Forget cash in the attic, this article is all about cash in the closet, and how you can sell your old clothes for cash. Recently we covered the best side hustles for earning extra cash, now we turn our attention to your wardrobe.
The years default option was to always to sell on eBay but the hassle involved meant it usually wasn’t worthwhile for less expensive items. Fortunately for those looking to earn cash from their old clothing, there are a number of specialist site you can use.
Knowing what to sell and where is the key to getting the best value for the clothes. We’ve compiled this guide to ease you through the process and help you get the most cash for your clothes.
Where to get cash for clothes?
If you’re looking to sell or otherwise get rid of old clothes for cash, there are three main options.
- High street retailers including H&M, M&S, Asda and more
- Online market places such as eBay, Facebook Market Place, and Gumtree
- Cash for clothes companies such as Cash4clothes, webuyanyclothes
Where can I get cash for clothes on the high street?
Probably the easiest but also the least rewarding financially is to drop off clothes are various high street stores. We’ve listed stores with active reward schemes in the section below. With major brands such as H&M, M&S, and John Lewis all running clothes recycling schemes it should be relatively easy to find a cash for clothes programme near you.
H&M clothes recycling – £5 per bag
H&M has been running its ‘close the loop’ clothes recycling scheme since 2013. Donate any bag of unwanted clothes at your local H&M store and you’ll be given a £5 voucher to spend.
What’s great about the scheme is that the clothes don’t need to be H&M products, in fact they don’t have to be clothes at all. Any kind of textile is accepted from bedsheets to bras, all fabrics are recycled.
As the vouchers are earned per bag of clothes you can in theory earn multiple vouchers, but it’s worth keeping in mind that each voucher requires a minimum £25 spend, and you can’t stack them. It’s one voucher per transaction.
Schuh – £5 voucher
Schuh’s ‘sell your soles’ scheme rewards customers with a £5 voucher for each pair of shoes they donate. The voucher can be redeemed immediately on all purchases over £35.
The scheme is run by Recyclatex who collects the donations from Schuh stores. Footwear that is in good enough condition to be reworn is sold to third world countries to provide a small business opportunity for impoverished families. Items that can’t be resold are recycled to avoid landfill.
It’s worth pointing out that if you a decent pair of shoes or trainers, you may get more for them by selling online, especially branded pairs such as Nike Air, Converse, Dr Martin etc..
John Lewis – £5 off a £20 spend
John Lewis’ fashion cycle scheme is offering £5 off any homeware or fashion purchase (over £20) made that day when you donate five items of used clothing.
Items can include shirts, t-shirts, trousers, dresses. A full list of what is accepted is available on the John Lewis website.
This offer only applies to ‘My John Lewis’ members, but membership is free, so could be worth it if there is a specific item you want from the department store.
ASDA – 10% off George
Drop a bag of 10 or more unwanted clothes off at participating Asda supermarkets and you’ll get a 10% off code to be used at George.
The items can be clothing, shoes or home textiles regardless of their condition. Accessories such as handbags are also accepted.
Not all stores are participating so be sure to check their website first.
Selling old clothes online
If you have good quality branded clothes, dresses, suits, shoes and accessories, you’ll likely get far more for them selling via online marketplace. For example Schuh offers a £5 discount for trading in a used pair of shoes or trainers, but if you had a used pair of Converse All Stars, in decent condition you could earn between £12-£20 selling them on eBay.
The downside of online market places, is that it’s time-consuming listing clothes, writing descriptions, and taking photos. That’s before you factor in dealing with questions from potential customers. As such this method is best suited to selling higher priced items.
Where can I sell my clothes online?
For years the default choice for selling used clothes. Its mammoth audience is the main draw here, and for rare or collectable items, its global listing and shipping can see you reach audiences you wouldn’t normally have access to.
While it’s known for its auctions, selling with a ‘buy it now’ price is increasing popular and is the safest way to ensure you get the best value for more premium clothing.
For old clothes that don’t have much value and that you just want rid of, then an auction starting at 99p is the way to go.
Normally listing are free, but you pay a fee when your item sells. This used to be 10% of the final value but has now risen to 12.8%, so that nice coat that you sold for £50 will see you return £43.60 as eBay will take a £6.40 fee. What’s worse is that the fee is charges not only on the price of the item sold but also on the cost of postage.
TIP: Look out for special £1 listing weekends and promotions. This can save you hundreds in fees on higher priced items.
The local Facebook Marketplace now one of the best ways to sell collection only items. It’s completely free, so as long as you have a Facebook account you can list your items.
You won’t have as wide as audience as eBay, but it saves the hassle of delivery, and gets you cash in your hand. It’s particularly useful for bundles of kids clothing, toys and accessories.
The main drawback is having deal with a lot of basic questions and queries from people who haven’t read your listing properly or are trying haggle on price. It can be a real downer and some of the people can be a little strange to say the least.
On that note we should quickly address safety. Don’t post items to strangers, get paid in cash, and don’t meet people in random places for exchanges, and don’t give out or let strangers into your home for collection unless you are comfortable.
Cash for clothes website and stores – sell clothes by weight
These stores and websites are great for when you have large amount of clothing to get rid of. Perhaps from a house move, downsize, or unfortunately even a death. Clothing can be packed into recyclable plastic bags, and either dropped off or collected as you prefer.
Cash for clothes companies tend to pay by the kilo, and many even offer free, but it’s not just a simple as throwing your old items in a bag. For one, they can be very fussy about items they accept. Clothes must be clean, folded, and in good sellable condition free from tears, homemade repairs, or obvious wear such as bobbling, fading etc..
How much does cash for clothes pay?
You can expect to earn roughly 50p per kilo. A typical bin bag full of clothes is likely to weigh in the region of 7-10kg and so you can expect to earn between £3.50-£5 per bag.
There have been reports of some of these companies being particularly fussy. Rejecting clothes after inspection, or offering a lower value.
It can be a bit of a minefield, as such we recommend only using companies that will pay out on the spot. Below we’ve listed a few of the cash for clothes companies that our readers consider reliable.
One way to avoid any unexpected surprises is to drop off clothes at one of your local independent cash for clothes facility. There aren’t really any national brands, so just search ‘cash for clothes Aberdeen’ or ‘cash for clothes London’ etc.. to find somewhere near to you.
What do cash for clothes do with the clothes?
Most cash for clothes companies re-sell the clothes to other companies in the re-use/recycle industry. These secondary companies then either recycle the clothes, sell them on again to be recycled, or use them in projects such as providing saleable stock for businesses in third world countries.
Don’t forget charity shops
Yes, you won’t get any money for your clothes, but you get to declutter and feel good about it at the same time. Many local charity shops are desperate for donations and clothing is usually their best-selling item, particularly jackets and shoes.
So if you don’t really need that £5 H&M voucher, or can live without the £3.50 you you’d get from ‘cash4clothes’, then please consider your local charity shops.