If you’re like me, you know you need to clean out your basement/attic/garage, but feel daunted by what to do with all the stuff — your daughter’s long-abandoned clarinet, that lavender bridesmaid’s dress you wore ten years ago, the desktop computer you no longer use.
And when you open a storage bin to see the Furby you scrambled to put under a long-ago Christmas tree, you feel like he’s worth (sentimental) gold. Could he possibly fetch a few dollars as well? And let’s not forget the artwork or jewelry you acquired or inherited but have no interest in keeping. Sure, there’s Craigslist and eBay. But if you’d rather sell your castoffs locally, there are plenty of Western New York establishments willing to take them. Below are just a few examples in each category.
419 Elmwood Ave., Buffalo
In business since the 1970s, Benjaman Gallery conducts 70 percent of its business online through sites where sellers have to be vetted and accepted, according to gallery director Emily Tucker. This means a worldwide audience for your art. The gallery earns a commission and sellers take the proceeds.
Other galleries that purchase art include:
9490 Transit Road, East Amherst; 1022 Union Road, West Seneca; 1030 Niagara Falls Blvd., Tonawanda
Open seven days a week, Clothes Mentor describes itself as a resale, not thrift or consignment, shop. That means they will pay cash upfront for women’s clothing — misses size 0 to 26, petite and maternity — along with shoes, handbags and accessories in good condition. Sellers can expect to get about 30 to 40 percent of the store’s selling price.
810 Elmwood Ave., Buffalo; 5454 Main St., Williamsville
Second Chic carries an array of high-quality women’s and men’s clothing, alongside handbags, shoes and accessories that once belonged to someone else. If you’re interested in selling, bring your clothing to either location between the 5th and 10th of each month. If your items sell, you will receive 40 percent of the selling price in a check or 50 percent in store credit. Items remain on the floor for 90 days.
Buffalo Computer Recycling
69 Hayes Place, Buffalo
With constantly updated versions of cell phones, laptops and televisions, it’s tough to sell your old ones. However, if you want to do your part to help the environment, Buffalo Computer Recycling (BCR) accepts most computer towers, keyboards, laptops, video game systems, flat-screen TVs and phones. They don’t accept toasters, microwaves or tube-style televisions. You can drop off your electronics at no charge between the hours of 9 a.m. and 4 p.m. Monday through Friday.
There are also a couple of options for getting cash for old electronics:
Walden Galleria (near PF Chang’s); Walmart, 3290 Sheridan Drive, Amherst; Boulevard Mall (near Yognfruz)
Remarkably, there are machines around town that will spit out cash for your used cellphones, tablets and MP3 players. Part of a national company based in San Diego with some 2,200 kiosks nationwide, EcoATMs are located in malls and chain stores (including those listed above). See how much your phone might be worth by visiting Ecoatm.com.
2191 Elmwood Ave., Buffalo; 1060 Harlem Road, Cheektowaga; 10945 Olean Road, Chaffee
Established in 2007, Pawn It will accept some electronics, such as flat-screen TVs, high-end video game consoles and laptops. However, they don’t take cellphones or desktop computers. Get a quote in person or at Pawnitdeals.com.
Jewelry and Coins
Airport Plaza Jewelers
The Showroom, 4230 Union Road, Cheektowaga
Airport Plaza Jewelers has wide name recognition and it’s not just because of the advertising. For more than 20 years, owner Don Hoffman has offered instant cash for everything from gold and platinum pieces to coins. Items they purchase include antique diamonds, bracelets, charms, watches, engagement rings, gemstones, art nouveau jewelry and vintage costume jewelry. Hoffman said they buy gold “non-stop,” and Rolex watches.
Grand Gold & Silver Buyers
7166 Transit Road, Amherst
“This is where the antique dealers go to sell their gold and silver, tea sets, silverware, coins and designer jewelry because he gives the highest payout,” said Louise Simon Schoene, a West Seneca art and jewelry collector. “I have been buying and selling to owner Max Grand for many years. He is very knowledgeable.”
Kids’ Clothes and Toys
If you have gently used toys or clothing that could brighten another child’s life, think about selling them to a resale shop. Below are two of many you can find around WNY. Both accept a range of toys, baby equipment, children’s clothing and maternity clothes for cash. Tip: Don’t bring clothes in a plastic bag, which makes them wrinkle and not show as well.
497 Amherst St., Buffalo
Now in a larger location from its previous spot on Elmwood, Allentown Music offers cash upfront for instruments from guitars to keyboards (no pianos). Children’s instruments in good condition are accepted. Sellers can bring their instruments, along with photo ID, any day except Wednesday and Friday. Allentown Music also offers a consignment option.
Other stores that accept some used instruments: