Cash for clothes isn't money for old rope
YOU’VE HEARD of “cash in the attic” or “cash for gold”, but are you ready for the latest money-generating scheme – “cash for clothes”? By selling unwanted clothes that may no longer fit or are simply out of fashion, you could replenish your wallet and maybe make enough to stave off the impact of the forthcoming budget.
But how much might those old pairs of Levis make for you – and might there be a more charitable destination for your unwanted garments? And what are the other options for “monetising” your wardrobe?
Over the past 12 months a number of operators have opened up such shops all around the country, including Cash for Clothes, which operates from a depot in Sallins, Co Kildare; Get Cash4Clothes, which has numerous branches in Dublin and around the country, including in Nenagh, Athy and Ennis, and We Buy Clothes, which has 30 branches across the country.
Typically, you can expect to bring along bags of unwanted clothes, get them weighed in the shop and walk out with some cash. Many of the shops also offer to collect clothes, but they might require you to have a minimum weight for collection or, if not, you can expect to be paid less.
You will need a significant amount of clothes if you want to boost your income, given that you can expect to make anywhere from just 50 cent up to €1 for 1kg, depending on where you go.
If you don’t have any idea what various items might weigh, Pricewatch has weighed some typical items to give you an idea of how much you might get for them.
A leather handbag, for example, weighs about 1kg, a pair of jeans is about 600g and a pair of runners comes in at about 800g.
Based on these prices, 10 pairs of jeans might earn you the grand sum of between €3 and €6.
Pillows and duvets are typically excluded, but most shops take in a wide range of items including soft toys, belts and sheets. If you’re looking to boost your return, a pair of old curtains for example might be a good idea, given how heavy they can be.
If you have too many clothes and other goods, there can be a dual upside to selling them – decluttering your home while making some money. Beforehand, however, you might also want to consider where your goods actually end up.
Given the buoyant second-hand clothing market across eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union, these are frequent destinations for unwanted Irish goods, as is Asia. Typically, depending on the condition, clothes might be either completely broken down and recycled, or sold on as is.
With such a proliferation of outlets, you can expect that buyers of your goods are making a tidy margin on their purchases. Pricewatch asked one operator where the goods he bought ended up, but was told the final destination of the clothing was “sensitive information” that he “wouldn’t like to divulge”.
Another consideration to bear in mind – particularly if you might only might end up with €3 from a couple of handbags – is that by selling on your goods in this way, particularly those in better condition, you might be depriving charity shops of some much-needed stock they can turn into cash.