Archive for November, 2013


Let’s talk about cell phone stores.  Their prime income area is the contract for two years.  They make huge profits every month for at least 24 months, even though they offer a phone for so-called free or a reduced price.  This is marketing to get you to buy the service contract.  That is their goal — ongoing profit for at least 24 months from one sale.  Accessories are an added bonus to them where their profit margins are over 1,000%.  Buyers are lazy and in most cases uneducated.  They pay $30-$35 for a car charger because they think the quality is better and it saves them time.  Not so — Today there are more and more choices with where to buy a phone — Ebay, Craigslist, flea markets, friends, etc. and finding the same quality and/or better service with no contract like Straight Talk for Smart phones and I-phones.  The cost is $45 plus tax per month with unlimited everything.  For basic talk and text, H2O online is $30 per month, no contract, no fees, no taxes and they run off of AT&T and Verizon towers.  Both Straight Talk and H2O services are great.  You can save yourself a lot of money.  I switched out service from AT&T on two phones and was paying $100 a month — but now have H2O and am now paying $60 as month and saving $40 a month.  I did my research.  Remember research and planning take time and makes and/or saves you money.

Both Straight Talk and H2O offer auto pay on a credit or debit card and you casn use your own phone (just need a Sim card) and you can port your number as well.  All of this can be done online.  On service for phones, basically, there is none.  Companies do not repair them like they used to.  If under a warranty, they replace them or send them out somewhere to a so-called repair center.  Then they are done with them.  After the warranty is expired, you are on your own.  If you are having a problem with your phone, find a local repair shop if possible or replace it.  Today, everything is made cheap and disposable.  You can with research find older model phones that are well made and last for 10-20 years or longer.   I purchased an AT&T contractor flip phone in 2001 and just sold it in 2013.  It worked perfect with the original battery and I sold it for $50 at the flea market.  Back then, the phone was free.  The service cost for 700 minutes a month with 19% taxes was $50 x 12 months which equals $600 a year x 12 years which equals $7,200 for service and a free phone.  Some free phone!  I was a dummy just like most people out there but no more.  Currently, I bought a Rugby 847 from Ebay for $33.  When I unlocked it, it was like new condition that is made to last for another 10-20 years with a no contract cell phone service from H2O for $30 a month — no taxes, no fees.

The point being — do your research on everything before you buy or sell.  This advice is free for your use to prove a point.  Some people will use it and make money and/or save money.  Those are the smart people.  Some will do nothing and continue to be taken to the cleaners and then just complain.  Your choice — be smart or be a dummy — you decide.

Have a safe and happy holiday.  Hopefully, flea market sales in 2014 will improve.



Results for the season in the Northern States:  Economy has hit flea markets as well; sales were less than in 2012.  Money is getting tight.  Professional vendors are only buying real deals in smaller amounts and they know their prices.  So selling large deals of merchandise to vendors has gone by the wayside in most cases; and if the price isn’t rock bottom, they do not buy.  They are not doing the business they did in prior years.  Their money is also tight.  In talking to vendors that travel to different markets all the time, they seem to fair a lot better in higher sales.  They have large displays and rent 2-4 spots at each market; moving around where buyers do not see you at the same market every week seems to work for them.  For example:  one vendor I know and talk with on a regular basis specializes in smart phone covers for almost every phone made and also sells car chargers and pouches for current and older model phones.  He stocks over 200 different cell phone case covers for almost ever smart phone made.  He has a family affair with his wife and 4 kids all working the tables.  He has 5-6 people, moves to different markets every Sunday–some local–some out of town and states his sales are close to 2012 numbers.   He buys stores going out of business for pennies on the dollar and buys the entire lot.  He researches for bargains, store closings, etc.  Some items he has to buy at regular wholesale prices also.  In addition, he works a full time job.  He teaches his kids that they can always make money if need be.

Remember, in this world there are leaders that get things done and then there are followers and/or complainers that always have an excuse of why they cannot do it.  Which describes you?

So in summary for the northern states, the start of the 2013 season was slow (starting April 1, 2013).  Normally, your first 4-6 weekends out after the winter months are busy with a lot of sales and income, but not this year.  Weather played a part with cold and rain in addition to the down turn in the economy.  As we move on this year into next, plan your approach.  Figure out what you are going to sell; then buy now and stockpile it; however, buy it at a low price.  Most professional vendors do this all the time.  Do not stockpile food items though.  Your best price will be buying the entire deal; you cannot go wrong.  Sell off excess merchandise to other vendors on Ebay.  Be careful of Craigslist, though — too many scammers and it is not worth your time.