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How to Make Money on Craigslist

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Knowing how to make money on Craigslist can be incredibly useful, specially in these hard economic times when many people are struggling to find and keep their jobs.

While there are many ways to make money with Craigslist and indeed online, most people are looking for free ways to make money working from home. Maybe they don’t have any money to invest, or maybe they have the money but don’t want to risk it. Whatever the case may be, there is a simple way you can profit from Craigslist without spending a dime.

One of the best ways to earn cash online is through classified sites, such as Craigslist. But most people simply over look it, and most are afraid of it because of all the make money Craigslist scam stuff.

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Since Craig Alexander Newmark launched Craigslist in 1995, CL has come a long way. It serves over twenty billion page views per month! Craigslist is one of the most popular websites in the world, and millions of people visit it each month. And that makes it easy to earn money on Craigslist.

If you already know how to make money on eBay, you may have a little easier time making money on Craigslist, as it has some similarities. There are no “how to make money with Craigslist secrets” here.

To get some of that Craigslist money for free, you have to look into “For Sale” category. In the “For Sale” category of Craigslist, there is a section called “Free Stuff”. In this section, people give away stuff they don’t want, for free. You simply have to go pick them up. Some times people even include pictures of these items.

The free section of Craigslist is a gold mine, if you know how to mine it! If you don’t, no worries, as I am about to teach you how to make money using Craigslist.

How To Make Money On CraigsList

1- Register For Free
Go to and register for a free account, if you already don’t have one. You can register for free, and it only takes a few seconds.

2- Find Free Items
Search your local Craigslist, and look for free items that are in good shape (which most of them are). Sometimes you have to contact the owner to let them know you are going to pick it up, but in most cases, they will put the item in front of their drive way, which you just have to stop by to pick it up. A pickup truck would be very handy here, as it will allow you to pick up bigger items. But you can get by even without a truck.

3- Clean Up
This step is the “hardest” part of making money with Craigslist. If possible, spend a few minutes to clean it up, or whatever it needs to make it look better. For example, if it’s a desk, put a fresh coat of paint on it. Just make the item look as nice as you can.

4- Take Pictures
When people look for stuff to buy on Craigslist or anywhere else for that matter, they tend to click on ads with pictures. People want to see what it looks like. So, spend a few minutes taking a few pictures of the item from different angles.

5- List Your Item
Now you need to list your item on Craigslist. Login, and list your item in the “For Sale” category, under the appropriate section. This is very important, make sure you find and list your item under the right section. For example; if the item is a chair, list it under “Furniture”.

If the item has some history to it, or there is anything interesting about it, use that to add a nice description for the item, even if it’s just a few words. In your ad, make sure you put your phone number or email address, so people can get in touch with you quickly.

6- Repeat The Process
Now that you have listed your first item, go back and keep looking for other free stuff. Do this over and over again. After a while, you will know what items sell easier and faster, and what kinds of items don’t. As you do this over and over, you will gain some experience, and the process becomes much faster and easier.


This is all it takes for making money on Craigslist, free. In a few hours or so, you will start to get calls and emails from people who want to buy the item. It is unbelievable how easy it is to make money with this method.

You may not believe it, but there are people who make a living, picking up free stuff from Craigslist, and selling them back on Craigslist for a profit. It doesn’t take any skills, you don’t need any money, you don’t need a website, nothing. You don’t need anything but a free Craigslist account and an Internet connection. It’s as simple as that!

If you want to make money without spending a dime, and you don’t have any skills to offer, this is the way to do it. Finding free stuff, and selling them back on Craigslist is how you can make money on Craigslist.

28 Comments So Far...

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  1. Alex Papa says:

    Great topic! Craiglist list a great tool to use. Unfortunately, it is still underutilized as most people still don’t know it as well as they know eBay. It is amazing how easy it is to buy and sell things on Craiglist!

    • satrap says:

      Thanks for stopping by Alex. Yes, craigslist is truly an over looked source that can be great for making money.

  2. rani says:

    U are great i got some important money related ideas

    • satrap says:

      Thank you, I am glad the article was helpful.

  3. steven papas says:

    I was unaware of CL. I just visited the website, but as expected, it doesn’t work in Athens. Thanks though for the info.

    • Satrap says:

      @steven papas,
      Sorry to hear that Steven. CL operates in a lot of countries and cities, but unfortunately not in every country and city.

  4. Em says:

    unfortunately, I find that free stuff gets replies in minutes, but items that are even as low as a dollar take forever.

    • Satrap says:

      Thats true in some cases. However,with a little trial and error you can find ways to speed up the reply.

      For example, by writing attractive titles for your listings, you can entice people to click on your listing, then with a powerful description of the items and why and how it can benefit them, you can bring them to buy the item.

  5. Mea says:

    craiglist is the best way to make money online i love it i have a cleaning bussines and is the best i love it

    • Satrap says:

      Yes, craigslist is great for businesses like yours as it provides an easy way to gather clients.

  6. David Lockwood says:

    I make a full time income off of craigslist, and in my experience the free items have a ton of traffic and most times if its left and your the lucky one to get it its not in very good shape, (not cost effective to repair and resell.) My email is For a fee I can show you the majority of ins an outs off making a full time income off of Craigslist, I am in the process of doing a video course. I have done this in three Florida markets an in Charlotte NC. Its great money, you can make it quick and very consistently.

    • Al says:

      @David Lockwood,

      Right.. nobody in their right mind would be dumb enough to pay you for tips when they can search for free.

      • Satrap says:

        Thats not true!
        This is not to defend David, as I clearly stated everything you need to make money with this method, in this post for free, lol.

        There are people online that pay for simplest things to be done for them, simply because they dont want to spend the time to do it themselves.

    • Satrap says:

      @David Lockwood,
      Thanks for sharing your experience David. However, I would advice against leaving your email address in places where you comment as spammers can easily scrape your email using softwares and bombard you with scams.

  7. Seth Archeson says:

    There’s a flip side to that coin. I never put stuff up on CL in the “free stuff” section anymore. I’ll put it up for a dollar or five dollars or something low… to weed out the types of people that scrape the “free stuff” forums. Flaky, strange people that JUMP on things – I mean they reply within 5 minutes of me posting – and then take forever to pick it up. Hell, half the time they don’t even pick the stuff up. :-P

    • Satrap says:

      @Seth Archeson,
      I never experienced that. That certainly is wired that people call and schedule a pick up, but never actually pick it up.

  8. Mike Moyer says:

    This is great advice. Don’t forget to mention though that once you start making money, there is more profit in high dollar items like appliances and electronics. But there is also more risk.

  9. brittany says:

    Just make sure you’re quick…cuz chances are if you live in a big city that there are about a hundred or more people watching the craigslist free listings at all times, trying to do the exact same thing as you. It really comes down to who can get there the fastest.

    • Nick says:

      @brittany, Check out It’s a paid service, but the price is cheaper than anything comparable. All you have to do is set up a Watchlist, and it’ll send you a text message on your phone whenever there’s a new listing. It’s way faster than RSS or email notifications, and you don’t have to sit in front of your computer all day checking email and other sites.

  10. Ariel says:

    I find the drawback to this method is picking stuff up. Some of these listing are close by but some are as far away as the valley, I would suspect you spend more money on gas than on selling the stuff :-( not for me, gas is waaaay too expensive nowadays

    • satrap says:

      Well, that is something to consider as well, Ariel. Of course, you can always deal with people close by, plus with some items, it may be worth it to spend a few dollars on gas if you know you can make a decent amount of money selling that item.

      Thanks for sharing your thoughts Ariel.

  11. mar says:

    Is it really true that CL is free to use/advertise/sell/buy items and services? If it’s free, then how CL make money?

  12. Michael says:

    Thank you for sharing your experience and what you know. Another way Craigslist could be beneficial is Find me at mplisting

  13. RCONNORIII says:

    Just moved into a new house and need to get rid of a few things-thanks for the advice with craigslist Satrap

    • Satrap says:

      You are very welcome. Congrats on your new home by the way.

  14. Jenny Fedei says:

    Where is my order?!! I paid you money for your E-book but have not received anything!!!

    • Satrap says:

      Hi jenny,

      I am really sorry about the problem. Somehow there was a glitch in the system and the page where you would have been able to download the ebook was broken. I have emailed you a message along with the eBook attached.

      Thank you for your purchase and I am very sorry for the trouble.