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Get it sold your way with Plattsburgh's pBay

PLATTSBURGH When selling items on eBay, the task may seem daunting. How do you post your items on-line? How do you receive payment? What method of shipping should you choose? That's where Plattsburgh's pBay, a community eBay drop-off store, comes in. Business owner Richard Leswing offers his more than 10 years experience in the on-line auction industry to those wishing to take their old books, furniture, records and collectibles that are just gathering dust and turn them in to cold, hard cash. Leswing has been offering friendly, personalized customer service through Plattsburgh's pBay since he purchased the year-old business in January. My experience on eBay puts me in a pretty good position to be running a trustworthy, reliable, honest business, said Leswing, who has also been informally dealing antiques for several years. The way it works is simple. Those wanting to sell their items on eBay can stop into the Plattsburgh's pBay shop for an initial consultation or receive one over the phone. A call, said Leswing, can save a potential seller a trip, as the value of many items may be determined by a simple description. Once in the shop, Leswing is able to give an estimated value of what the item can fetch on eBay. The value of many items such as antique lighting of which Leswing has an extensive background of technical knowledge is easier to estimate, while others require research. Leswing will sit down with a potential seller to show him or her what is the average selling price based off what like items are going for, he said. Items that are put out to auction through Plattsburgh's pBay are then recorded in inventory, photographed and listed on eBay with full descriptions. From there, all the seller has to do is wait. If the item sells, Leswing handles the auction's closing and the boxing and shipping of the item. A check is cut for the seller, less a nominal commission. Items that don't sell are able to be reposted or returned to the owner, with a small drop-off fee charged. I usually charge $3 for one item or $5 for a whole box of things, explained Leswing. That basically covers the cost of our time to process and inventory the item and those cost to list it on eBay. There are very few things that can't be sold on eBay, said Leswing. While items like firearms, ammunition and government documents are among items prohibited, there are many more that can be sold, including antiques, collectibles, electronics, sports memorabilia and even motor vehicles. One particular item Leswing found to be an interesting sale was a 2003 Harley Davidson Screamin Eagle Road King motorcycle. That item, owned by a gentleman in Malone, ended up going to the other side of the world. A fellow from Russia called me as a result of seeing the motorcycle on eBay, said Leswing. We ended up making a deal after the auction had ended with no bids. That's a case where you can still make a sale but not directly on eBay. Another of the most memorable items he has sold was a promotional poster for books from the old Nancy Drew book series, which dates back to the 1930s. While the books themselves don't bring in as much on the on-line auction site, the posters do, as they are much more rare. That was one of the first things I sold here, said Leswing. It had been for sale in a local shop for $4 and the owner took it off his shelf and brought it in here and asked if I could give it a try on eBay. It ended up selling for $1,300. Other items which tend to be highly sought after, said Leswing, are sealed, leather-bound books, collector pins from the Olympics and Disney, car parts, motorcycles parts, and, of course, antiques. However, for every seller, there's usually a buyer, no matter what the item. We get pretty much everything items from people who are downsizing, cleaning out the garage, cleaning the attic, said Leswing. And, whether a seller is a novice to on-line selling or an eBay expert, Leswing said his business is ready, willing and able to offer the excellent service for which it is known. I get a lot of people who come in that know how to sell on eBay but they're pressed for time, they don't want to do the work, they don't want to deal with the shipping. From start to finish there's a lot of work involved, explained Leswing. That's why we're here. Plattsburgh's pBay will host an open house next Saturday, Aug. 23, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. The sale will consist of multiple vendors with various items for purchase. Plattsburgh's pBay, located at 21 Weed St., is open Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. and Saturday, by chance or appointment. The store may be reached at 563-7229 or via e-mail at rich@plattsburghpbay.com. For more information, visit www.plattsburghpbay.com.

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