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Practice English Speaking&Listening with: Meet the Couple Making Six Figures by Reselling | WSJ

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- I'm Ryan Roots.

- I'm Alli Roots.

- [Both] And together, we are Ralli Roots!

- [Narrator] Ryan and Allison Roots

are professional resellers.

Their full-time job is finding new and used items,

marking them up, and selling them online for profit.

They're also part of an active community

of YouTubers who film and post their finds

at yard sales and thrift stores.

- That is a Ralli Roots bag full of stuff.

- [Narrator] They turned this combination of reselling

and YouTubing, as well as other lines of business,

like mentoring and wholesaling, into an almost

half-a-million-dollar revenue stream last year.

- [Ryan] Can you look up garage sales on the yard sale app?

- These people have a shopping problem because,

wait a second, look at that,

there's stuff in the box, still.

- Oh, nice! - Brand new video games.

- That would be a good one to go to.

- Oh, it's start time 7:00 a.m.

- Ooh, it's already nine, we gotta go!

- Ah!

- Thanks.

- [Narrator] Ryan and Allison have

more than 96,000 followers on their YouTube channel

that documents their process of finding items

at yard sales and thrift stores.

- So, when we first went out to go to garage sales,

we took $200 with us, right?

- Yeah, about $200.

- One of the first things we bought was one of those

Sirius radios, I think we paid like $2 for it

and sold it for like 60 bucks.

- That was a really good flip, electronics are the best.

- So, we took $200 out, spent 100 bucks,

and we turned that 100 into 300,

so we had $400 from the initial 200 at the end of the day.

- It worked out pretty well.

- Yeah, so garage sales, we mostly do for fun, now.

- And we're kind of addicted to the treasure hunt.

It's a modern-day treasure hunt for adults.

- Right, let's see we got.

Those are nice Nikes. - Oh, yeah.

I have this shirt, actually.

- How much are the shoes, $2, okay, cool.

Nike shoes are cool because you can easily

look them up by-- - The model number.

- The model number on the inside.

So, we've got one listed for 20 plus 10 shipping,

so 30 bucks, and sold, no solds.

- No solds.

- We'll probably pass on those.

Look, a label-maker.

- We're looking at the battery compartment

to make sure it's not corroded,

because it has no value if it is corroded,

'cause you can't use it.

- That's probably like $20, so we will leave it.

Sometimes, people look at the job that we have

not really as a serious job,

because we're not-- - Or a career.

- Or a career. - Because it is,

it's truly our career, now.

- Yeah. - Right.

- It's not like a typical nine to five,

we don't have a schedule, we kinda make our own schedule,

which is one of the reasons why we love doing it.

But most people, when they say, okay,

you sell stuff on eBay, most people wouldn't really

consider that a traditional job (laughs), yeah.

- What's the price? - It's a T3.

How much you asking for the Gators jacket?

- [Man] Ah, make me an offer.

- [Ryan] 10 bucks?

- Ah, I can do $10 on that jacket for ya.

- [Ryan] Cool, thank you.

- [Man] Yes, sir, thank you, sir.

- [Ryan] Thank you so much.

- [Man] Yep.

- All right, guys, so at that garage sale,

we picked up, well, I guess three things

'cause you bought something for yourself, yeah?

- Yes.

- I picked up this jacket, it's a Florida Gators jacket.

Not a huge money-maker, probably, I would say,

30 to $40 on this jacket, I paid $10 for it,

so, not a terrible buy.

- And then we grabbed this Netgear wireless router.

We paid $5 for it.

- $6, it's like, stuff like this, bread and butter,

meat-and-potatoes-type items for us, so, they sell.

$35, six bucks into $35, we'll take that.

- Milk and cookies!

- (clicks tongue) Sweet!


The YouTube thing, a lot of resellers are putting out

those motivational videos, because they've been

in that position before, where they've become unmotivated

and they know that people need that advice.

Most of the people we're trying to help

are not gonna be turning this into a six-figure business.

Most of these people are just looking to make

an extra 300 bucks a month to pay for their car payment,

or put $500 a month into savings so they can go on vacation.

And those really, genuinely, are the people

that we're trying to help get to that point.

- [Narrator] While reselling remains a core part

of their business, the Roots are beginning to shift

their emphasis to teaching and wholesale.

They run online mentoring classes six times a year

for aspiring resellers, and started selling their students

wholesale goods this year.

- So, the most profitable part of our business

was eBay and wholesale, and now it's transitioned

more into mostly wholesale, and also teaching.

- [Narrator] But eBay remains a core part of the Roots'

reselling business, with their main account,

the hip lion, bringing in nearly $140,000 in sales

in the past 12 months.

- So, because we sell a lot of clothing and shoes,

that's what we specialize in, and in particular,

we sell a lot of used clothing as well.

So, something like a vintage t-shirt

would go really well on eBay,

or really well on a place like Poshmark.

There's so many different

ways to sell. - It's crazy.

- We specialize in eBay, but there's so many avenues.

I mean, eBay, Amazon, Poshmark, Mercari, Depop, StockX,

I mean-- - Etsy.

- There's even local places like LetGo, OfferUp,

Facebook Marketplace, so many ways to sell.

- So many ways to sell.

- [Narrator] The Roots' business has expanded so much

that they had to move operations from their garage

to a rented warehouse in Tampa last year.

Ryan says this helped propel their reselling

from a hobby to a business.

The Roots work around four days a week

from their warehouse in Tampa, and have two employees

who help photograph and ship thousands of items

they have stored in the warehouse

to eBay customers and fellow resellers.

- Ooh, that's heavy!

We need to ship out 45 pairs of Toms to one of our students.

So, next would be the eBay section,

or the eBay inventory, right?

We know when an item sells on eBay,

it's labeled with this number, so it's very easy

for Callie to go, okay, item number 231 has sold.

(machine clicks)

So, one of my favorite items listed right now,

which is a really good, high-value item, it's this

awesome, awesome vintage Florida Miami University jacket.

We would expect about $120

for this jacket. - Yeah, for this jacket.

- I think that's about what it'll sell for.

And this is cool, because we paid a dollar for it.

- That's crazy. - Which is pretty sweet.

I think the biggest misconceptions about resellers

in general are, like, we're flipping people's trash,

picking through a bin, and picking out a shirt

and then not washing it, and selling bedbugs to people.

- Oh, you're selling old junk,

I guess? - Yeah, people don't think

you can make an actual living doing what we do.

But again, done right, you can absolutely do it,

and we're proof of that, y'know?

I mean, we've had comments on YouTube

from people saying, stupid Millennials, get a real job.

And I'm like, well, look at my bank account. (laughs)

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