002: Weekly Q&A: How Much Money Can You REALLY Make Flipping? How Many Hours Do You Work Per Week? Do You Sell On Other Websites Besides Craigslist? How Quickly Do You Turn Items Around? What Transportation Do You Use? Where Do You Store Your Stuff?
The Flipping Ninja’s Weekly Listener Q & A offers highly-focused, non-theoretical, no-nonsense Q&A.
- How much money can you REALLY make flipping?
- How many hours per week do you work?
- Do you sell on other websites besides Craigslist?
- How quickly do you turn items around?
- What transportation do you use?
- Where do you store your stuff?
“If an item isn’t selling fairly fast, then it usually means that there’s a marketing problem on your side that you must fix.”
“…when I first started, before I knew anything about flipping PERIOD, it took me 2-3 months of just kind of half-assing it to get to $500 per month with just a couple hours per week. So I was basically starting out total beginner, you know, going really slow, barely doing it and forgetting about it. Just randomly trying it here and there.”
“…by month two or three I was making $500/month consistently after that. And then obviously it continued to scale….”
“I’d say a good guideline, as a beginner — you could get to $500 per month very quickly and very easily. I’m not going to talk too much about how easy it is to get to $500 per month — it’s ridiculous.”
“If items are taking forever to sell or not selling it’s always one of these things: it could be your pictures need work. You’ve got poor pictures. Or it means your description needs work. It’s not compelling enough. It’s not selling the item hard enough. Or your price could be way off. But usually, I save price for last because if you’re good, you can sell fast and for high — with good marketing.”
“Once you create a killer ad that sells like crazy for an item — you must expose it to thousands of people. At that point, all it takes is just one person. One person to raise their hand and say, “Oh my God! I’ve ben looking for that trumpet since I was little, I want to buy it! When can I pick it up?! I’ll even pay you $400 if you save it for me!” That’s all it takes.”
What To Do Next
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Full Episode Transcript
Do you want more control over your life, more freedom, more confidence? Do you want to set your own rules and steer your own ship? Are you sick and tired of the nine to five grind that’s eating away at you and robbing you of all your time, barely getting you by? How about a new way, a new side hustle, side income you can use now to do things like pay off debts, buy a new car, wipe away credit card bills and student loans. Remodel your home, take exotic vacations, fancier dates, buy your friends a round of drinks, and send a nice gift to your family. How about an emergency fund or even a down payment for a house and so much more? Welcome to the flipping ninja podcast where we teach you how to take charge of your life, and make your own money, flipping things in your spare time. Sound complicated? We’ll cover it all from what to buy, where to look, marketing and selling tactics that create demand. And bring you top dollar research, pricing, creating ads that sell like crazy and even powerful principals on the inner game of success. So if the idea of being your own boss is exciting, you are in the right place. Now here’s your host, the world’s leading authority on flipping, A.J. from the flippingninja.com, unplugged and unleashed
Hey guys, its A.J., the flipping ninja. Welcome to this week’s podcast where we’re going to do a flipping ninja Q&A. So every week you’re going to get a podcast that’s going to be called the flipping ninja Q&A. And it’s literally nothing but taking your questions, taking the most common questions that you guys have and answering them just totally on the fly. Just trying to, you know, hammer out as many answers and, cover as many questions as possible. So I’m not going to really go super deep into each answer just because I want to kind of just keep it short and you know, punchy I guess. So I can try and get as many questions as possible. So I hope that’s okay with you guys. So some of the most common questions that people have sent in and just have been wondering about me or about flipping or about this business is how much money can you really make doing this? So a lot of people wonder, you know, they hear about flipping, like how much money can you actually make doing it? Like realistically and all that, right, and the answer to that is, you know, I don’t want to make it sound like a cliché answer or like something that’s just really open or vague, but the truth is that you can make as money, how much money you make in this business is completely up to you.
And I’m not just saying that to make flipping sound good or like magical or hype and stuff. I’m actually saying that because it’s completely logical, it’s just common sense. I mean, you literally have, depending on how much work you put in and depending on how much information you have, it’s really up to you. So, for example, if you’re just starting out and you maybe don’t really know that much about flipping and, maybe you don’t have that much time, you’re not going to make as much money doing it as someone who has been doing it for a while and has more time on their hands, right. So that’s the first thing to realize is that it’s subjective, so when, you know, it’s kind of a weird question when people are like, well, how much money can you really make doing this?
It’s like, dude, it depends. What’s your situation? Where are you at? You know, because like I said, when I first started, before I knew anything about flipping when I first started, it took me about two to three months of just kind of half-assing it to get to $500 per month, just with a couple of hours per week. Okay, so I was basically starting out, a total beginner, you know, going really slow and just not, like barely doing it and forgetting about it and just randomly trying it. It took me about two or three months but after that, I was making $500 consistently. And then obviously it continued to scale. But I’d say it’s a good guideline as a beginner, you could get to 500 per month very quickly and very easily. I’m not going to talk too much about how easy it is to get to $500 per month.
I’ll save that for another episode because you guys, I don’t even know if you’ll be able to believe how easy it is to make 500 per month flipping. Okay, so you can make 500, I got to a point where, you know, for a while I was like really just motivated and I was in this total hustle, and grind mode where I just was doing nothing but just, working and then flipping things outside of that. And I was making $3,000 per month. And at first, that was a challenge. But like I said, as you continue to do it, it gets easier and easier, with the more knowledge you gain. Knowledge is power. I know one guy; he’s making $100,000 per year, strictly selling things on eBay.
So he wouldn’t even leave his house. He would do it all online. He would sell things on eBay. The only time he would leave his house is just to, ship the items out. But he was making $100,000 per year just from his house on eBay alone. So, there’s another model for you to think about, so that you know what’s possible. So, as far as how much can you actually make doing this, it’s really up to you. Okay, so next question is how many hours per week do you work and how do you divide your time? So, as I mentioned in the previous podcast, the hours that you work per week, it’s not really something that you can measure, okay. The nature of the flipping business, the buying and reselling business, the nature of it, it’s not trading your time for money business.
It’s not, an hourly getting paid per hour type of business. It’s not that type of business. It’s a profits and marketing world. It’s profits and marketing business. So when you’re operating in a profits and marketing business, the amount of time you put in, the number of hours you put in is not a good measure to try and think about, oh, how many hours per week do you put in and how do you divide your time? Because here’s the thing, there’s been so many times where I’ve made $1,000 profit in 45 minutes of work. There’s been tons of times where you’ll walk into a thrift store and you’ll literally spend 15 minutes there and you’ll walk out having made $700 you know, you see certain items, you buy them and you flip them and you make $700 so you literally spent 15 minutes at the thrift store, 15 minutes driving home, 15 minutes posting, taking pictures and posting them up for sale, that’s 45 minutes.
Okay, you’ve just made $700 in 45 minutes, right? I mean, isn’t that crazy? So it’s not really like, I really don’t want to give you like a how many hours I worked per week type answer because it’s a profits and marketing world. So it doesn’t really work like how we were raised. Like where, you know, you just punch it in, you get paid x dollars per hour, you’re done. But with that being said, I also know that a lot of you are just like, yeah, yeah, yeah. Just tell me how many hours, right. So for you guys, for that part of your curiosity, you are wondering, I would say I’ve never, you know, in all the years I’ve been doing this which is over 10 years and in all the years I’ve been doing this, I have never spent more than, I would say 20 hours tops per week flipping.
I’ve never spent more than 20 hours. Okay, so thinking about that, 10 years of doing this, I’ve spent over $200,000 in this business buying things and selling them, right. All this time. I’ve never worked more than 20 hours in one week. And I will say though, I do remember there was one week; where I might’ve hit 25. Okay, there was one week where I might’ve hit 25 hours working and that was when I was at my peak with flipping because I was just this crazy like flipping junkie. Okay, it was crazy, I basically turned; my whole house into a place where I stored all my items. Okay, I mean it was crazy. I had like, maybe five couches; I had like six tables. I had furniture everywhere and it’s totally fine, you can do that.
I had my own place, I was a single dude. I was just doing my thing right. I was just in hustle mode. But, I would say there was, you know when I was in a crazy flipping mode, I think I might have a one week, I think I have spent 25 hours that week. Okay, but outside of that, I’ve made over $100,000 in sales flipping in one year and I’ve never worked more than 20 hours. So my assumption is you shouldn’t have to work more than 20 hours, per week. And as far as how I divided that time, at the time I was working a full-time job, I was working a nine to five job
So the only time I had to give this a shot and try it was after work and then on the weekends. So basically what I would do is, I would work from nine to five. I would get off at 5 or 5:30 and then I would have from like 5:30 to 9:00 PM because that’s when most stores close. I would have those few hours to just hit up some thrift stores and look for things to buy and resell, right. So I would do it after work, a few hours after work, and then I would do it on weekends. So Saturdays and Sundays, I mean, oh my God, it’s the most fun thing ever in the world. And I mean, you probably have to experience this couple of times first before you feel the same. But the best thing in the world is waking up on a Saturday morning, you know, beautiful, sunny Saturday morning early and just getting ready to go out and freaking go thrifting.
So you literally wake up and you go to all these stores, you go to all these thrift stores and seeing all these random things. And it’s just super like, I don’t know, it’s like this relaxing super fun thing. But here’s the best part, you’re having so much fun, you freaking making bank. So you’re literally getting paid to spend your Saturday just going to all these stores and looking at cool shit, right? I mean, I remember I would go to pawn shops, you know, I’ll never forget these memories, I remember I would go to these pawn shops all the time around my neighborhood and they always had the coolest things- so they would have like random, they would have like Samurai swords and like, you know, jewelry and watches. I remember one time they had the world’s strongest laser pointer.
Okay, the world’s strongest laser pointer, they were selling it. And I actually bought that and I flipped it. You can go to the flipping ninja.com/blog and you’ll see my posts about how I flipped the world’s strongest laser pointer. I mean, this laser would freaking burn through, it will burn you if you hold it on your hand or whatever. So, anyway, I would go to these thrift stores and pawn shops on the weekends. So that’s how I usually divide my time and that’s really all I needed, after work and at weekends. The next question, what kind of transportation do you use? Okay, so as far as the transportation that I use, because I know there are a lot of people who flip small items and then there are people who get into flipping bigger items like furniture or, you know, bikes or whatever it is.
And obviously if you’re looking to flip bigger items, you’re going to need a bigger car, right? Or usually, it’s better to have a bigger car. Because I mean, how are you going to fit this awesome dresser in your small Honda Civic, right? So here’s the thing, when I first started, I had a sedan. Okay. I had a small car and I would just use that. And when I first started, as I said, I would only flip things that were not big. So I would only flip things that I could. But as I continued to get more experience, I’m like, you know what, there’s a lot of money in like the bigger items, you know, why don’t I try this? And then the first time I ever flipped something big, I actually, the first time was I rented a truck from Menards.
And at first, it was weird because I’m like, I’m freaking renting a truck to do like this, it feels like it’s too much. Like this feels kind of crazy. I felt a little crazy doing that, right. You know, renting a truck from Menards for, I think it was like $18 for 90 minutes and then, picking up the couch or the piece of furniture or the chair whenever it is, right. So I started with a small car and then for a while I was renting pickup trucks and then I continued to rent pickup trucks after my very first flip. I’m like, Oh my God, I made this. How much did I just make from this one flip? I made so much money that it was crazy for me to not continue to rent trucks, right.
But then after I kept, doing that, I’m like, okay, I’m flipping so much that I need to buy a truck, right? I need to buy just like a beater pickup truck because that’d probably be super helpful, right? So that’s when I, I actually used flipping, I flipped a bunch of stuff and made like $1,500 and I literally bought an old red pickup truck, right? I mean, it was a total beater, but it did the job. It’s rusty and whatever, but as I said, the only reason I needed it was to flip bigger items. Okay, so I got the pickup truck and then after that, I switched to an SUV. And then I did that for a while I used an SUV and then I actually sold the pickup truck.
Funny enough, I sold the pickup truck for a profit and I just have an SUV now. So having an SUV does the job perfectly now for what I do, because first of all, it’s a big car and I can usually flip large items and carry it around just fine. So like I said, it doesn’t really matter too much what you start with. As long as you start learning and start doing it, that’s what matters is you know start doing it. Even if you have a small car, you have to start it. So as far as transportation, that’s what I used. All right, next question is how do you manage to get big items if it’s just you doing the pickups? So a lot of times whenever I would have to pick up a bigger item, I would rely on the sellers helping me out.
So literally I would go there by myself and then I would just hope that the sellers would help me carry it out and haul and lift into my truck. And then I’d have to figure out how to, the rest on the other side on my own. But that’s what I did for a while, especially when it was a killer deal. And then after that, I would just bring a friend to help me. And then eventually, I actually started to get really creative with how to move large items single-handedly. And you don’t have to be some muscle man or some strong men or you know, some person, some strong woman or whatever, you don’t have to be like super strong to lift large items. Okay, you can rely on brute strength and try to power it, but it’s too risky.
It’s totally not worth it. Okay, you’re basically playing with fire because it’s like, yeah, you can muscle it and this and that, but it’s like you’re putting your body, your back, you’re everything at risk for injury, right. And it’s not brute strength, it’s not power, the thing’s when it comes to moving big items if you don’t have help, and even if you do have help is technique. Okay, everything comes down to tools and technique when it comes to this stuff. Okay, when you’re moving a big item, you know you’re doing it right. If it’s barely any work for you, if it’s not hard work for you, if it’s like super easy and you barely put in any muscle or effort, then you’re doing it right because that means you’re utilizing tools and technique. And there are always tools and techniques that will make any moving job easy.
Okay, so that’s the key when it comes to moving large items, you shouldn’t be trying to muscle it. I mean you can, I obviously did it before I learned how to move items on my own and I would not recommend it. I would recommend instead invest in learning how to move things on your own. Invest how certain tools like straps or techniques of carrying or moving items. Just kind of get familiar with it. Invest just the time to learn that part so that you never have to muscle things again. Okay, so that’s what I would recommend when it comes to moving large items. Next question is where do you store your stuff and do you have a big backlog of items? At first, when started flipping before I bought my house, I lived in a, just like a small one bedroom apartment.
So I would just literally store my items in my apartment wherever, living room or extra room, wherever. I would just literally store them wherever it doesn’t; I mean it’s not a big deal, right? And no, I did not have a big backlog of items back then because you know; the items would sell pretty fast. So it’s not like I would be sitting on things for a long time. They would sell pretty quickly. And then, I bought my own house and moved in. It was bigger and I had more space. I had a two car garage, so I just started doing the same thing except I just had more space now and I had a garage. So I literally just store my items there on like Raj in at home.
And same deal with those, they move pretty quickly, they sell fast, but that’s just because I know how to up sell them fast and I know how to advertise and create as that sell. But they sell pretty quickly. The next question is, do you turn the items around quickly and do you sell via any websites other than craigslist? Yes, I do turn them around quickly. Items sell very fast whenever I post them up. I would see sometimes it’ll sell in a couple of hours, obviously not all the time. That would be freaking sweet if it’s sold all the time in hours. But it usually sells in either a couple of days or two weeks tops. Or if I’m totally slacking, I have sat on items for longer than that, but usually, if an item is not selling fairly fast it usually means that there’s a marketing problem on your side.
That usually means either your pictures need work, you’ve got poor pictures, or it means your description needs work, it’s not compelling enough. It’s not selling the item part enough. Your price could be way off. But usually, I save price for last because usually if you’re good, you know how you can basically craft photos and an ad description that justifies the high price, okay, if you’re good. But, so I would usually save price for the last, I would check my pictures, my title, and my description, right. And also the category too but category is not as important as the pictures, title, and the description. So, items sell pretty quickly, if they don’t sell fast that usually means you need to come back and work on something in your ad and try again. Then as far as any other websites besides craigslist, so I made several thousands of dollars because of craigslist.
I’ve made thousands through eBay. I’ve sold on offer-up, I’ve sold on let-go, I’ve sold on face-book marketplace, it’s not really about the channel, it’s not about the medium. It’s not about the best place to sell craigslist or eBay, it’s not about that. When it comes to selling and what websites or platforms to use my philosophy, and this should be your philosophy as well, if you want to skip through all the nonsense and just be successful fast, is your job. When you’re flipping an item, your mission and your job are to get your ad and your product in front of as many eyeballs as humanly possible. Okay, so that you want to be omnipresent, everywhere. Okay, it’s one of the fifth secrets that I share in my flipping process and philosophy.
Okay, it’s called octopus selling. Now an octopus has eight legs, right? That means you want to be eight different places. That means you want to be everywhere, okay? Eight, nine, ten as many, you want to be on every medium, every website, every platform that you can, because you want to place your product in front of as many eyeballs as possible. Okay, so a lot of times when I’m selling something, I’ll post it on craigslist. I’ll post it on eBay; I’ll post it on face-book marketplace. I’ll post it on offer-up, I’ll post it on let-go. I’ll post it on 5 miles, I’ll post it everywhere, okay? And the reason you do that is you want as many eyeballs and possible. Let me just give you a quick example. Let’s say that you bought something and you are planning to flip it for a profit, right?
Let’s say its some trumpet, right? You find this trumpet. Now, this trumpet, you bought it for $20 at a garage sale. You look it up online and you see that average prices are 100 to $150 right? So you bought it for 40 bucks and you can sell it for 100 to $150. Now other people can go and sell it for 100 to 150. I’m not interested in that. I’m interested in selling this trumpet as a $350 masterpiece– top of the line freaking trumpet that is legendary and epic. Okay, so what I mean by that is in this, this is another little lesson for you, a very powerful lesson is don’t be bothered with what other people are selling items for, okay? You don’t want to be like everyone else. You want to be able to make as much money as humanly possible and as little time, okay? And to do that, you can’t follow how everyone else sells things, especially if you’re listening to the flipping Ninja podcast.
I don’t teach you guys to just buy. Yeah, flipping- you buy something low, you sell it for more, you made a profit and it’s like, no, that’s average. That’s what the average Joe would do who gets into flipping? I’m not interested in teaching you guys how to get average results. Okay, I’m interested in teaching you how to get disproportionate unreal results. Okay, so when I say that, that means that I want you to know how to sell items in a market down and create ads that sell not just for what the item’s worth, but for double, for a triple, for quadruple that. And I want the buyers to thank you for selling them the item. Okay, so you’re not ripping anyone off. Some people think that when you buy something and you sell it for more money than you bought it, some people think that you’re committing a crime, right?
I mean, some people think that it’s unfair and you’re scamming somebody. But the thing is that’s what business is. That’s how people have been doing business for thousands and thousands of years. I mean, that’s how literally the companies that you go to, you know, JC Penney’s, Walmart, Sears, wherever it is, they literally buy low and they come and they sell it to us for more, for profits. We don’t think they’re crooks, we don’t think they’re criminals. That’s literally how business is done. So for those of you who are like, oh that’s crazy, you’re ripping people off. It’s not like you’re scamming people and ripping people off. I mean, you’re selling something, people aren’t stupid. If they’re happily willing to pay you for it and you justified the high price and why it’s worth that much there’ll be pissed off if you don’t sell it to them, right.
So that’s what I was saying, I want you guys, I want to teach you guys how to sell things for way more than what the average person might sell it for. And part of that is part of the strategy for that is, you know, getting in front of as many eyeballs as possible. You know, octopus selling, being everywhere. Your ad should be everywhere in front of thousands of people, right? Because at that point, you know, not only do you have this killer ad that sells like crazy, you’re exposing it to thousands of people and at that point, all it takes is one person. Okay, one person to raise their hand and say, Oh my God, I’ve been looking for that trumpet since I was little. I want to buy it, when can I pick it up from you? I’ll even pay you $400 if you save it for me.
That’s all it takes. Okay, so if you post on one website, let’s say craigslist, let’s say you reach 5,000 people, well, let’s say you post on eBay, offer-up face-book marketplace as well. Suddenly you’ve reached 25,000 people, right? I actually more than that from eBay, probably reach over six figures. You probably reached like over a hundred thousand people, maybe millions even, right? But thinking about this, if you posted just on craigslist and you’ve got 5,000 people to see it, it’s very possible that all of those 5,000 people will see your ad and be like, that’s crazy, not interesting, I’m looking for something else. And they’ll say, no, they’ll pass on it, right.
But what happens when you’re suddenly in front of 25,000 people. When your awesome, epic, legendary trumpet ad is posted up for sale in front of 25,000 people, do you honestly believe that there’s not at least one person who will raise their hand, you know, runs to their phone, call you and say, when can I pick up the trumpet? I mean, I’m pretty sure you know the answer to that. Okay. And that’s what I’m saying a lot of times it is not just one person. It’s three people, four people, ten people, fifteen people who are calling you and suddenly what is that you’ve got more demand. So when you’ve got more demand, what does that mean for you? If you wanted, you can raise your price. Is this making sense to you guys? I hope I’m communicating with you in a way that makes sense and it’s not too overwhelming.
As I said, I wanted to keep these answers short but I just get carried away sometimes because I want you guys to, to learn this stuff. So, to basically to answer your question in simple terms, do you turn the items around quickly and do you sell via any websites other than craigslist? Yes, I sell them quick. Yes. I sell on a bunch of websites besides craigslist. We’re going to wrap this up and, as I said, I hope these questions were helpful to you. A lot of, I know a lot of you guys have been asking some of the same questions, so keep sending your questions in. Just let me know what your questions are. Anything related to, you know, flipping, buying and reselling, you know, where to buy things, what to look for, what, what are the best items, how to create ads that sell, how to write ads, how to take photos, like all that stuff. Whatever your questions are, let me know what they are and I will go through all of them and answer them on next week’s flipping ninja Q&A podcast.
Until next time and remember, you are always just one flip away from freedom. See you guys,
This has been the flipping Ninja podcast from the firstname.lastname@example.org we believe that all Americans should be able to make their own money without having to rely on a job. If you’re ready to ditch the nine to five, visit theflippingninja.com and join our flipping ninja blueprint masterclass where you’ll discover how to earn a reliable side income of $1000 to $5,000 a month flipping things. We’ve just five to 10 hours a week see we’re on a mission to help 100,000 people earn $1,000 a month on the side flipping things. Working professionals, students, parents, men, women, artists, techies, entrepreneurs, introverts, total newbies, you name it. Be a part of the revolution and blast out of living paycheck to paycheck once and for all at www.Theflippingninja.com. Until next time, remember, you’re just one flip away from freedom. Want to make a difference? If you enjoyed today’s show, please pay it forward and head over to iTunes. Give us a rating and leave a review so others just like you can benefit and take charge of their financial future.