With our upcoming return to the States, I’m up against a challenge…
We have certain household items that need to be sold. We don’t want to do without them until the very last minute, but that doesn’t leave much time to haggle.
Giving it all away is NOT an option.
This proves problematic when up against variables such a market saturation, demand, and other nifty things I learned in business school…
One afternoon, I popped into a pawn shop by our house to inquire how much the second-hand market could bare such items. After giving the clerk a quick description, I asked what he’d be able to offer for them… just a ballpark figure.
The clerk refused, insisting that I first bring in the items before we discuss pricing.
I quickly explained my situation– moving back to American right away, don’t have much time, need to know the best way to sell this stuff, I just live around the corner, blah, blah, blah.
They were still, “No. No. No.”
“Look,” I said, “I’m not going to hold you to the price. If I come back and you don’t think it’s worth the higher end, I won’t make a fuss. I just need a ballpark figure to work with… an idea of what this stuff is worth used.”
Then it dawned on me…
“Wait. Do you even know what I mean when I say ‘ballpark figure’?”
The clerk smiled meekly and shook his head.
“OH! I’m so sorry (thunk!) It’s just an American phrase. Ballparks are… Okay, nevermind. Look, again this is our situation… I just want to get your opinion on what you think these items are worth should I try to sell them.”
“So you want a range, like an estimate?”
“YES! Exactly. A RANGE! An ESTIMATE! Can you give me a range?”
By the way, there was a time in my life when I would have been absolutely appalled to be living so near to a pawn shop. Like… six months ago when I lived in the suburbs.
Oh, how city life has made me tough…