With the financial situation many people are facing in this difficult economy, storage unit auctions are becoming more common. And along with the increase in auctions, there also comes an increase in the number of people hoping to make a profit off of the hidden treasures that can be found inside. There is no reason why you can’t be one of those people, but if you want to be successful at it, you need to treat it like a business rather than a hobby.
First, realize the chance that you will strike it rich by uncovering some lost historical artifact is highly unlikely. The majority of the items you will run across are simply the unused cloths, gadgets, and furniture that someone else was unable to store in their own home. Also, you generally don’t get to go through the items before bidding. The extent of what you get to learn about the items is usually limited to what you can see from the open doorway.
Teaming up with an experienced partner is a good way to learn what an appropriate bid amount should be. Otherwise, you will need to learn how to quickly identify objects that should have a high resale value. Keep in mind that most auctions require cash payment at the time of the winning bid. Make sure to bring enough cash with you to avoid getting outbid by a small amount.
Now that you have won your first lot hopefully, you will be given only a day or two to empty the unit. You should have a plan in place to transport the material off site. Once you have the items in your possession you will be spending a lot of your time at flea markets, consignment stores, and online converting your purchases to profits. It is a good idea to have contacts lined up to help you sell your merchandise.
Before you can sell an item though, you need to establish its value. E-bay is an excellent resource for this. Just about anything you can imagine has been sold there and a quick search should give you a good idea of what you can ask for. In the spring and summer months, yard sales are also a good outlet to sell your products as well. The faster you sell your merchandise, the sooner you can have the money available to bid on your next unit, and the best way to make a living at this is to turn over a lot of merchandise.