Parents-to-be get so excited that they end up buying a lot of expensive baby gear and products. The realization they might have gone overboard happens quickly enough — they see the pile of unused items in the closet or, worse, they end up in the trash.
It's not that parents make wrong purchases often. It's just that babies grow big so fast, and they outgrow baby items so quickly that those expensive baby Air Jordans you bought will only be used a few times. It's why so many moms now turn to pre-loved items sold by fellow moms online.
If you're like most parents who are convinced that buying pre-loved is more practical and budget-friendly, we've got sage advice for you, shared by other moms who have sold and bought pre loved baby items online.
#1 Be careful who you trust online “Only buy from trusted sellers,” says mommy Rochelle Velez, who is a member of a private and exclusive Facebook group where members buy, sell, and sometimes exchange baby items.
“The relationship of the moms there were established a long time ago, back when we were all still making wedding preparations. So even though we are all friends virtually only we have known each other awhile and trust has been established na talaga,” she explains.
Referrals here are important especially if you don't have an established relationship with the person who is selling you a pre-loved item.
#2 Find out the price of the pre-loved product when it is brand new You need to know how much you're saving (if any) and you’ll have a benchmark for the online sellers’ prices. This will help you know if buying this pre-loved item is really worth it or you’re better off with a brand new one.
#3 Wash and clean your pre-loved purchases Even if it’s from a trusted seller, you don't know for sure how it was stored, kept, or handled especially during delivery. And because you will be using it on the most precious human being in your life who could be sensitive to every little bug or germ, it’s best to stay safe. You might have saved money now but end up spending more on medication and hospitalization later.
#4 Check the item in person as much as possible You want to see the condition it's in especially if it’s something as expensive as a branded stroller or an imported crib. Seeing it in person will let you check for flaws like scratches and marks that you won’t often see in pictures
#5 Is it VGUC, GUC, or EUC? “Some sellers forget to indicate this, but you need to to ask is it’s in VGUC (Very Good Used Condition), GUC (Good Used Condition), or EUC (Excellent Used Condition)?” says mommy Brenda Leus. “You also need to ask for flaws, which most trusted sellers will be honest about,” she adds. You should also find out how long it was used and reasons for selling, Brenda says, as this will clue you in on the condition and the motives of the seller.
#6 Don’t hesitate to ask for more pictures or a video if really needed Certain camera angles or lighting can hide flaws like discoloration or small broken pieces. Don’t hesitate to send a message and ask for more photos. You can even ask for a video clip so you can check if it’s fully functioning in cases of expensive branded equipment. Be polite and explain the purpose of your inquiry. A trustworthy online seller who isn’t out to dupe you for your money will comfortably answer your questions and will understand the need to ask them.
#7 Check the authenticity “Be wary of people who post supposedly pre-loved branded and original items online which could turn out to be fake,” warns mommy Brenda. “There are people who post fake pre-loved items and sell it for the same price as an original pre-loved one,” she adds. It’s best to inspect all photos, and do your research. A simple online search will help you look for signs to look for to know if it’s a fake item.
#8 Make sure all parts are complete This is especially important for equipment with a motor or those that need electricity to function. A single missing piece could mean it won’t function properly or for long. You might be able to use it for a while before it starts to malfunction. Expensive equipment like breast pumps need separate items to work, so make sure the seller will give you all the necessary parts.
While shopping pre-loved is very practical and convenient, there are things you need to consider first to make sure you get your money’s worth. You have to remember that pre-loved items often don’t come with a warranty or a return policy. So spend some time to do research about the product you want to purchase, the background of your seller, and the condition of item you’re considering.