I’m just going to go ahead and say it… reselling things for a profit is a bona fide art form!
You have to have knowledge of the market, an eye for quality and authenticity, and a willingness to take a gamble.
It’s not for everyone, but you can tip the odds of this gamble in your favour by choosing an item that is known to do well upon resale, and below, I’ve listed 32 of the best for turning a profit in the UK.
- 32 Best Things To Resell in the UK
- 1. Cots
- 2. Toys
- 3. Sofas & Chairs
- 4. Tables
- 5. Desks
- 6. Musical Instruments
- 7. Pianos
- 8. Books
- 9. Antiques
- 10. Jewellery
- 11. Games Consoles & Games
- 12. Vinyl Records
- 13. Wedding Dresses
- 14. Sporting Goods
- 15. Ink Cartridges
- 16. Guitar Pedals
- 17. CDs & DVDs
- 18. Electrical Appliances
- 19. Computers
- 20. Phones
- 21. Wood, Metal, Or Wicker Furniture
- 22. Bicycles
- 23. Gym Equipment
- 24. Brand-Name Clothes
- 25. Prams
- 26. Luxury Handbags
- 27. Shoes
- 28. Cookware
- 29. Old Board Games
- 30. Cars
- 31. Watches
- 32. Pokémon Cards
- Final Thoughts
32 Best Things To Resell in the UK
If your child is a little bigger now, you can pick up a tidy sum by selling their old cot.
You certainly won’t make a profit, as they rarely, if ever, appreciate in value, but as an expensive item when new, many parents-to-be are looking to pick one up second hand.
Don’t sweat it if you don’t get an immediate bite when you put your cot up for sale, as some prefer to buy new for their first child, but there will absolutely be swathes of people out there hoping for a bargain on a used cot in good condition.
The profit-potential of toys can be quite significant, but it depends on a couple of key factors.
Demand & Scarcity — If you have a rare toy on your hands, people will be willing to pay more for it.
Condition — Mint or unopened toys are the most valuable, and even if they’re not worth much money, impeccable condition will still be an incentive for buyers.
My advice is to, of course, sell toys from your own collection, but also to keep your peepers peeled for toys in charity shops that you might be able to sell for a profit.
3. Sofas & Chairs
If you’re into upcycling and you’re handy with a spot of home upholstery, then you can make a mint by giving down-and-out chairs and sofas a makeover and flipping them for a profit.
Facebook Marketplace is a great place to look for “flippable” seats, as is a good old-fashioned jumble sale.
Sometimes, if you’re willing to pick up and haul the furniture yourself, people will hand over their chairs and sofas for free, allowing you to make some big gains minus the fuel money used to collect.
Tables are another fantastic piece of furniture to upcycle and flip for a profit. You’ll often find affordable tables with potential in charity shops such as The British Heart Foundation furniture outlets.
Check your prospective tables for structural integrity, ensuring that it’s not on the wonk or any of the legs are wobbly and insecure.
If you find it’s got good bones, you could clean it, polish it, varnish it, or perhaps apply a lick of paint, then sell the beauty on for a lovely return!
Desks are one of those items you don’t realise are extortionately expensive until you head to a store or online to buy one.
Oftentimes we’ve blown our budget on the exciting stuff that will sit on the desk, such as laptops, printers, instruments, etc., and will then be on the lookout for a second-hand desk.
This is where you swoop in with some quality products that you bought low, rejuvenated, and then priced high (but still lower than new).
6. Musical Instruments
The idea of playing an instrument is incredibly enticing, but putting in the hours and actually learning how to play is a big commitment, one that many kids (and adults) find they’re not ready to make mere months after you fork out a small fortune to pick up their musical weapon of choice.
The good news is that as long as they’re in good condition, instruments hold their value pretty darn well, and as expensive items (even the “cheap” ones), you always have a wide audience when you list them for resale.
Okay, so I know pianos fit into the “musical instruments” umbrella category above, but I thought I’d give them their own spot due to their unique position in second-hand markets.
To put it bluntly, people just want these things gone, and they want them gone pronto.
You can pick up countless pianos for free across the UK, and if you’ve got an appropriate vehicle and some muscular friends to help you pick them up, you can sell them on for big profits, especially if you know how to distinguish the chaff from the wheat.
That dusty, dog-eared old copy of 101 Western Stories you accidentally pinched from your secondary school English class probably isn’t going to be your ticket to infinite riches, but rare editions of famous books may just well be.
What’s more, a single trip to Waterstones with a child or two can decimate a parent’s bank account, but if you have some beloved children’s books gathering dust, you can offer guardians an opportunity to nurture their kid’s imagination and education without having to remortgage their home.
Selling books in bundles for a low price is a smart way to find a buyer. They save money, you make money, kids get smarter… Everyone wins!
Granted, it can be difficult pulling in a profit by flipping antiques bought at antique shops, as they’re priced accurately, but there could be things already in your possession that you bought cheap a lifetime ago that have since become antiques.
So be sure to have a rifle through your attic and see what you’ve got lying around.
Jumble sales and older friends can also be valuable resources if you’re trying to get your paws on a few antiquities to flip.
Once you’ve acquired a few choice pieces, I’d recommend taking them to an appraiser to get a true valuation — They might be worth more than you thought!
Jewelry is one of the most active second-hand markets in the UK, and that’s likely because the bought-new market is flourishing.
According to precisionbusinessinsights.com, the UK jewelry market is sized at roughly 3500 million pounds with the scope to grow at an astounding CAGR (compound annual growth) of 13.1% over the next half-decade.
Popularity and rising prices in the general market lead to increased interest in the second-hand market, so now might be the time to start amassing some jewelry for resale.
11. Games Consoles & Games
Games consoles are a tricky affair. They’re ridiculously expensive when first released, then 5 to 10 years later, they seem to be worth very little, even when sold with a pile of games and accessories.
However, when a console survives long enough to reach vintage status, you can cash in on their rarity and nostalgia factor.
Don’t believe me? Check out this listing of a mint condition Star Wars Episode One Pod Racer Nintendo 64 bundle. Not exactly pocket change, is it?
Of course, waiting for that vintage label to fall into your lap takes time, but you can speed up some returns by hunting for some ready-vintage consoles online and selling them for more than you bought them for.
12. Vinyl Records
Audiophiles are willing to pay extortionate amounts of money for the original pressings of their favourite albums, and with the popularity of vinyl skyrocketing in the UK, now might be the absolute best time to part ways with those old vinyls of yours.
That crate of records you no longer have time to listen to might just be an untapped treasure trove of value, but don’t limit yourself to your private collection; search further afield and you could strike resale gold!
Just look at this list compiled by the experts over at Lovemoney.com. One of these records was picked up for a measly £1 at a second-hand shop and subsequently resold for an astonishing £10,000.
13. Wedding Dresses
Traditionally, much like baby gear, people prefer to buy or make new wedding dresses for their big day, but as prices of buying brand-new bridal gowns have risen significantly in recent years (and seem set to continue), the second-hand market has really opened up.
14. Sporting Goods
In the same way a child might flirt with the idea of playing a musical instrument only to find they don’t like it, they might also try their hands (or feet) at a number of different sports, each requiring its own set of expensive equipment and clothing.
But don’t let those light pockets weigh too heavily on you, as the second-hand sporting goods market is booming! Part-time athletes want a taste of the good stuff but not if they have to buy new.
Kit them out with your backlog of tennis rackets, football boots, and hockey sticks to raise their game, and to give you some extra disposable income.
15. Ink Cartridges
Is this the most glamorous option on the list? No. Is it an effective way to make money from resale? Absolutely. Believe it or not, even as most paper trails and correspondence get a digital makeover, printer ink is still in high demand.
Snatch some up at office wholesales then look for an appropriate online marketplace to unload them.
16. Guitar Pedals
Business is booming in the guitar pedal world, especially if you can get your hands on some boutique USA-made specimens.
Rising import fees, as well as supply chain shortages, have really cut the UK off from the big names in the States, so you can generate a significant amount of interest if you’re selling one of their pedals on a platform such as Reverb.
It doesn’t have to be a US pedal, though. Not long ago, I sourced a pedal from a builder in Germany who only makes a handful of pedals every three years or so, then sold it on Reverb for a profit.
In this situation, the item was simultaneously available (if you were willing to wait) and rare, establishing a pretty perfect foundation for resale.
But the golden ticket in terms of guitar pedals is a discontinued pedal from a revered brand. These can be purchased initially for a few hundred pounds, and may eventually reach values exceeding the £1K mark.
17. CDs & DVDs
Outdated entertainment disc formats aren’t the biggest earners in the world, but they do better than you might expect on the second-hand market.
For one thing, they’re becoming rarer each day, as are their corresponding devices.
What’s more, they’re still surprisingly expensive to buy new, so loads of people are on the hunt for their favourite films and albums for less.
You might have an entire crate load of these things just lying around taking up space, so it makes sense to see what people are willing to offer you for them.
18. Electrical Appliances
Electrical appliances sell like hot cakes, especially if they’re relatively new or otherwise yet to be superseded.
Computers used to be kind of like cars… you bring them home, and poof, there goes their value, but these days, they hold their value for the first 3 to 4 years incredibly well, especially if they’re in good condition and were quite pricey to begin with.
In fact, computer resale is such a breadwinner that big name brands such as Apple try to rope you into a trade-in for credit.
They hem you into their ecosystem by securing your purchase of a new device and they get your old one back that they can then “recycle” and generate even more profit.
Phones work in more or less the same way as computers do. Newer models in good nick can be sold on for impressive figures, so it’s best to sell them independently than trade them in for credit on a new model.
That way, you’re pulling in 100% of the profit.
21. Wood, Metal, Or Wicker Furniture
These materials are equal parts robust and stylish, the perfect cocktail for some amazing upcycling.
Furniture of this type is often easy to restore or reimagine, and there will always be a gazillion people out there looking for stylish, interesting pieces to make their room positively pop!
Not long ago, my father-in-law bumped into someone dropping off a bike at the dump. It was a little bruised and battered, but he thought it had potential, asked the fella if he could have it, and took it home with him.
After a brief cleaning session and one replacement part, it was good as new, and he sold it on for £170.
Now, I know that it’s not technically a resale if you never actually bought it to begin with, but it’s something to keep in mind on your next trip to the dump.
Besides, after tripping over them in their garage one too many times, there are plenty of people that just want these contraptions off their hands and will let them go for a song.
23. Gym Equipment
People have good intentions when funnelling ridiculous sums of money into a home workout space, but, inevitably, most lose sight of their fitness goals a few months down the road, leaving the expensive equipment to gather cobwebs.
They may then sell it on for very little, giving us an opportunity to purchase, get ripped, then sell on for a profit — hooray!
The bigger workout machines tend to be more of an imposition on the original owner, so they might be offering a staggering discount just to get them out of their living space.
24. Brand-Name Clothes
Thanks to e-commerce platforms such as eBay and Vinted, branded clothing has become one of the most commonly bought and sold commodities in the country.
All you have to do is keep an eye out for some nice deals online or in charity shops, bump the price up a little, then sell the garments on.
Do bear in mind, however, that buying low at charity shops and selling high online is considered poor taste by some, so be prepared to take some flack if anyone cottons on to what you’re doing.
Prams these days are built to withstand the force of storms, all while keeping our children soundly asleep in their cushioned basket or seat, which is great, but the quality models go for crazy money new.
The good news is that as kids grow out of them so quickly, their service life far exceeds their usefulness, meaning they’re prime for resale.
Frazzled parents will often just want these old prams gone, and will list them for next to nothing on eBay or Facebook Marketplace.
If they’re in good condition, you can then flog them for a damn sight more.
26. Luxury Handbags
If you’ve got an eye for the real deal and can weed out fakes in your sleep, then luxury handbags may be a good focus for your reselling mission. You can often find them cheap at outlet stores or online.
There are a couple of tricks to making money from the resale of shoes. One is to follow that general golden rule of reselling… shop quality for cheap, then sell for more.
But my personal favourite is picking up limited releases and collaborations, waiting for stocks to bottom out, then reselling at a premium.
For instance, Dr. Martens did a hugely successful collab with the cartoon Adventure Time a few years back. I purchased the Beemo boots, and now they’re insanely valuable.
Honestly, you won’t find them anywhere new or second-hand, so I plan to list them shortly, blow everyone’s mind, and cash in, big time!
Pots, pans, coffee mugs, plates can all be purchased at low prices on the second-hand market, yet they have the potential to sell for quite a bit more if you target the right audience.
Vintage cookware is the big find, as it’s often sold cheap by an owner that doesn’t recognize its true value.
29. Old Board Games
You can often find vintage board games for a quid or two at jumble sales and charity shops, and as long as they’re in relatively good condition, you can sell them on for between £10 and £100 depending on the game.
You have to know what you’re doing to make money reselling cars.
You’ll need at least a basic understanding of mechanics and/or bodywork, as well as up-to-date knowledge of values of specific models, but if you’ve got these rudiments, you have the potential to make some serious money.
Reselling cars are sort of the options trading of the resale game as they lose so much value over time, so cars should never be your long position. You need to act relatively quickly to maximise your profits.
You might get lucky picking up some cars dirt cheap from those who were perhaps just going to sell for scrap anyway.
If you see any cars that seem to never move from their position in the driveway and have perhaps seen better days, why not give the owner’s front door a knock and make an offer?
When something goes awry with a watch, people would often rather avoid the hassle of seeking an expensive repair by selling it on for pennies, but a lot of the time, a quick DIY fix is all that’s needed.
If you can pull it off, you’ve got some prime wrist candy to flog for a killing!
32. Pokémon Cards
These trading cards were my childhood, and I’m sure they have at some point played a part in your life too.
Whether you were buying them for your kids, or you were that kid tugging at your parent’s sleeve in the hopes they’d buy you a pack, there was no escaping Poke-fever.
For many years, it was ubiquitous, and the shiny cards have only appreciated in value.
The problem is, it takes patience to make money on this kind of thing.
You have to wait for the right moment, but this is actually a great thing for us. Sellers get impatient and end up parting ways with their pride and joy cards of far less than they’re worth.
We snatch them up, then bide our time, waiting for value and demand to hit the sweet spot.
There you have it — It’ll take some smarts, some float cash, some gambles, and a bunch of research, but any one of the above-listed items could fetch you a mighty profit when resold.
So, choose your niche, stay vigilant, and you’re bound to find some golden ticket items to boost your reselling side hustle.