It sounds pretty easy, right? You know what you want, so just go ahead and search for it! You want a table – search ‘table’. You want a mirror – search ‘mirror’….If you want to spend hours upon hours of scrolling through crappy, unwanted, broken legged tables, sure – go for it! But if you want to find what you’re looking for quicker, without sifting through the junk, keep on reading for my hot tips on how to find hidden gems among the mass of items listed on Facebook Marketplace!
Timing is everything! When do you think most people clean out their houses and desperately want their excess goods gone? WEEKENDS! I find the best time to search the book is on a Sunday evening. New items are listed every minute, but i find that there are so many more goodies on a Sunday night. So grab a cuppa, and start scrolling!
Chose your words. We tell our kids to – it’s time we practice what we preach! If you’re looking for a mirror, you need to be more specific. Is there a particular style? Colour? Shape? For example, you could search ‘antique brass mirror’ or ’round matte black mirror’. Sometimes it helps to put yourself into the shoes of the seller too…if you were selling it, what would you call it? Giving a little extra detail will go a long way in narrowing down the piece your after.
How far are you willing to travel? On the Facebook Marketplace App, in the top right hand corner, there is a location symbol with a distance displayed next to it. You have the option to customise your search by of selecting how far away you want the items shown to be. You can select anywhere between 1-200km away. Personally, I don’t mind a bit of a road trip, and I believe that the right piece is worth travelling for, so i usually leave mine at 200km. However, if you’re after something a little more local, that works too. Just remember – the wider your search radius, the more chance you have of finding exactly what you’re looking for!
She’s a clever little fox, that Facebook Marketplace…it sorts items into categories it thinks you might be interested. For example, the categories currently listed on mine include ‘todays picks’ ‘newly listed in your area’ ‘furniture’ and ‘antiques and collectibles’ (that’s not all there is, i will spare you the details!) You can expand these categories to see what Facebook thinks you would be interested in. There is a particular category that i love the most, and that’s ‘other people also viewed’. I like it because it gives you an idea of what people with similar tastes and style as you might also be interested in. But be careful, soon you’ll be scrolling antique hat boxes that you never realised you so desperately wanted until now! (sharing this example for a friend. I’ve never been up until all hours, lost in a rabbit hole of goodness like that…..)
Look beyond what you see! Sometimes what you’re looking for is right in front of your eyes, you just can’t see it beneath the horrible print, or the hideous colour. If you’re not afraid of a little bit of DIY, you can bring so much life to old pieces. The satisfaction of finishing a project and having something that is uniquely yours is like no other! So open those eyes to all the possibilities!
People are getting rid of these pieces because they no longer want them around their house anymore. Yesterday is generally when people want them collected, so do everything you can to be there as soon as you are able. Some sellers are willing to hold pieces for the first person interested, simply out of the goodness of their heart…where as other sellers will list it as ‘first available’ which means you might lose out if you cant get there immediately. If i need a seller to hang onto something for a week or two (remember I said i don’t mind a roadtrip and will search for items in a 200mk radius?) I will always ask them if they want me to pay a deposit. I’ve actually never had to do this, most of the people that I have bought from have been legitimate legends. But you do get the odd heartless beast who sells that antique pink velvet chaise lounge from under you…
I hope these tips have helped out a little. I’d LOVE to hear from you if you feel like this has helped you find that perfect piece on Facebook Marketplace. Drop a comment below or hit me up on Instagram – i’d love to chat with you!…and remember – most of the time you are going to a strangers home – be smart, be safe and take a friend along for the ride!