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It’s that bit of Christmas we all dread – the festivities are over, we are full up to the brim of turkey and chocolates (although not necessarily at the same time) and we have a pile of unwanted Christmas presents, and in fact, don’t know why anyone thought we would want them in the first place!

Here’s my top tips to get rid of those gifts and give your finances a quick boost before the new year gets going!

DVDs, CDs, books and games

If you have DVDs, CDs, books and games etc, there are loads of apps which you can download on to your phone and then use the camera on your device to scan the barcode. It will then give you a price for your item.

My favourite is Ziffit. You need to trade either a minimum of 10 items, or a total of £5 or more. Some of the items might only be worth a few pence but it soon adds up. It can be a good time to clear out anything you have at home that you don’t need or want any more if you need to make up the numbers. Once you’ve processed your items through the app, you print off a label that will be emailed to you, and drop your (well packaged) box of items to a local Collect Plus retailer.

Music Magpie is another one of my favourites. They buy pretty much the same as Ziffit, but their prices do vary so it’s worth checking your items on there too.

We Buy Books buy books, but they also buy DVDs, CDs and games etc and are usually worth comparing against!


Much as some people feel that selling on eBay is a bit of a faff, I’ve come to realise though that the audience on eBay is far bigger than you are going to find with any other method and therefore increases the chance of a sale, as well as the price that may get. The introduction of their Global Shipping programme has really helped too. You can select an option in your listing and then international buyers can purchase the item, but you only have to ship to a UK address. The buyer pays the international supplement and eBay do the rest.

Top tips for selling on eBay

  • Start the item(s) to start on a Thursday evening and run for 10 days. Research shows that auctions that finish on Sunday evenings go for a higher price than at other times of the week. If necessary, use your 20 free scheduled auctions to start them at an appropriate time.
  • Take as many detailed pictures as possible – and use as many as you can for free in your listing.
  • Provide a really detailed description, including any damage or details that a buyer may query. Take photos if necessary.
  • Weigh your item before you list it. This will help with your postage. I personally use My Hermes as their pricing is really good. It is easy to work out your postage as the sizes and weight guidelines are very clear. It is also easier for me to post things as you can drop your items to many local shops that are open much longer hours than the post office.
  • Try and respond to any questions potential buyers may send you during the listing promptly. This will encourage them to have faith in you and are more likely to bid on your item.

Selling in person

There are so many ways of selling face to face. Whether you use a local selling group or the marketplace feature in Facebook, or other selling apps such as Gumtree and Shpock, there will be an audience out there for you. Some companies or employers have an intranet with a buy and selling board – so remember to check that out too.

Top tips for selling face to face

  • Keep all communication through the website or app, and only exchange contact numbers in case there is an issue once everything is agreed.
  • Unless you are selling something large like furniture etc, agree a location that is near to where you live but not your actual address. Much as the majority of people I’ve sold things to online have been lovely, for me personally it is always a worry when a sale goes wrong and they know where I live.
  • Make sure the item(s) is as described – preferably clean and well packaged too. If an item is damaged or stained, be sure to state that in the description.
  • Ask them to ensure they have the correct money, so you don’t need to worry about finding or providing change.
  • Never agree to take payment via bank transfer or PayPal as these can easily be reversed and you can lose out.

What if you’ve tried everything?!

You could find an indoor, year round car boot sale (or just wait for the weather to improve) and there’s always the option of regifting the item, as long as you remember who gave it to you and you don’t give it back to them. You could also donate the item to a charity or thrift store!

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