MANUEL

I did it. Everyone told me not too, but I didn't listen. I quit my job to work from home on eBay. Eventually it worked out OK, but the road to OK was a long and bumpy one. Here is what happened.

I worked at a high pressure job in IT (Information Technology) and I hated it. The hours were long; I was on salary so there was no overtime. My kids thought I lived somewhere else and the stress was incredible. I looked for other career options and quickly realized that changing jobs would lead me to the same fate, just in a different location. After talking with my spouse, we decided that I should change jobs. I don't think he realized that I meant quitting my $50,000 a year job to sell items on eBay. I neglected to mention that. After we spoke, the following morning I gave two weeks notice. Let the games begin!

The very evening I gave notice, I started looking into what it took to sell items on eBay. Surely it could not be that difficult, everyone seems to do it and I have IT experience. I have an eBay ID. So I did what most people do to start out; I cleaned out my closet. The clothes did OK; especially some of the designer clothes I would no longer need because I was going to be working in my PJ's at night! Looking back I realized I was delusional. When my husband finally realized what I was planning, he flipped. Short of threatening divorce, he said that he was under the impression I would be changing jobs or careers. He never dreamed I would be quitting to stay at home and play on eBay. He gave me a year to get it together or back into the corporate jungle I would go.

My final two weeks of employment came to an end and I still am waiting on payment for one auction. The others shipped out, and I am not sure what else to sell. I started looking around at what I thought would sell. I know, I'll buy iPods from the liquidator's websites that are always advertising they have eBay items. Well, the iPods turned into a pallet of electronics that set me back $1,500.00. I love my husband; he hasn't tried to kill me yet. My loving spouse assumed that I would have discussed a pallet purchase with him before I bought it. Oh well...

About that pallet - it arrived and I was so excited. It was like Christmas. I unwrapped the pallet holding it all together; I couldn't wait to see the iPods. Oh boy was I disappointed. I thought this was new merchandise, not used opened stuff. 2 of the 5 iPods would not power up. None of the boxes were sealed and there were several other electronic items that did not work. Wait, it gets better. These were an older version of iPod, not the new ones that are consumed in bidding wars on eBay. These are the iPods that only sell once in 4 auctions. Some of the other electronics I was able to get to work. After spending a week going through the pallet of stuff, repairing items and repackaging and taping boxes I was finally ready to take some pictures and list the items that I could. Out of the 100 items in the pallet, 75 were salable. Of those 75, 25 sold the first time but for a lot less than I had hoped, 15 sold the second time around, and the other 35 never sold. The end result was an $800 loss! Not a good start.

What did I learn? First thing is that I really needed to learn what all of those terms mean on the liquidator's website. If I had known what a pallet of returns really meant I would have passed on this. The second thing I learned is that I had a lot to learn. So I spent the next month reading and researching and understanding it all. Then I finally started to get it right.

I quit my job to work from home on eBay. It was a good decision after all. However, I could have avoided a lot of problems early on if I had done some research. A return to the corporate jungle never occurred. I had a successful business.