Last week, MC Milker (from the Not Quite Crunchy Parent) commented that one of the advantages of wooden play kitchens is that they're sturdy enough to last through several kids, and can be sold on eBay when you're done with them.
I certainly know people who use the high potential resale value as a justification (excuse?) for buying high end baby and kid stuff, from Bugaboo strollers to Hanna Andersson clothing. But I wonder how many of them actually wind up reselling things? The most cost-effective thing to do is probably to both buy things used and resell them.
I've sold some baby stuff, but I've given away far more. For t-shirts and the like, I just can't be bothered to carefully wash, photograph, advertise, respond to questions, and then either schlepp to the post office or make arrangements to meet the buyers. I'm curious about the people who do find this worthwhile. Some people are clearly doing this on a semi-professional basis, buying things at end of season sales specifically in order to sell them online the next year. But others are just listing a few items, as their kids outgrow them. It's a high tech yard sale.
I try to give things to friends or family, but if they're not interested, or if I'm just desperate to get something out of the house, it goes to Value Village. We just gave our jog stroller to a friend who is expecting her first baby. Yes, we probably could have gotten some money for it, but the money isn't make-or-break for us, so we decided to just give it to her. Things have to be pretty beat up before I just put them in the trash.
We buy the vast majority of the boys' clothes on ebay. I refuse to spend $8 on a t-shirt. Some day maybe they'll figure it out and protest, but as long as we can get away with it, we will. I focus on the large lots, since otherwise the shipping makes it less of a bargain. When I'm paying $2 each for pants, I don't sweat it if one or two pieces don't fit. I know it's more expensive than the thrift store, but I'm willing to pay a few dollars for the convenience.
I happened to be looking at my eBay profile today, and discovered that I've been a member since June 1999. That surprises me -- I wouldn't have guessed that I'd been on it so long. I've got a feedback level of 71, but I've probably bought closer to a hundred things (not everyone gives feedback). Of all the things that I've bought on eBay, I've only really been disappointed once (by a used computer where the battery wouldn't hold a charge). At this point, I'm surprised when I run into people who have never bought anything on eBay.