Selling your clothes through a consignment store is a good way to make extra cash, but what if you could sell your stuff without leaving your house? That’s where thredUP comes in.
The thredUP app puts a thrift store in your pocket by letting you sell women’s and children’s clothing and accessories to declutter your space while making money — all without much effort.
How Does thredUP Work?
Unlike other apps like OfferUp and Facebook Marketplace, there’s no heavy lifting on your part with thredUP. All you have to do is go through a few simple steps to complete the thredUP process:
- Order Your Clean Out Kit
- Pack Up Your Items
- Send in Your Bag And Wait for Processing
- Wait for Items To Go Through the Bidding Window
- Monitor Your Items
- Get Your Payout
1. Order Your Clean Out Kit
Create an account or log in to thredUP. Then, on the homepage of the thredUP app, tap the “Clean Out” tab under the search bar.
Scroll down to find the black “Sell” and “Donate” buttons.
If you want to get rid of clothes and don’t care about making money, you can opt for the donation bag to do something good for others.
ThredUP gives $5 to a partner charity of your choice for every bag that you donate, plus you’ll get a donation tax receipt for each bag. Men’s clothes are not normally accepted by thredUP, but can be sent as part of a donation.
To sell your clothes, click “Sell” on the Clean Out page.
You can choose to order a Clean Out Bag from thredUP or get a shipping label emailed to you. Both of these options are free and have pre-paid shipping.
Once you select the type of bag you want, you can opt for return assurance. Return assurance means that thredUP will send back any clothes to you if you have second thoughts about letting go, have items that are not accepted from your kit, or have items that don’t sell during consignment.
Opting in to return assurance costs about $11, which will be deducted from your processed bag earnings. Unless you have extremely high-value items that are like new, it’s probably better to let your items go for good.
While selling on thredUP is free, you’ll have to wait a few weeks for your bag to be processed.
Expediting your bag will get your clothes processed faster, but it comes with a $16 price tag that’s deducted from your earnings.
Whatever you choose will help you get rid of extra clothes and declutter your closet.
Enter your address, then select “Next.”
Now review thredUP’s quality standards to make sure that the clothes you want to send comply. The app gives examples of how much you could make from certain items and the payout percentages based on an item’s price.
Click “Get My Kit.” Now you’ll see your next steps based on the options you chose.
I opted to get a thredUP bag, to keep the standard processing time and to not get return assurance.
I made these choices so that I could earn the maximum amount from the items in my thredUP bag. Throughout the thredUP process, keep an eye on your email for important updates regarding your kit.
2. Pack Up Your Items
If you choose to get a shipping label emailed to you, you can start packing up your items right away.
When choosing items for your Clean Out Kit, you can look up thredUP’s payout estimates based on brand, category and sample listings.
Your clothes are more likely to be accepted if they are clean and in-season. When considering this, factor in the processing time thredUP gave you when you ordered your kit.
If you choose to get a kit mailed to you, you’ll get a tracking email with your kit number when thredUP ships it to you. When your bag arrives, it’s time to pack up your clothes!
I put nine items into my bag:
- 2 pairs of shoes
- 2 pairs of pants
- 2 pairs of shorts
- 1 sweater
- 1 dress
- 1 shirt
I didn’t realize how big the bag would be, but I could have fit a lot more into it if I had more items to clean out of my closet.
The brands I included in my bag were:
At the time of this review, thredUP listed all items for 90 days on their platform before returning or recycling unsold merchandise. ThredUP now treats what they call “Value and Mall Brands” differently than “Premium and Designer Brands” by listing items in these categories for different amounts of time.
Value brands are only listed for 60 days, compared to premium brands that are listed for 90 days. Value brands include items from Target, Gap and Nike, while premium brands include J. Crew, Lululemon and Gucci.
ThredUP states that it typically accepts about 40% of items in a Clean Out Bag. Any unaccepted items are either recycled or resold apart from the main shop to recoup money. You don’t receive any payout from unaccepted items.
3. Send in Your Bag And Wait for Processing
Once all of your items are packed up, it’s time to seal your package and send it off!
If you got a shipping label, attach it to the box with your clothes in it and securely tape it closed.
The thredUP bag comes with a shipping label on it and you can schedule a free USPS pickup or drop it off at a post office or FedEx store.
When the bag is in transit, you’ll get another tracking email. This email is your last chance to change your mind about return assurance. It’s also your last chance to change your bag to a donation instead.
When thredUP receives your kit, you’ll get another email notification with a time estimate on when your items will be processed. The estimate varies based on the influx of items thredUP is processing at the time.
My estimate stated that my bag would be processed about three weeks after it had been received, however, it was actually processed in about a week.
Processing includes a detailed item evaluation and professional photography for accepted items that are listed by thredUP.
Once your items have been processed, you’ll get another email and any of your accepted pieces will be posted for sale.
4. Wait for Items To Go Through the Bidding Window
After items are accepted, you have 12 hours to adjust the initial listing price. Then the 12-hour bidding window begins.
You cannot adjust the price during this time, but if your item receives a bid, your payout goes up accordingly.
If an item doesn’t receive bids, it will be listed and you can adjust the price as you wish.
5. Monitor Your Items
You can monitor your items from each Clean Out Kit that thredUP processes for you in the “Selling” tab in the “Account” section of the thredUP app. Then click on the kit you want to check on for further details.
Of the nine items I submitted, only three were accepted for consignment. I was a little disappointed, but that number does align with thredUP’s disclaimer that they typically only accept about 40% of items in a Clean Out Kit.
They accepted the athletic shoes and both pairs of shorts that I sent in. All of the items were in-season and labeled as “Like new” or “Gently worn” and assigned a sale value by thredUP.
You can change the price of your consignment items if you think thredUP misjudged their value. Just click “Edit price” and adjust it to your liking. The key here is to set a reasonable price while maximizing your earnings.
At the time of this review, the two pairs of shorts I sent in were priced in the lowest tier of thredUP’s pricing structure, meaning that I would earn 5% of what each item sold for.
However, I thought that my pair of green shorts from LOFT could fetch slightly more. I bumped up the price just enough to push it into the second tier so that if the shorts sold, I’d earn 10% of the sale rather than 5%.
ThredUP has changed its pricing structure since I sold my items on their platform. You can see the current payout table here:
So what’s the deal with these numbers and earning money?
You’ll know when someone has one of your items in their cart because it’s marked “Reserved” in your account. Once one of your items is purchased it’s marked “Sold.”
If the buyer decides to keep it, earnings from the item will be posted to your account. The buyer has 14 days to return the item and if they do, it goes back up for sale.
If an item is sold and then returned, thredUP resets the item’s consignment window. If an item sells a second time, you’ll be paid immediately.
If an item doesn’t sell within the set timeframe, you won’t be paid for it. If you didn’t choose return assurance, any unsold items will be recycled or sold later by thredUP.
6. Get Your Payout
You can use your earnings toward a thredUP purchase or cash out via PayPal or Stripe direct deposit.
PayPal payouts come with a 2% transfer fee but are available in your account immediately.
Stripe direct deposits the amount you indicate from your thredUP earning minus a $0.25 plus 1.5% transfer fee.
You have one year to claim earnings before they are automatically turned into a thredUP gift card.
You’ll need an account with either of these services in order to claim your cash. Either way, you’ll put money in your pocket from the clothes that were cluttering up your closet.
So Is thredUP Worth It? Here’s My Review.
This experience was extremely easy to navigate, but it required patience. ThredUP gives you precise instructions and plenty of information as you go through the cleanout process, but finding out when my payout would be available was a guessing game.
After about a month of my items being listed, two of my items were marked “Sold” but no earnings had been posted to my account, so I contacted customer service via the chat feature in the app.
They couldn’t answer my question right away but sent a comprehensive answer with the timeline for my earnings about an hour and a half later.
My total earnings were much lower than I initially expected, but I didn’t have to do any work beyond sending in my clothes and checking my account for updates.
I got the most money that I could out of my bag by skipping the big fees like an expedited kit and return assurance.
Note that this process was done directly through thredUP and not via a partner, which works a little differently.
If you have high-quality items and want a convenient consignment experience, thredUP might be the answer you’re looking for.
The app doesn’t necessarily pay a lot, but you can earn money from thredUP as opposed to donating your items via an establishment like Goodwill, where you wouldn’t be paid anything.
ThredUP is ideal if you want to get a little extra from clothes you’re getting rid of, but don’t need the cash right away.
Have you used thredUP or another app to sell your clothes and make extra money? Scroll down to the comments section below to leave your review!