Tag Archives: ebay hints

Going once! Going twice! Going three times! Gone, Charlie Sheen!

I suppose if you have any Charlie Sheen items, now would be a good time to put them up for auction on eBay, although some people might consider it wiser to wait until he’s dead.

Sometimes celebrity memorabilia increases after an untimely demise.

I reviewed my collection of DVDs and I don’t have any Charlie Sheen merchandise. Drat!

Frankly I wouldn’t wait until he chokes on his own vomit. I would list Charlie Sheen items for sale on either eBay or Half.com right now. First of all, the improbable might happen and he could survive this flameout. If he does, it will rank right up there with the time Chuck Yeager lost control of the X-1A and plummeted 51,000 feet in 51 seconds before he was able to somehow right the aircraft and land safely.

And if the what-looks-to-be-inevitable does happen and Sheen moves on to star in that great sitcom in the clouds alongside John Belushi and Anna Nicole Smith I don’t think our interest in him will last long.

In other words, it’s highly unlikely that Charlie Sheen will ever be a hotter property than he is today. All the agents, lawyers and entrepreneurs (aka porn stars and strippers) that are currently hovering around him like vultures over roadkill are indicators of this truth.

So gather up your autographed copies of “Major League,” copyright your recipe for “Tiger Blood” and offer them up for sale on eBay before it’s too late.

I have just two words for people who think they can wait until tomorrow to cash in on this narrow window of financial opportunity: Beanie Babies.

Woulda coulda shoulda set a reserve price

I’ve never used a reserve price in any of my auctions so far, but when our halogen kitchen light bar sold for about $10, I wish I had.

The auction had a few watchers and an early opening bid at the minimum price. I was certain there would be a few closing bids to push the price up to a decent level.

I was wrong.

The guy who won the auction got an incredible price on a great light fixture. I told him so in the note I sent him when I waved goodbye to my fixture down at the Post Office. To add insult to injury, I had to buy a pack of packing peanuts to properly pack the package (say that five times fast). By the time I paid for the peanuts, I think I made about a buck three eighty off the light fixture.

Enough whining, back to the subject of reserve prices. Unfortunately there’s an extra fee that comes with setting a reserve price and it’s not cheap. For reserve prices set at less than $200 the fee is $2. Above that, the fee is one percent of the reserve price.

That’s the bad news. The good news is that if your item sells, you get the reserve fee back. You only pay the extra reserve fee if your item doesn’t sell. So, from one perspective it’s a gamble but from another point of view it’s an insurance policy.

Hmmm. Ambiguity. You gotta love it, or not.

There is another approach, and that is to set a higher starting bid level if you’re really convinced your item is worth a certain amount or you don’t want to see it fly out the door too cheaply. Of course, with higher starting bids, eBay charges higher listing fees. So again, it’s a trade off.

However, if you do sell your item with a low starting price and a reserve, your final fee will be less than setting a higher starting bid without a reserve.

There is another drawback with higher starting prices. They chase off a lot of buyers. So there you go.

By the way, if you do start an auction with a reserve price, it’s okay to tell bidders what the reserve price is. There’s no rule against it and buyers tend to appreciate your willingness to be honest and open about the situation.

Merry eBay Holiday Hints

I’m about ready to list an item or two on eBay, but I’m a little troubled by the holidays. My fear is that auctions will not perform very well between Christmas and New Year’s Day.

My only hope is that there are some people out there who had a Food Saver or new aquarium filter on their lists to Santa but were disappointed on Christmas morning.

Of course, holidays can also play into your hand when you’re deciding what to put on eBay so it can pay off handsomely to keep this in mind as you’re going through your attic or nosing through local garage sales for items to sell.

Holidays like Valentine’s Day and Halloween seem like real naturals for eBay tie ins. Some nice jewelry might do well leading up to Valentine’s day. Maybe you can get rid of that old Richard Nixon mask next October.

Christmas decorations, both large and small, should find a market among eBay shoppers. Of course, the options for dads and grads are nearly endless.

But, those aren’t my concerns tonight. Right now I’m wondering if I’m wasting my time starting an auction that’s going to end between Christmas and New Year’s Day.

A week from now will I be overcome with “ho, ho, ho” giddiness or will I be getting ready for a “bah humbug” re-listing?

I’ll let you know how it goes.