puppy covered with blanket

Can your clutter make you rich?

How much of your clutter are you keeping because it’s worth a lot of money? I met with a vintage resaler this week because I’m always looking to find new options for you. Her pitch to me was that now all my clients would have a great resource for things they want to go to good homes.

Sounds great, right? You have valuable stuff hiding in the rafters, she wants to buy it, the stuff will go to other people who will really appreciate it. It’s a match made in Heaven!

Here’s the catch: the amount of money she’ll pay you for your vintage Pendleton blanket, which goes for around $200 online, is, wait for it… ‘probably $10.’ That’s right, you’ll be rewarded for holding onto it all these years with a crisp $10 bill.

Is that better than nothing, or have you got even better things to do with your time and space than hold onto clutter in the hopes of realizing pennies on the dollar?

Your time has value too

So much of what we hold onto is in service of a dream. Someone is going to pay good money for this treasure and that means you’re smart and savvy to hold onto it. This stuff is way too good to be dropped off at the thrift store, it’s worth something.

When you’re ready to examine this dream in the light of what people are willing to pay, are you okay to continue filling up your home with items that might get you this sort of low-stakes cash?

We all need money, but we need time, and energy and clear spaces to live and breathe in too. What do you value more, the potential of what you have or the reality of what an organized life will do for you?

Ready to try it out?

It’s hard to admit you might have made a mistake in holding onto stuff you thought was valuable. It’s harder to keep doing that now you’ve thought about it. On some level you know this already, which is why you haven’t made the effort to sell your treasures yet. You’re waiting for the market to get better, or to have the time to do this ‘properly’. Your heart knows this is a waste of time but you don’t want to let go of the dream that you’re sitting on a goldmine.

Make today you let go of that story and move on.

If you’re convinced I’m wrong, sell something today. List it on Craigslist, Facebook marketplace, or Nextdoor. Take a photo, give it a price and see what happens. If you price it right, someone will come get it. That price will be as disappointing as the vintage resalers’ offer – everyone wants a bargain, no one wants to pay full price.

Is this how you want to keep dealing with your clutter or are you ready to start being a generous benefactor, who sends the good stuff out to find its next home?

Need help deciding what’s treasure and what’s clutter? I can help.

by Lucy Kelly