Tips for Selling on Kijiji

One of my goals for the summer/fall was to clear out excess stuff. We’ve lived in this house for six years and stuff just seems to accumulate. Now some of it is baby stuff. We’re still on the fence about a second baby, so I don’t want to get rid of that stuff yet. But there’s lots of stuff that both Husband and I have from our lives before we met each other. Some of it is still in boxes in the basement…. definitely time for that stuff to go. Anyways, all this to tell you that I’ve been selling things on Kijiji again. Mostly excess yarn this time but also a used aluminum screen door and some candle holders. In the past I’ve sold shoes, baby items, Nightmare Before Christmas memorabilia and recently, my husband sold a car. I love Kijiji but it can be a weird and scary place. So here’s some tips to get you going if you want to sell using Kijiji.

  1. Post clear pictures – First of all, your ad is one of thousands on the site and one of at least dozens in the category. The one thing that’s going to make it stand out is clear pictures. People want to see what they are buying. One, clear picture is all you need. Multiple, clear pictures are great. Blurry pics might as well not be there. And if you don’t have any pics, don’t bother posting an ad.
  2. Use key words – While the description is important, be sure to use keywords that folks may use when searching for your item. For example, I was so busy writing tempting descriptions for my many yarn ads to include skein weight, colour and yarn weight, I forgot to put down the most basic descriptor: yarn! Now if someone was searching for “yarn,” they would’ve missed several of my ads because I forgot to put that in.
  3. Be open to offers – I think Kijiji is the last acceptable place that people haggle on prices for things smaller than cars and houses. I always increase the price for my item a little more ($2-10, for small items, more for larger ones) than I would like to sell them for and add OBO (or best offer) to my ads. I try not to haggle until the person has actually come to see the item as I feel there is no sense wasting your time unless they are really interested. Watch out for folks who will try and talk you too far down. Think about how little you can accept for the item and don’t go any further. I was selling an exersaucer and got several calls and emails asking way, way under the $50 I had posted it for. One person even went so far as to ask me if I would just give it to her, for free. I politely declined but was surprised at her guts. Stick to your guns and you will get the price, or close to it, for the item.
  4. Don’t accept any forms of payment except cash – I can’t stress this enough. If they don’t have cash, they can’t have the item. I don’t care about your sick grandma or kid or how you just have to run to the bank. People who are serious about buying will show up, cash in hand. Which leads me to….
  5. If it smells like a scam, it is a scam – No one, in their right mind, would EVER offer you more for the item than you are asking. EVER. I don’t care how good the offer sounds. My MIL was selling her nice leather couch on Kijiji. She got an offer for more than she was asking for the couch. They sent a legitimate looking cheque that she took to the bank, who confirmed it was a scam. The idea is the cheque looks like it has cashed, you mail the item to the scammer and then the cheque bounces. No money, no item.
  6. Be wary of out-of-town sales – I am not a fan of selling to out-of-towners. Often they are the scammers described above who should be avoided at all costs. I have sold once out-of-town with success so it can be done. First of all, I was upfront with the buyer that they would cover all the costs of shipping the items. I was not paying to ship them. Now, you can either use the Canada Post app to estimate the shipping costs, or you can actually take your items to a Canada Post outlet and they will estimate for you. Don’t forget an envelope or box and include those costs as well. I emailed the estimated cost of shipping plus the cost of the items back to the buyer, who agreed to the sale. She then emailed me money (PayPal works too if you have an account). I deposited it and went back to Canada Post and mailed the item. Get a tracking number. This way you have verification the item arrived to the buyer and they can’t claim they never received the item.
  7. Download the Kijiji app – Everyone has apps nowadays but I find the Kijiji app really helpful. It has a messaging system built into it that immediately notifies you if someone sends you an email/message about one of your items. And you can reply to the person right in the app. No more going into your email’s junk folder to look for Kijiji messages!
  8. Be patient – I would say that everything I’ve ever put on Kijiji has sold, eventually. It may be on there for two days or three months but I’ve always found a buyer. Be patient, especially when you are getting messages from scammers and people who are trying to low-ball you. Don’t feel pressure to pay Kijiji to “Bump Up” your ad to the top when it feels like your items aren’t moving. The right buyer will come along for the item.
  9. Be careful – Keep your wits about you when selling online. If something doesn’t feel right, back out of the sale. Meet in public areas to exchange items/money if you can. If you must give out your home address, never tell the buyer when you won’t be home. Pick a time for them to come to your house and stick to it. Try to have someone else home with you, if possible.

I feel like I ended on a particularly scary note with Kijiji selling but it is easy and fun to do. I myself have sold almost $300 in yarn in the last 6 weeks that was just hanging out in my basement, doing nothing. I’m sure you have stuff in your basement/attic/spare room that would make someone else very happy.

Have you sold on Kijiji? How did it go? Do you have any tips that I missed? I’d love to hear them! Happy Shopping!

I’m Back and Where I’ve Been Pt 3: Walt Disney World Edition

Hey folks. I’ve been having a great time with these trips down memory lane. I think I’ve actually shared more than if I had blogged through the whole summer. One of the most fun things we got to do this summer is take a trip to Disney World! I have always wanted to go, ever since I was a little kid. This summer seemed like the perfect time.

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People tell you it’s a magical place and how fun it is. And they were right. Even Husband, who was game for the trip but not a huge Disney fan, had the best time ever and wants to go back soon.

So we, went in the middle of May and imo, that was the perfect time. It was warm enough to go swimming but not so hot that you were worried about heat stroke. It was just before American schools let out for the summer, so there weren’t too many people there. That doesn’t mean it was dead, it just wasn’t the huge amount of crushing crowds that I hear they can get during the summer.

We got a four-day pass and spent two days at Magic Kingdom and two days at Epcot. I wish we’d had more time and gotten to spend at least one day at Animal Kingdom but there’s always next time.

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Epcot was Husband’s favourite place at Disney World

Surprisingly, character visits ended up being some of my favourite experiences. We booked them for Daughter but added on a bunch more when we found them so fun. The actors and staff work so hard at making each families’ visit a special one. Kudos go out to all of them.

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And the rides! We went on dozens of rides but of course I don’t have as many pics from them. It rained both days we were at Magic Kingdom so we rode Prince Charming Regal Carrousel and Mad Tea Party several times, sometimes right in a row! My favourites were Peter Pan’s Flight and Under the Sea ~ Journey of The Little Mermaid. We rode Splash Mountain and decided that all three of us don’t really like roller coasters so we didn’t ride any others. And yes, there may have been screaming and/or crying by all family members when we rode this ride. X0

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Splash Mountain – wasn’t for us! lol
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Liberty Square Riverboat
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Dumbo the Flying Elephant ride

At Epcot, we loved Test Track and the representation of all the lands in the World Showcase. Daughter really loved all the fish in the aquarium and Seas with Nemo and Friends exhibit. It was also time for the Epcot International Flower and Garden Festival and there were all these amazing flowers and topiaries there.

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It was so cool. Clearly a lot of work went into designing, growing and maintaining all the plants.

Lastly, but definitely not the least, was the cool stuff we bought there. We spent a few hours at Disney Springs, which is just a large outdoor mall with the most humongous Disney Store I have ever seen. I think I read somewhere it’s the largest one in North America. We bought some great souvenirs:

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T-shirt for Husband
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Princess purse for me!

Don’t worry, Daughter got a few things too but apparently I didn’t take pictures of any of them.

Anyways, thanks for sticking with me until the end. This is probably the longest post I’ve ever done and I barely scratched the surface on our Disney trip. Been to Disney? I’d love to hear about it. Happy Shopping!

How to Organize Your Christmas List

A couple of weeks ago the Sears Christmas Wish catalogue arrived in the mail and I felt a flood of memories coming back. I loved writing my Christmas wish list. I would spend hours looking through the catalogue and writing down the things I wanted.

Now that I’m an adult, my Christmas wish list is a little faster to write but it’s my gift list that I spend the most time working on before the holidays. I buy presents for nine nieces and nephews and six of those have birthdays between August 30 and Dec 25th. Add in my husband, Daughter, parents, siblings, in-laws and Great Grandma and my gift-giving list is exceptionally long. Of course, I also shop for clients and help my MIL and Great Grandma buy presents for the assortment of grand- and great-grandchildren. That’s a lot of presents!

Over the years I have created what I think is the close-to-perfect list. It has everyone’s name on it, the budgeted amount I spend on them, ideas for that year, the actual gift once I’ve bought it, the actual amount I’ve paid and a catalogue of everything I’ve bought for Christmas in the last four years so I don’t buy repeat gifts.

Here’s the jpeg version of my Excel worksheet:

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Once someone’s been crossed off the list and I’ve finished shopping for them, I highlight their gift. I’ve always toyed with the idea of putting some kind of symbol when it’s wrapped but I never get around to it.

I like to keep a total of what we spent each year so I know if we are spending more than the budget.  In 2011 we got married and there wasn’t much money leftover for gifts so everyone got framed photos of the wedding. The next year we added Daughter to our family so we spent quite a bit more. 🙂

If I feel this list isn’t going very well or I’m forgetting to work on it, I write up a list of people’s names that I put in a conspicuous place in my house. It also helps to remind my husband how many more gifts there are to buy and that he can help with the list too. It definitely helps with the feeling of accomplishment when you get to cross names off of that list!

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My goal is always to be done shopping or at least have everything ordered by Dec 1. The theory is so that I can deal with any last minute client crises and have plenty of time to wrap too. Plus it’s always nice to be shopping during December and not feel that panicked feeling that’s clear on everyone else’s faces. Inevitably tho, I’m still picking up one last gift on Dec 24.

Does that help you feel more ready to conquer the Christmas season? What tips do you use to help you feel more organized during this busy time? Happy Shopping!

2015 Advent Calendars

Hey folks! How was your Halloween? Ours was so great. Since Daughter is now 3, she actually understands what trick-or-treating is all about. We went out with another mom and daughter. The other toddler was 2 and kept trying to eat the candy while we were walking around. Needless to say, they were both adorable.

November seems to signal the beginning of the Christmas season. Decorations have been lurking in the corners of stores for a week or two already, hidden slightly behind the Halloween decorations. Now they are front and centre or were being unpacked by staff. I went shopping yesterday and was surprised/impressed by the quick change over that stores were making into the biggest holiday season of the year.

I have been debating getting Daughter an advent calendar over the last couple of years. It seems fun to have something she would be able to open each day to count down to Christmas. However, being that she is still small, I haven’t been crazy about feeding her a chocolate every day. Yesterday I found several non-chocolate advent calendars and thought I would share them with you.

  1. First of all is the coveted Lego advent calendars. I saw both the Lego City and Lego Friends calendars and Google assures me there is also a Lego Star Wars one out there too although I haven’t seen it with my own eyes. (ToysRUs.ca, $39.99 for Friends and City, $49.99 for Star Wars)LegoFriendsAC LegoCityAD
  2.  Playmobil advent calendars seem to be as equally popular and hard to find as the Lego ones once the season gets underway. Toys R Us has five sets: Christmas Room; Santa’s Workshop; Fire Rescue Operation: Unicorn Fairyland; and Playmobil 1.2.3 Advent Calendar. (ToysRUs.ca, $29.99)PlaymobilGirlACPlaymobilAD
  3. I had no idea that Play-Doh did advent calendars until I found this one yesterday. It comes with five small cans of Play-Doh and several stampers and cutters and lots of other small items needed to make Christmas cookie-like shapes and patterns. Super cute! (ToysRUs.ca, $21.99)PlayDohAC
  4. Not to be out-done, Mega Bloks makes an advent calendar as well. This year, the theme is Minions/Despicable Me. It doesn’t seem to be based on one particular movie or theme but just randomly mixing Minions and Christmas. Which I’m sure will be fine for the Minion-maniac in your house. (ToysRUs.ca, $39.99)DespicableMeAD
  5. The last toy one, the Little People advent calendar, was the one I was most interested in for Daughter. It seems to be the only one specifically geared towards toddlers. And while it is super cute, it doesn’t seem to coordinate with any of the other sets that you can buy regularly, which is a bummer in my opinion. (ToysRUs.ca, $49.99)LittlePeopleAC
  6. If you aren’t interested in giving your kids a bunch of stuff to countdown to the holidays, you might like this one by Melissa and Doug. The sturdy wood Christmas cutout allows you place the ornament of your choice on each day until you have a fully decorated tree on Christmas. (Chapters, $24.99)MelissaandDougAC
  7. And no Advent Calendar list would be complete without mentioning the David’s Tea advent calendar. This 24 piece tea gift has cute, gold tins hidden behind each door. Each tin holds enough tea for 2 cups and includes both seasonal and everyday teas such as Snow Day, Hot Chocolate, Cardamom French Toast, Mulled Wine, Sweet Almond Green, Santa’s Secret, Sleigh Ride, and Gingerbread Cookie. This one does sell out quickly so if you are thinking about buying it, I would get your hands on one soon. (DavidsTea.ca, $40)DavidsTeaAC

Those are the ones I felt were worth mentioning here. I know there are also some makeup ones but there either wasn’t enough information on them at this point or you couldn’t buy them in Canada yet. (Head over to see Julie’s sneak peeks of some at Swatch and Review). Starbucks has one (and it is gorgeous) but it’s filled with just chocolate, so I didn’t include it.

Any other that I missed? Leave me a comment. Happy Shopping!

More new stores coming to Polo Park

Hey folks, some exciting shopping news for Winnipeg. We’ve know for awhile that H&M was coming to Polo Park this fall. And if you’ve been to the mall lately you can guess that it will possibly cover two floors on the wing nearest to Hudson’s Bay but close to centre court. Today Polo Park’s Facebook page announced several stores that will be joining the H&M opening in the fall. Here is the quote from their website:

We are pleased to confirm that Urban Outfitters and Anthropolgie will be opening their first stores at Polo Park later this year, a first for the Winnipeg market. They join H&M, who previously announced the opening their first Winnipeg store this fall. New retailers to the shopping centre mix also include Nine West, Thomas Sabo, Fossil, Journeys, WATCH IT! and Pandora.

The website goes on to say this redevelopment will cost $49 million and add 114,000 square feet of new retail space with 25,000 square feet going to H&M. They will also be adding a mall entrance where the old Zellers entrance used to be and 370 feet of new skylights in the new area. The Facebook page also mentions The Disney Store returning to Winnipeg as part of this redevelopment. Wow! This is super exciting news for Winnipeg. Pair this with the news earlier this year that an outlet mall is coming to Winnipeg in 2017 by the new IKEA and we are finally becoming a shopping destination along with other major Canadian cities.

What stores are you excited about? Any that you think still need to come to Winnipeg? Happy Shopping!