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...