Ever feel stuck when it comes to side hustle ideas? We have a new one for you that you might have not thought of ever before! 

We recently spoke with someone who is making money in a creative way. Always inspired by how people earn extra cash or supplement their incomes (We did start a podcast about Studentpreneurs after all), we want to share this real life story with you. 

Meet, Jan!

Side hustle case study - flipping college furniture.

Jan finds free furniture.

Jan is tapping into an opportunity that few of us have embarked on before. Jan is flipping college furniture! 

Believe it or not, his profit on this side-hustle is impressive. 

What are the numbers on flipping college furniture? 

In Jan’s case, he is earning between $500 – $1,000 a month! That is pure profit. His overhead includes a garage that averages $60 a month and driving a car to pick up the furniture which average less than $8 each trip. With minimal overhead, Jan is able to sell his lightly repurposed pieces at a reasonable rate and still make a great profit. 

College student using furniture.

College students use furniture temporarily.

How does Jan flip college furniture? 

  1. He picks up the discarded furniture from the streets
  2. He takes photos of the furniture found 
  3. He stores the furniture in the garage
  4. Places the images and prices on Facebook Marketplace
  5. Once he sells a piece, he delivers the furniture for an extra $15 

What rates can you sell repurposed college furniture? 

Check your local rates on spaces like Facebook Marketplace, Craigslist, or eBay to help inform the rates you set. In Jan’s experience, he is able to charge about $50 for a single bed and $75 for a double. To help him store the pieces, Jan rents a storage garage. In this storage unit he is able to keep about 10 pieces. He is constantly restocking with new pieces. 

If he sells one full garage worth of pieces, he has made roughly $500. Since he often sells pieces quickly, he is able to make more than $500. 

A simple add on that increases his profit is charging for delivery. For students who need their new furniture delivered, Jan charges an extra $15. 

How often can you sell repurposed college furniture? 

You can sell college furniture at any time. Although the challenge comes with the supply of free furniture. The supply of used college furniture is based on the academic calendar. While you may be able to find free pieces at the end of a fall semester, it is more likely that you’d be able to find a plethora of furniture at the end of the spring semester. 

College students returning to school are in need of furniture. Capitalising on the influx of students at the start of the fall semester (occasionally start of the spring) can be incredibly profitable for you. Keep in mind, that you don’t have to sell to just college students. Try selling the repurposed furniture elsewhere to make a profit during other seasons. 

Cozy college dorm

Recycle unwanted college furniture and help new students make their dorms feel more like home.

How does Jan not have to pay for the furniture he flips? 

Jan understands that many college students leave furniture behind at the end of the semester. If they are unable to sell the pieces, they will store them outside–making them free to the community. Understanding your local college’s academic calendar, can keep you aware of dates when free furniture may be lining the streets of apartment complexes around the local college. 

Another resource he uses to source the furniture is Facebook groups. While many of us use Facebook Marketplace, you can connect with groups on Facebook where people give items away for FREE. Search for terms like, “free stuff + city” or “free items + city” on Facebook. You can pick up the items, freshen them up (if need be), then turn around and resell on Facebook Marketplace. 

You can follow Jan on Instagram @thatguyvasary. 

For more side-hustle inspiration, check out The Studentpreneur Show