Life on Tapp: It's a never ending cycle of selling, buying and selling again
Blaise Tapp writes: It never ceases to amaze me how much stuff the average person accumulates – a recent visit to the car booter’s paradise that is our garden shed left me yearning for a stiff drink, such was the scale of the chaos before me.
Alongside the bikes, the roof box and lawnmower, sit 20 odd years worth of stuff that we’d forgotten we had.
I suspect that somewhere in there is at least three artificial Christmas trees, a tagine set and about 75 cookbooks, most of which have never been used.
The other day I found an unopened cocktail set that some thoughtful soul gave us on our wedding day… 18 years ago.
Then there’s the three taped up boxes that the removal men packed for us before we moved 250 miles from one end of the country a decade ago.
I’m half tempted to put them in the back of the family motor and drive them to the local tip without looking inside.
I mean, logic should dictate that if I have not needed whatever is inside those boxes since 2013 then I can almost certainly live without it now.
However, to do that would be to throw away a potential windfall not to be sniffed at because there is a market for absolutely everything these days.
In the past, unwanted stuff such as jigsaw sets of Buckingham Palace and pop up play tents either went in landfill or on the doorstep of whichever charity shop was closest.
Years ago, one of the few ways to make money out of unwanted stuff was to take out a classified ad or book a pitch at the local car boot sale but both required too much effort for the likes of me.
These days, it’s never been easier to make money out of what lurks at the bottom of cupboards thanks to the myriad selling sites and social networks that now dominate our lives.
Mrs Tapp is a dab hand at selling stuff that’s either gathering dust or that the kids have grown out of, although, unfortunately, that money is immediately spent on somebody else’s unwanted stuff.
It's a never ending cycle of selling, buying and selling again. Sometimes it's wellies – we tend to get a new, second hand pair every couple of months, such is the rate that the youngest Tapp grows.
Then there are the kitchen chairs – at one point we had at least eight kitchen chairs in that shed that resembles Arthur Daley’s lock up – as you never know when the lads from the first fifteen are coming round for dinner.
We currently have two kitchen tables because we were unsure whether the one we had would be big enough for the upcoming festivities – I anticipate that there will be a new listing on our local selling page in the coming weeks.
But money doesn’t always have to change hands on the internet as we’ve also dabbled in a bit of freecycling recently, which is actually quite rewarding when we find a good home for stuff that no longer serves us any purpose. I
t’s not so rewarding when our already huge pile of stuff we can’t possibly use expands when the free goods come back the other way.
One thing I’ve noticed is that some folk will give away absolutely anything including open bottles of booze and, my personal favourite, a couple of carrots.
Times are hard for many people out there meaning that the second hand market has never been so vital to so many – just so long as there’s more stuff going out of ours than coming in.