Originally Posted: 2005-10-04 1:39pm

favorite this post Tips for Selling Your Used Furniture on Craiglist

If you have to put “Like New” in quotations, it is not like new. Don’t bother. Just say how old it is and get on with it.

Nothing is stupider than seeing the same fucking plaid couch posted day after day with the subject heading screaming “BEAUTIFUL Couch GREAT CONDITION STUNNING”. First, this isn’t eBay, so stop posting as though you’re a toothless mouth-breather who’s barefoot and pregnant in Appalachia, selling your J.C. Penney-purchased promise ring with a 0.15 carat diamond on a used Mac connected through a modem. Second, plaid is not stunning, and will not be again for probably another 15 years.

Any furniture set that looks distinctly like it was made after 1970 is not “vintage.” Don’t fool yourself. Those big, watercolor-like splotchy fan patterns popular in 1980 have yet to make a comeback. Ditto smoked glass with those gold splatters and any veneer furniture with plastic inlays make to look like brass.

Keep in mind that, when selling furniture, you are selling something that you slept on, and probably had sex on at least twice. People aren’t buying your furniture because they want a piece of your history or the imprint of your naked buttocks; they are buying it because they can’t afford to go to Ethan Allen. The fact that your skins cells (and god knows what else) have been settling into the cushions for YEARS is not a strong selling point, but many of us are too poor to object. Just remember this when pricing your sofa.

Furniture, like cars, loses value fast. If you paid $3000 for a furniture set (sofa, chair, ottoman, and side table) 10 years ago, today it is worth about $150, if it’s in great condition. IKEA furniture loses value faster than any other kind of furniture in the world. The second you take that KIPPLAN sofa off the IKEA lot, it’s worth half of what it was, and it steadily depreciates after that until, about 5 years later, it's worth negative amounts of dollars. Do not try to sell it a year later for $20 off of the original price, even if you don’t have a cat and didn't smoke a pack a day sitting in your KIPPLAN. Leather sofas are the only ones that retaim value, but only certain sofas, and even then, it should never sell for more than half of what you paid for it.

So your cushion has a “stain” that “might come out” if “it gets washed”? Then fucking wash it, you asstard! Spray on a little Oxyclean and toss the goddamn slip cover in the washer! Is that difficult for you? Too much trouble? If it is, knock another $50 off the price. A stained sofa is 8 millions times less appealing than a clean one. I don’t care if you think it’s just Diet Coke – clean it the fuck up before you try to sell.

Post a pic and measurements. Don't expect anyone to want to buy something that they can't see.

If you’ve had to post your sofa more than three times, either you are doing something wrong, or nobody likes you. Try lowering the price, getting a better picture (don’t put the sofa on the front lawn for the picture, butthead, that is so ghetto, and who knows how long it’s been sitting there?), or simply acknowledge that it ain’t great. There’s something about Seattle that makes people think that mediocrity is not only worthwhile but valuable. An old couch is an old couch. If you treasure it so much that you have to charge $600 to part with it, maybe you should just keep it.

And this is for ANY category, not just furniture: the SECOND someone buys your item, take the goddamned ad down. This is not difficult. Do not go back into the ad and edit it to read "STUNNING PLAID SOFA WITH INLAID PLASTIC BRASS SOLD SOLD TODAY THANKS EVERYONE FOR YOUR INQUIRIES". Email the people who have emailed you about the sofa and tell them it sold. Thank them for their time and wish them luck. Just don't alter your fucking ad. Why, asks you, the mouth-breather? Well, because, the people who already emailed you aren't checking your ad like some kind of stock ticker to see what the status is. The only ones who are going to see the ad are the next round of people who are looking for a stunning plaid sofa. When they come across your ad, they are going to think,"Ooh, great, some jackass just had to let me know that I missed a chance at his used furniture". And then they will wish horrible things upon you, and eventually these things will come true.

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