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Lost Luggage Auctions guide discussion

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Lost Luggage Auctions guide discussion

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MSE_JennyMSE_Jenny MSE Staff
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MSE Staff
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Hi all,

We've written a Lost Luggage Auctions guide and would love your feedback.

How did you find the info? Was it useful? Do you have any other tips you'd add?

Thanks for your help,

MSE Jenny
«1

Replies

  • soolinsoolin Forumite, Board Guide
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    Greasby's auction house website is here : http://www.greasbys.co.uk/

    Greasby's is one of the houses that does not allow you to look in or handle the cases beforehand so you need to trust your instincts - remember also that you need to clear all your purchases on the day of the sale.

    Before getting too excited try and track down a copy of the BBC TV series Del Boys and Dealers as that shows several people using Greasby's to various degrees of success.
    I'm the Board Guide for the Ebay Board , Charities Board , Dosh & Disability , Up Your Income and the Local MoneySaving-England board which means I volunteer to help get your forum questions answered and keep the forum running smoothly. However, do remember, board guides don't read every post. If you spot an illegal or inappropriate post then please report it to [email protected] (it's not part of my role to deal with this). Any views are mine and not the official line of MoneySavingExpert.com
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  • mrcol1000mrcol1000 Forumite
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    I think encouraging the general public to enter the world of lost luggage auctions is a dangerous road. Although the article states that expensive items are removed, you are still going to get people thinking there will be an expensive camera in the suitcase like there is on TV. You also do not know if those designer clothes you find are real. Most places tourists go have street sellers selling fake items.

    There is money to be made but you really need to know what you are doing, have the self control to strictly keep to your limits and know the market to be able to pick out the items that you can make the money out of. Most people will steam in thinking they will make a fortune, to end up with a bag of clothes brought in Sports Direct. I really think the article needs to have more warnings and horror stories of when it all went wrong.
  • soolinsoolin Forumite, Board Guide
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    Further to what mrcol1000 says I would also remind potential buyers that shows like Baggage Wars are partly set up, the lots are 'seeded' by the producers to make the programme more interesting. As per my earlier point I would seriously suggest watching 'Del boys and Dealers', the people making anything at all from suitcases were some very dedicated ladies who bought loads, washed and cleaned them all and sold them from a pop up shop in their house. Personally it would take more than a few pounds profit to persuade me to rummage through someone's manky clothing, I have a real 'thing' about dirty clothes and couldn't possibly go through a dirty case.
    I'm the Board Guide for the Ebay Board , Charities Board , Dosh & Disability , Up Your Income and the Local MoneySaving-England board which means I volunteer to help get your forum questions answered and keep the forum running smoothly. However, do remember, board guides don't read every post. If you spot an illegal or inappropriate post then please report it to [email protected] (it's not part of my role to deal with this). Any views are mine and not the official line of MoneySavingExpert.com
    New to Forum? Guide
  • ciderboy2009ciderboy2009 Forumite
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    My wife & I used to buy lost luggage and sell it on before these tv shows made it too popular.

    We used to be able to get 10 bin liner sized bags of clothes for around £50 including premium etc.

    From that about half would be unusable (a lot was in a disgusting state), half a dozen items would be eBayable and the rest would go to boot sales.

    When you added together the time taken going to the auctions, sorting through everything, getting rid of the dross & washing what was left, listing on eBay and then getting up at 5:00am every Sunday to go to the boot sale it didn't work out as much profit per hour.

    We gave up when the cost went over £100 for 10 bags.
  • shaun_from_Africashaun_from_Africa Forumite
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    I too used to buy a fair amount from an auction house that dealt with airport lost property and police stolen/recovered goods.
    There is no way that any lost baggage would ever be released for auction unless it had been thoroughly checked first as it may contain illegal goods or items that need duty paying on them.
  • soolinsoolin Forumite, Board Guide
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    I too used to buy a fair amount from an auction house that dealt with airport lost property and police stolen/recovered goods.
    There is no way that any lost baggage would ever be released for auction unless it had been thoroughly checked first as it may contain illegal goods or items that need duty paying on them.

    This really reinforces the points made both in the article and the comments above- there is no UK auction house that doesn't open and sort first. As the article says at the very least they have to look for ID to try and return the suitcase to the rightful owner, let alone check for anything dodgy. The MSE article clearly states that anything of value, plus all toiletry items are removed before the cases are auctioned. I suspect though that people will just see the pound signs and not read the article properly.

    Whilst I am not sure about the US position, I suspect it is the same as the UK especially as they are such a litigious society. The US style programmes are clear about them being for entertainment purposes- and do not deny the lots are sometimes seeded to make them more interesting. The reality is that it would be a very boring programme if week after week we had to watch baggage 'hunters' sort through manky clothes.
    I'm the Board Guide for the Ebay Board , Charities Board , Dosh & Disability , Up Your Income and the Local MoneySaving-England board which means I volunteer to help get your forum questions answered and keep the forum running smoothly. However, do remember, board guides don't read every post. If you spot an illegal or inappropriate post then please report it to [email protected] (it's not part of my role to deal with this). Any views are mine and not the official line of MoneySavingExpert.com
    New to Forum? Guide
  • shaun_from_Africashaun_from_Africa Forumite
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    soolin wrote: »
    Whilst I am not sure about the US position, I suspect it is the same as the UK especially as they are such a litigious society.
    The US is probably even stricter than the UK.
    Seeing that on domestic flights in the US, provided that they are in a locked case then it's perfectly legal to have firearms and ammunition in checked baggage.
    For this reason alone, I don't think that there would be the slightest chance that all items sent for auction wouldn't be thoroughly inspected prior to being released.

    Could you imagine the outcry if someone bought a locked bag for a few dollars and found a 44 Magnum and 1/2 KG of cocaine inside. (I bet that one wouldn't appear on an episode of Baggage battles).
  • k3lvck3lvc Forumite
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    I used to frequent Greasbys for entertainment value once a month or so when we lived in that neck of the woods (c.10yrs ago) - watched the BBC show on it and couldn't believe a) how many of the 'regulars' were still sitting in the same seats looking to make a killing and b) how much the bag prices had gone up (little used to go for over £10 yet many now seemed to be £30+


    At £10 it was a bit of fun and often came out with a profit even after a nice lunch out somewhere but wouldn't even consider it now
  • StaffsSWStaffsSW Forumite
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    This is just another MSE "traffic magnet" rather than anything groundbreaking or revolutionary.

    In other news, grass is often green, and bears do something rather nasty in woods.
    <--- Nothing to see here - move along --->
  • RFWRFW Forumite
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    The US is probably even stricter than the UK.
    Seeing that on domestic flights in the US, provided that they are in a locked case then it's perfectly legal to have firearms and ammunition in checked baggage.
    For this reason alone, I don't think that there would be the slightest chance that all items sent for auction wouldn't be thoroughly inspected prior to being released.

    Could you imagine the outcry if someone bought a locked bag for a few dollars and found a 44 Magnum and 1/2 KG of cocaine inside. (I bet that one wouldn't appear on an episode of Baggage battles).
    In the US, the customers have to sign that they will relinquish any illegal goods with heavy penalties if they don't.

    As far as lost luggage goes here I've never really understood it as being any way a good idea and I've been around auctions for 40 years both as a buyer and auctioneer.

    There have been many cases of people getting unexpected items with things they have bought in auction, it depends what it is as to how it should be treated. So whilst I wouldn't recommend anyone bothering with lost property auctions there's an outside chance of something being missed, it's lottery odds though and frankly it's less hazardous to health doing the lottery than going through someone's smalls.

    If you are interested in how some of the TV shows are set up, look up Dave Hester/Storage Wars, he had an ongoing dispute with the show where he left and later came back.
    .
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