Have you heard of the KonMari system? Chances are you’ve read an article about Marie Kondo’s book The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up, or heard friends talk about trying to implement the “KonMari” method at home.
The KonMari system helps people clean and organize their homes. But what if it could also help you earn extra money? Many people who have tried the KonMari system have found that the items they no longer want to keep might have value to someone else, and have followed the life-changing magic of tidying up with the money-making magic of selling used books or clothing online.
If you’re looking to earn extra money by selling your used stuff, try the KonMari method. Kondo’s book helps you quickly determine what to keep and what to get rid of, and once you have the “get rid of” pile ready to go, you can use our articles and resources to sell it for the best price! If the item doesn’t bring you joy, it might bring you cash.
What is KonMari?
The KonMari system is designed to help you declutter and tidy your living space. Kondo, a professional cleaning consultant, believes we spend too much of our lives tidying up. If you learn how to tidy the right way, she explains, you only have to tidy up once.
Kondo’s “how to tidy only once” method involves removing clutter from your home, finding a place for every item you decide to keep and returning those items to their places as soon as you are done using them. If you follow those steps, she says, your home should always be tidy.
The part of the KonMari system that has captured the most interest — and helped turn Kondo’s book into a bestseller — is the idea that you should only keep items in your home if they bring you joy.
When you are cleaning your closets and dressers, for example, Kondo suggests you should take out every item of clothing and pile it on the floor. Then you should lift up one item at a time and ask yourself if the item brings you joy.
If the item brings you joy, keep it. If not, thank the item for its service and remove it from your home.
Does KonMari Work?
Blogger J.D. Moyer says the KonMari system changed his life. We asked him if he had any advice to share with The Penny Hoarder on how to get started with KonMari, and he replied:
Remember and always come back to the core question: Does it bring me joy?
It’s easy to lose sight of that and get distracted with questions like “Will I need this?” and “Is this valuable?” The answers to those questions are already encompassed in “Does it bring me joy?” If it’s useful to you, or valuable to you, you’ll feel a positive connection with that object. If not, let it go.
If you want to start using the KonMari system, Moyer advised, take your time and don’t try to rush things. “I feel like I’m just wrapping up the whole house KonMari process after about five months,” he said. “I’m getting down to sorting and discarding cans of paint in the basement, shredding old tax documents, that sort of thing. Each category takes a lot of time and energy, so it’s important to space it out, continue to enjoy the process and not burn out. There’s no deadline.”
How Can You Use KonMari to Make Money?
Most of us probably have a lot of clothing, books and other household items that no longer bring us joy. Those items can, however, earn us money if we resell them online or sell them to consignment shops.
A recent Fashionista article on the KonMari method noted that clothing resale site Poshmark — which we’ve written about as a great place to sell used clothes — had seen a huge spike in inventory since Kondo’s book became popular. A Poshmark representative told Fashionista that “For a variety of reasons, including the popularity of methods such as KonMari, women on Poshmark are already making some serious cash this year.”
Could that be you? Some people, like Moyer, choose to donate the items that no longer bring them joy, but if you’d like to turn your used items into brand-new money, The Penny Hoarder has resources on how to sell clothes, books, toys and outdoor gear.
So, consider this addition to the KonMari method: After you are done asking if an individual item brings you joy, ask whether that item might bring someone else joy. Understandably, some of your used stuff will be destined for the trash or the recycling bin. But if you resell something to a new owner, your used item can bring both of you joy simultaneously.
Are you ready to read The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up and try the KonMari system? Even if you don’t end up sorting the cans of paint in your basement, you can still try out KonMari on a specific area of your home — say, those perpetually cluttered closets — and see if there are items you no longer want that you can resell to other people.
The more you tidy, the more money you might be able to make — and that truly is life-changing.
Your Turn: Have you read Marie Kondo’s The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up, and have you tried the KonMari method?
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Nicole Dieker is a freelance writer focusing on personal finance and personal stories. Her work has appeared in The Billfold, The Toast, Yearbook Office, The Write Life and Boing Boing.