We are remodeling our kitchen, remove the old cabinets and install new ones. The problem is what to do with our old cabinets? Technically speaking, the old cabinets are junks to me. Actually they are worse than junks, because if I would have to spend some money to hire a garbage collector even I want to throw them away. There is a 2nd hand market for old cabinets, I see many listings on Craigslist, the only problem is I have no idea how much my old kitchen worth.
My only reference on pricing are listings on the Craigslist. 2nd hand cabinets are selling from a few hundred bucks to a few thousands. The same set of cabinet has different value to different people. It depends on how well the cabinets fit their kitchen. On one hand, I want to get as much as I can from the old cabinet. one the other hand, I want to get rid of them before my contractor install the new cabinets. If I set the price too low, I didn’t get the most out of it. If I set the price too high, it may not be sold. Since I don’t know the market price for my cabinets, I can’t even name the right price.
My solution to the problem is to listing my cabinets as a close bid auction. I set up a time and let people come to see the cabinets, make measurements and ask questions. They write me their best offer and I simply pick the best offer at the end of the day. To make it fair, I ask them to put their offer in an envelope and I am not going to look at their bid before the end of the auction. By doing this way, I can avoid dealing with the bargain hunters and I don’t have to feel bad being ripped off for selling the cabinet too cheap.
The final price is much better than I had expected. I listed $500 as the base price. I would be happy if I can get a few hundred bucks more. Most of the offerings are around $800, but I got two offerings just over $1000. I figure the highest possible value I could get should be around $1200-1300. Since it is a best offer auction, according to auction theory the expected value of return is a bit less than the true value because the buyers would will not bet the full amount of their true value, I am quite happy for what I got.
Setting up the auction and answering emails and phone calls is time consuming. Not only that I got more money for my old cabinets, it is also a good learning experience observing how the buyers response to my auction.