When it comes to making money, flipping, or buying an asset and then selling it for a profit, is one of the oldest hustles in the book.
I mean, for as long as humans have been able to barter, the concept of flipping has existed. It doesn’t matter if you look at some savvy ancestor who bought and sold silk or modern flippers who deal in real estate, the concept remains the same.
The aspect I find most appealing about flipping is the fact that you can actually trade just about anything since perceived value can vary between buyers. This is how we can witness phenomenons like a Montreal man flipping his way up from a paperclip to a house in just 14 trades.
Anyway, the point is that flipping is pretty timeless, and this money making idea is here to stay…Plus, thanks to the internet and rise of Ecommerce, it has never been easier to get in on the game of buying and reselling products.
One young entrepreneur who has been incredibly successful at flipping is Nathan, the blogger behind Millionaire Dojo, and a true expert when it comes to flipping items on eBay.
I’ll let Nathan do the rest of the explaining about how he is able to make hundreds of dollars every month from his eBay store, so be sure to read this Young Money interview through to the end!
If you missed the first Young Money interview featuring Kyle from Financial Wolves and his website selling hustle, be sure to read that one as well!
About Nathan & Millionaire Dojo:
My name is Nathan. I’m 25, married, and live about an hour outside of Atlanta, GA. I like to work and try new side hustles to generate new streams of income but outside of that, I love to learn new things and also train in martial arts.
I started training in Taekwondo at age 15 and eventually received my black belt. About a month ago, I decided to switch things up and start training in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. It’s been fun/humbling to start out as a white belt again, and grappling is truly a great workout!
I find a lot of value in martial arts. From my training, I’m able to get a good workout, stay limber, develop more discipline and focus, and also learn how to defend myself if I ever need to.
I’m also a bit of a personal finance nerd, and I made a goal to eventually reach a net worth of one million dollars. I started tracking my progress towards reaching this goal by creating Millionaire Dojo, where I share any financial tips and adivce I pick up along the way.
My wife probably thinks my earbuds are permanently attached to my head at this point. I’m always listening to podcasts when I get the chance! I’ve become somewhat addicted to learning new things and podcasts are the best way to learn that I’ve come across.
I work remotely in IT for my day job (no, I’m not the stereo typical software developer/personal finance blogger, and I don’t make software developer level income either).
I like my job, especially the work from home part, but I definitely don’t see myself working in IT for another 40 years. I’d like to eventually work for myself doing something I love!
What Side Hustle/Business Did You Start?
My side hustle of choice is selling items on eBay. I also have a couple of antique booths at an antique mall where I make money. You can checkout my eBay store to get an idea about the sorts of items I sell every month!
I love the process of going out and finding new items, as well as learning the history of things when I come across something I don’t know about.
The amount of waste in America is astronomical, and I hope I’m doing a small part to help the environment by keeping things from ending up in landfills.
I get most of my store inventory from yard sales and thrift stores, so that’s basically one step away from the item being thrown away! It’s amazing how much value some of the items I find still have to certain people!
I’d love to eventually sell things full time, but I’m still a good ways away from being able to live off the income produced by my store.
When & Why Did You Start?
I sold my first item on eBay when I was about 13 and ever since, I’ve always thought: “hey, I wonder what that would go for on eBay?” when I come across something that seems like a good deal.
I didn’t start seriously selling on eBay until a little over a year ago. It was around the same time I learned about financial independence and started my blog. I went through a bit of a minimalist phase and went through our house looking for items I could get rid of. Some of the things I found had a bit of value, so I figured I should try to sell them and make some money.
After a few of the items sold, I thought it might be worth seeing if I could find some items to buy for cheap and flip for profit. After I started seeing some success with flipping, I got hooked!
Thanks to my eBay store, I’ve been able to consistently make an extra $600-$1,000 a month net profit for the past several months, and I’m hoping to continue increasing this amount as time goes on.
Since I’m able to cover our regular living expenses with my day job income, I’m currently using my eBay flipping income to invest back into other side hustles I have so I can continue to grow.
I’ve funded all of my blogging expenses from my eBay sales, and I’ve been able to grow the blog enough now that I’m making a little money from it.
At this rate, if I keep growing my side hustles I’ll be able to live off the income they produce within a couple of years, if not sooner. The blogging income has been slow growing for me, but I actually started profiting from eBay within the first month of starting!
Spending money in the right places can really speed up the process of scaling your side business, so it’s nice to have money to invest from day one.
Wins & Losses:
My biggest win so far with selling things on eBay was when some people offered me a box of junk for free when I was at a yard sale.
I didn’t really know what the stuff in the box was since it just looked like some old electronics, but when I got home and did some research, it turned out to be rare CB radio equipment.
I ended up profiting over $700 from that box of junk, and the people at the yard sale said they were going to throw it away if I didn’t take it!
I can’t really think of a huge loss with this side hustle. I lose a little money every now and then if an item breaks in shipping or someone wants to do a return. Sometimes I buy things that aren’t worth anything, and I end up having to donate them to thrift stores.
Overall, I don’t lose much money from this side hustle at all!
What Advice Do You Have For Other Young Entrepreneurs?
If you’re already working full-time but want to increase your income, pick a side hustle that you really love spending time on.
It takes time to build a solid income with most side businesses, and having fun in the early stages will help you pull through to become successful and to avoid burnout.
What I would do on day one of starting a new side hustle is to create a new bank account just for your hustle. This makes it a lot easier to keep track of your income/expenses and will help you at tax time as well!
If you’re thinking about starting to sell on eBay specifically, my advice is to just put in the work until you’ve got several hundred listings. I’ve currently got about 500 listings in my store, so if I want to take it easy, I can take a bit of a break and the sales still continue to come in.
You probably won’t sell things very often until you get a decent size inventory. It takes time and effort up front, but once you get a bunch of listings, you can hit the brakes a little if you want.
Also, if you’re really serious about selling items on eBay, I suggest taking a look at my post on Easy Auctions Tracker.
Easy Auctions Tracker lets me import every eBay transaction from my store, and allows me to quickly calculate my net profit for each sale. This software allows me to save time and increase accuracy in my bookkeeping, so it’s a no brainer!
Ultimately as long as you work hard on something you care about and don’t give up, you can succeed!
If you asked most people what an extra $500-$1,000/month would do for their financial situation, I bet you’d have a lot of positive feedback.
To me, the fact that Nathan has taken successfully scaled a side business to such a level (and in a very short period of time) is truly inspirational. I’m still grinding away at my own blogging business to try and reach some consistent four-figure numbers, and I think learning from successful entrepreneurs who are going through the motions of growing their own business is very valuable.
I mean, Nathan was able to build his eBay store while working a full-time job and learning how to blog. There’s really no excuse for not having enough time; if you want something badly enough, you will make it happen.
However, I want to highlight one key piece of advice that Nathan outlined in this interview: play to your strengths and do something you enjoy.
Starting a side business while working full-time is exhausting, so you need to work with the skills you have and ideally put your effort into something that brings you joy. This will allow you to push through the months (or years) where you aren’t making that much money and to fend off the creeping sense of doubt that is the natural enemy of entrepreneurship.
Anyways, I’d just like to thank Nathan for taking the time to contribute to the second ever interview in the Young Money series!
And, as a side note, you really need to checkout his blog.
I’ve been blogging friends with Nathan since around last September, and in that time, he’s produced nothing but stellar, honest content that is hard to come by in the personal finance space. If you’re looking for a new blog to add to your reading list, definitely check him out and subscribe!
Anyways, that’s all for this post!
I hope you enjoyed, and I’ll catch you in the next one!
Nathan is the founder of Millionaire Dojo – a website that documents his journey to reaching a million dollar net worth so that others may be inspired to follow the same path. He and his wife reached a net worth of one hundred thousand by the age of 25 and has been featured in Business Insider. His blog focuses on practical advice that can be implemented immediately in the form of saving money, earning more, and investing to create passive income.