Skip to main content
Nike sneakers
7 min read

Buy Cheap, Sell High: Easy Items To ‘Flip’ For Cash

Wouldn’t it be great to find a way to make extra money from home every month? Do you fancy yourself as a bit of a Delboy Trotter, buying and selling, wheeling and dealing? Hopefully, with the help of this article, you can have a bit more success than poor old Delboy.

This time next year we’ll be millionaires… 

We’re going to establish: 

  • Why ‘flipping’ items for cash is a great idea 
  • 20 ‘flippable’ items with the biggest profit potentials 
  • Where to find stuff to buy cheap 
  • Where to sell stuff for a high price 
  • 10 top tips for success

Is it worth it? Let me work it.

If you have a bit of spare time on your hands, flipping items for cash can be a good way to turn your bank balance’s frown upside down. You can be totally flexible about when and how long you spend on it. And start small so that you don’t have to lay out a huge investment or take a big risk. 

Reselling second-hand items also benefits the environment and if you’re skilled with your hands, there’s even more opportunity to bring home the bacon by repairing, refurbishing and upcycling.  

The longer you spend on your ‘flipping’ project, the better you’ll get at it. Working out what things sell for the most and where. And just think how proud you’ll feel to be turning a profit for your hard work and wares.


What to find or buy to ‘flip’

You’re looking for items that people perceive as valuable and are expensive to purchase new but that some will be giving away for next to nothing. We’re talking under the bed and in the loft-type stuff.

Here is a list of twenty of the most ‘flippable’ items to get you started: 

1. Solid wood furniture
Upholstered furniture 
3. Garden furniture and ornaments 
4. Electronic garden tools 
5. Power tools 
6. Household appliances 
7. Sports equipment 
8. Vintage sportswear 
9. Designer clothes and shoes 
10. Bikes 
11. Pushchairs
12. Jukeboxes
13. Record players and records 
14. Photography equipment 
15. Collectable and classic toys like Lego 
16. Video games and consoles 
17. Sell Car parts
18. Book sets
19. Vintage board games 
20. Golf buggies


Where to find ‘flippable’ things 

The best place to find items to sell (because it’s the easiest and cheapest) will be your own home. Have a really good rummage for anything that you don’t need anymore and could turn into cash. If your family or friends will let you do the same or you can offer to help them to have a clear-out then jump at the chance. 

Places that you can find brilliant bargains are: 

1. Your home or at family and friends
House clearances 
3. Car boot and garage sales
4. Village/church hall and fete sales, ‘bring and buys’ 
5. Charity shops 
6. Flea markets 
7. Junk shops 
8. Auctions (you can also legally buy stolen goods and lost property from police auctions) 
9. Skips and rubbish bins (with permission) 
10. Online from sites like eBay, Fat Llama, Gumtree and Facebook Marketplace  

It’s sensible to think about the location that you’re searching for your items in. For example, charity shops in Kensington are more likely to stock designer items but they are also more likely to be savvy to pricing their items higher. Garden tools that you might buy from a car boot sale for 50p in rural Somerset might be worth a lot more sold in a big city.

10 flipping great tips for success

Follow these ten steps to ensure you ‘flip’ with low risk and high success rates. 

1. Start small and build up. See what you can achieve by beginning with an investment of, say, £20. If you can’t turn a profit from this there is no reason that you would be able to do it with £200 or £2000, the same principles will apply. 

2. Better still, start by selling your own things or other things that you can source for free. This will begin to give you an idea of how much things are worth and what the process of selling them involves before you have risked any investment. 

3. Consider focusing on one thing or something you already know a bit about. This will give you a niche in the market. 

4. Always try to find out what something is worth before you buy it and don’t forget to take into account details like condition, packaging and age. Look for clothes and shoes with tags and items that are new and come in boxes. 

5. Check whether things work or not before you purchase. 

6. Decide on the price you are willing to pay and stick to it. This is the key to negotiating. And always know when to shut up. “The next person to talk loses” is a famous saying about the power of silence when it comes to buying and selling.  

7. Don’t be afraid to negotiate and ask for discounts in any situation. The worst that can happen is they can say no and ‘flipping’ is all about maximising those profit margins at every opportunity. 

8. Ask the seller if they have any more similar items for sale (and see if you can buy more at a bulk discount). 

9. When you’re selling online give accurate and detailed descriptions and include lots of good photos. 

10. Do your research and ask around. People will often know the best places to get bargains or even own things that they want to get rid of but haven’t got round to doing it.



The fundamentals of any business are to make sure you are always learning from your mistakes, gaining new insights and putting into practice your additional knowledge. And keep a close eye on your costs and profit margins. When the money starts to flow in, re-invest your profits to grow a flipping brilliant business. 


For even more tips and insights read our guide on how to start a business on Amazon or eBay

Share this content
Sophie Cross

Sophie Cross is a freelance writer and marketer specialising in business and travel. She is the editor for London Revealed magazine and her clients include Group and Merlin Entertainments

Leave a Reply

Register with Informi today:

  • Join over 30,000 like-minded business professionals.
  • Create your own personalised account with curated reading lists and checklists.
  • Access exclusive resources including business plans, templates, and tax calculators.
  • Receive the latest business advice and insights from Informi.
  • Join in the discussion through the comments section.