The Doll House Deal? Barters, Blunders & Big Bucks…

It’s not uncommon to have a fairly unique trade proposition come in through The Pawning Planners.

In fact it’s a regular occurrence but Saturday’s barter had the Texas Twins doing a bit of research in the unknown territory of not only doll houses but also miniature furniture and accessories.

I was initially interested in this trade for my grandniece, Maddy but concerned about shipping this item without damaging it to Point Hueneme, CA.

After realizing that antique doll houses are worth hundreds and even thousands of dollars though Cindy and I decided to flip it.

We don’t always list bartered items at our EBay storefront, Texas Twins Treasures to sell them.

Why? Because buyers never factor freight which is often equal or more of the cost of the item.

EBay frequently misleads buyers who assume local pick up is free delivery. Local pick up is also at our location not yours.

I’ve been clarifying this confusion over free delivery since 2009 which is why I occasionally list on FB and Craigslist instead.

The ongoing argument regarding freight costs with “newbies” on EBay. If you want it expect to pay freight in order to get it.

EBay and PayPal fees are a requirement and expense to sellers. EBay even has final value fees for whatever the item sold for which adds another additional cost to the seller. Am I sick of EBay selling? Yes. Which is why I frequently sell on Etsy, FB and Craigslist.

Local buyers can come and pick up items from our warehouse in West Fort Worth or at my home in Westover Hills or Cindy’s home in Weatherford.

Cindy and I began flipping items “straight out of our warehouse” in 2014 to save space.

Storing items isn’t free. Our storage fees the past 7 years alone are over $9k. Why so high? Climate controlled storage to prevent damage to antiques.

Collin County isn’t too far from my location so I made an appointment to walk the trade on the doll house.

Cindy stayed in Weatherford shipping our latest Chanel & LV face masks. We’ve sold out twice and have 79 other buyers anxiously awaiting our latest inventory.

Designer face mask sales literally exploded about three weeks ago for the Texas Twins.

Why? Well this latest idea came to me after trying to buy masks on my own. I didn’t like the fabrics or the quality was lacking. I walked to one of my 6 closets. Six? Yes, I have 6 closets of designer clothing from a 25 year career in modeling. Don’t be shocked I love designer clothing.

I began sending text photos to Cindy on what to cut up. I had bought Chanel logo sheets for Cindy years ago she never used so she had a full King sheet set. I had 14 LV scarves and a Chanel one piece bathing suit with matching duster cover up. Due to the demand of orders, we hired 3 seamstresses in our area. All 3 were out of work due to Covid-19. They were thrilled for an opportunity to earn $12-15 dollars per mask. Our designer masks will be back in stock in 10 days. Prices range from $50-60 each with free standard shipping. Please be patient as we are no longer taking deposits. Why? We must fill existing orders first.

I had done a bit of research on antique doll houses prior to making the drive to my appraisal appointment. Antique doll houses worth the most are in original condition. This client also had fully furnished the doll house with beds, living room furniture and even patio furniture. I was particularly intrigued by the sterling silver miniature fireplace set. I’d found one on google and had an idea of the value.

The best way to flip this house would be by selling the interior items separately.

I loved the detail of the front of the house. My client and I struck a deal within twenty minutes. The service? A TDCJ Wedding at Torres Unit that includes bridal photography with my extensive inventory of veils, bouquets, tiaras, fascinators, summer hats and fun signs.

All of my clients marrying an inmate LOVE photo shoots with my team. Why? Because we bring the fun that’s why. The only thing clients need to bring is themselves.

I bring enough inventory for up to 10 guests.

Of course they can bring friends or family to wait while we are inside them join us at the photo shoot often near Units.

I decided to list the doll house while on location with my new client.

Surprisingly, before even making it back to Fort Worth, the doll house sold for $625. I had listed it just to test the waters on what buyers were willing to spend not expecting a customer from Mineral Wells to buy the house flat out.

By the time I made it home and started listing the interior pieces holding back the sterling silver fireplace set, my new friend in Mineral Wells also wanted to buy the interior pieces too. As is condition.

I decided to list the sterling silver fireplace set on another site though. I held back this really rare set knowing it could be worth more than the doll house or the interior pieces combined and I was right. Sold it!

Now to find a doll house for Maddy. There are a number of new ones on the market. Frankly, Maddy’s mom wouldn’t want an antique. Why? “They are dusty and dirty. I don’t want that kind of stuff in my house.”

Oh well, not everyone shares Leigh Ann’s opinion that newer is better and neither do I. Antiques have a rich history. This doll house was well loved. Most everything in my home and office is antique.

My home office is anchored by an 1800 King Henry desk adorned by brass angels and ornamentation. This rare piece was taken in trade back in 2010 and continues to be my most treasured piece. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had a client try to buy it from me. But it’s not for sale.

Tomorrow I’m due at Wallace-Ware Unit for a wedding so I must run and call to confirm with the Unit.

From Trades to Trash or Treasure Cindy and I have had a wild ride of flips and flops but now and again we’ve been lucky enough to barter more Treasure than Trash.

“Success doesn’t grow without planting the seeds of effort and watering your own garden.” Cindy Daniel

Part of the reason for our success is research. The other part is experience. Bartering or flipping isn’t for everyone. You won’t always hit a lick. You need items people want and you need to know the value.

“Success starts with determination and a goal. Consequently, failure begins with chaos and a wish.” Cindy Daniel

Good luck to all of our friends, followers and sellers…