How Much Does ThredUp Pay?

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I’ve been using ThredUp for a while now to sell clothes. It’s an online consignment and thrift shop where you can buy and sell lightly-used items like jewelry, clothes, handbags, and shoes. The first time I used ThredUp, I only had to order a cleanout kit and then I sent it back.

But now, their process has changed and I had to pay a bunch of optional fees.

Before you can start selling on ThredUp, you need to visit the website, click on the CLEAN OUT tab, and then click on the ORDER A FREE KIT button to get a clean out kit. Basically, you have two options: you can sell your clothing or you can choose to donate them.

After that, your ThredUp kit goes through processing. You can select free standard processing, or you can opt for expedited processing and pay $16. With expedited processing, ThredUp will process your items within one week of arrival.

Now, it’s likely that you will have items that ThredUp won’t take for resale. In general, it only accepts roughly 40% of the items sent.

For the items that ThredUp doesn’t accept for resale, you can choose to have the items sent back to you for an additional $10.99 fee. If you’d like them to ship a bag with a prepaid return shipping label, you need to pay $1.99. But of course, you can choose not to spend anything on this and instead print the shipping label yourself, and then ship the items to them in a used box. If you don’t want the items sent back to you, you can donate them as an alternative.

When you get the kit, you fill it with lightly-used items that you want to sell or donate. Once you’re done filling up the kit, you use the prepaid shipping label and then place it in the mail. When ThredUp receives and processes your items, they will let you know. If you chose the standard processing option, it will take about 2 to 8 weeks (as per my experience) before they can process your items.

ThredUp Processing Time

When ThredUp is done processing your bag, they will inform you what items are accepted upfront and which ones are placed on consignment. Upfront means that the clothing you sent is in excellent condition and is in-season. If your clothing is accepted upfront, this means you will be given a payout right away. If it is on consignment, it means that, even though they are in good condition, you will receive the payout only when the items are sold.

Processing your bag at ThredUp can take quite a long time. The website says that it can take 1 to 3 weeks – or longer – before your Clean Out bag can be processed and listed online. In my case, I sent my kit containing summer clothes in about August. September came and I still didn’t hear from ThredUp so I called customer service, only to be informed that it arrived but somehow the bag still hasn’t made it through processing. October came and I learned that the bag still wasn’t processed. I was told that they had backlog issues and that it may take up to 4 weeks before the bag can be processed. Eventually, my bag was processed over a month after arrival.

This actually presents a big problem because of the fact that the clothing you send has to be on-trend for it to be accepted. So, if your bag doesn’t get processed within the time that your clothing is in season, then chances are the clothing will either get declined or it will be downgraded. The best way around this is to send your kit at the start of the suitable season.

How much does ThredUp pay?

For this very important question, you need to remember that ThredUp only accepts about 40% of the clothing you send. And, they sort out your items depending on the condition and the quality.  This means the clothing can be accepted right away, or it can be placed on consignment. The amount of money you make depends on a payout table that lists down different tiers of listing price with the equivalent payout percentage for each.

If your clothing is accepted as upfront items, you can expect a payout of around 5% to 80% of the selling price based on the listing price. For consignment items, you can make approximately 20% to 95% of the sale value based on its listing price. If you’re selling luxury clothing, you can expect an additional 10% for items listed with prices over $100. ThredUp sends payments via ThredUp shopping credit, Visa prepaid card, or cash through PayPal.

How do I get the best reselling results?

Now, you need to remember a few important things when it comes to reselling your clothing at ThredUp. Before you send your clothing, you need to make sure that the items are clean, in good condition, are less than five years old, are wearable, and with NONE of the following: visible defects (shrinkage, fading, or pilling), damages, alterations, stains, tears, or rips.

So, be sure to inspect your clothing for these things before shipping them to ThredUp. This way, you can avoid decline or return.

Is selling clothes via ThredUp worth the effort?

This will entirely depend on you. To be frank, you can choose to resell your lightly-used clothes via ThredUp instead of giving them away to friends or sending them to Goodwill. With the former, you can, of course, earn money. And if you have luxury items to resell, you have other venues where you can earn more without putting up with a certain degree of hassle. If you’re one of those who keep their clothes for years, you can still consider sending them to ThredUp and have a go at it. Or, for what it’s worth, you can just donate it.

Still, ThredUp is pretty much easy to use. If you update your wardrobe every season, that means you have trendy clothes to send, which means you have higher chances of earning more money. And, if you have children who need to update their wardrobe every season, all the better. This is because I noticed that ThredUp accepts more items for kids than for adults. Of course, that adds up to your earning possibilities. Just make sure though that you send your seasonally-appropriate items a bit ahead of time.

In addition, ThredUp has a feature that I see as a plus point. It offers a shopping credit that I can use to purchase clothing items from the thrift store itself. There are so many clothing items on sale that are worthy of the price I pay for using the shopping credit. There are even really new clothes with the tags still attached to them and they’re unbelievably inexpensive. And, if you really look for it, you will find luxury clothing brands that you can buy for a fraction of the price that you’d usually pay.

The lowdown

While selling clothes using ThredUp presents various advantages, you must keep in mind  that at the end of the day, ThredUp is a business and a business has to make money as well. Essentially, this means that the company takes used or unused clothing items and sell them for a profit. In essence, you will be sending them a shirt that cost you $50 and then they take it, offer you a lower price for it, and then sell it at a higher price, with you getting a certain percentage. So, before you ship off your clothes to them, you have to become accustomed to that because ThredUp is a for-profit business and it also needs to gain profits to stay afloat.

Final Thoughts

On the whole, I find buying and selling lightly-used clothing at ThredUp a worthy effort. It requires a generally uncomplicated process. I just send them used clothing in good condition and wait for them to process and list it. They take care of all the arduous work of segregating the items, listing them, taking photographs, and dealing with the transaction until it’s done.

If you’re thinking about using ThredUp to earn money from your used clothing, you should first understand what you’re entering into, consider the length of time involved, particularly in terms of processing, what to expect in terms of earnings, and if it is indeed a viable option for you compared with selling your clothing in a more conventional manner.

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Tom Nathaniel

Hi! My name is Tom Nathaniel, and I created LushDollar to help share my honest thoughts on everything money. You won't find gimmicks here. It's the Internet's most honest money site after all. I graduated from Arizona State University, and I have worked in the finance industry since 2006, consulting with multiple Fortune 5000 companies.

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