The Bigger Better Game!

You know that show where those two guys trade up stuff they get for bigger and better items? And try and outdo each other and come away with something ridiculously huge at the end? (I think it’s called Barter Kings?) Well, I came across an item last weekend yard sale’ing that prompted me to give the game a shot myself :)

Let me set the scene for you: My mother, sister and I are roll up to a new yard sale together and we see something glittering at the front of the driveway. It seems like something that should have been around circa 1940, but here it is staring us in the face as beautiful as the day it was first made. My sister and I yell out at the exact same time – “That’s mine!” – but considering she’s 8 months pregnant AND my little sister, I of course let her have first dibs being the gentlemanly guy I am ;)

This is what we saw:

pimp antique baby stroller

The Cadillac of all baby strollers, baby! Haha… And all three of us circled around it like hawks, making sure no other patrons could get close ;) We then wondered how many dollar bills it would cost us to snatch it right up. $50? $100? I’ve seen similar rides go well into the hundreds before, so I had no idea how bad this woman wanted to get rid of it or not.

Well, the answer to that was $15 :) And after a few more seconds of exciting bargaining as per the rules of yard saleing, we walked away with it for three dollars even cheaper. (And by “walked away” I mean “went back home to get a different car that could fit this thing inside of it,” haha… it’s pretty big). My sister eventually decided it would take up way too much space in her house too, and advised I should have some fun with it instead. Which I quickly accepted without hesitation ;)

Now to some people this might look like a clunky piece of crap that should have been left in whatever decade it came from, but to me it has hustler potential all over it. Like I said I’ve seen strollers like these go for hundreds in certain stores, and those weren’t nearly as in good of shape as this one. So I’m sure at the *very* least I could pull off a $75 or $100 profit if I turned around and sold it right away. My mom works part-time at an antique store and I bet if we place it right out front we could create some buzz for them :) After I take it for a few test spins with Baby Money, of course. Ain’t no daddy on the block’s got one of these bad boys, I can guarantee that!

So now $12.00 in the hole, and we try to upgrade/sell it to something better and see how far we can take it. It would be cool to have some sort of grand goal in the end too like they do on that show or in that book, One Red Paperclip – remember that guy? The kid who started with a single paperclip and traded his way all the way up to a house??

My imagination is currently lacking right now as to what we could shoot for in the end, but maybe you guys have some ideas? What’s something awesome you’d like to get your hands on that’s somewhat do-able? Or even not do-able? ;) Or maybe we just go with the flow and see where it takes us?

Either way it sounds like a lot of fun. And if anyone wants to join me, it’s a good weekend to start! If you live close by I’ll even give you my $2 boombox I also snagged up last weekend, haha… It’ll make for another awesome starting point :)

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  1. Free Money Minute June 21, 2013 at 6:09 AM

    Nice ride for baby money, matches the daddy’s former Caddy.

    1. J. Money June 21, 2013 at 9:46 AM

      Who said it’s my *former* Caddy? ;)

  2. Aimee June 21, 2013 at 6:40 AM

    Did you get a new car yet? If not, trade up to a car!

    1. J. Money June 21, 2013 at 9:47 AM

      Hah! That’s a great idea actually, regardless if I got a new car or not! Maybe I’ll try and upgrade to a more pimper Caddy?

  3. Edward Antrobus June 21, 2013 at 8:34 AM

    There is a blog called Blue Collar Workman whose owner has a side hustle doing exactly that kind of thing. He goes around thrift stores looking for things that are underpriced, buys them, maybe cleans them up a bit, and then sells them on ebay or places that buy precious metals.

    1. J. Money June 21, 2013 at 9:47 AM

      Nice! Does he keep getting bigger and better things? Or just does it as a hustle for side money? Wonder if he’s trying to work up to something specific or just for fun.

      1. Edward Antrobus June 22, 2013 at 12:33 AM

        He just does it as a side hustle to supplement his income.

  4. Stacy June 21, 2013 at 9:24 AM

    Love that thing! I’ll bet you can get at least $100 from it. I say try to sell it then use the money to buy something else to sell and track how much you make from the original $12.

    1. J. Money June 21, 2013 at 9:48 AM

      Yeah, I think that’s what I’m gonna do. I can either sell the stuff I get or trade up, but I have to use the same money and keep track (and pictures) of it all so it’s a nice flow until we reach the end. Whatever that may be.

  5. Troy Bombardia June 21, 2013 at 9:39 AM

    Isn’t that the same story as One Red Paperclip, where the guy ultimately ends up with a house?

    1. J. Money June 21, 2013 at 9:49 AM

      Yes. That’s why I wrote in the post, “One Red Paperclip – remember that guy? The kid who started with a single paperclip and traded his way all the way up to a house??”

      haha…. I caught you skimming! ;)

  6. David Hunter June 21, 2013 at 9:46 AM

    I bet all the little baby girls are all over Baby Money now! Rock on!

    1. J. Money June 21, 2013 at 9:49 AM

      Now? ;)

  7. John S @ Frugal Rules June 21, 2013 at 9:55 AM

    Oh, you could easily get $100 out of that stroller. There has to be someone out there that is willing to pony up at least that much for it.

  8. Brian June 21, 2013 at 10:05 AM

    I say trade up to a pontoon boat then throw a party….

    1. J. Money June 21, 2013 at 3:18 PM


  9. Reese June 21, 2013 at 10:22 AM

    I lived in Paris as a child, and when my mother was expecting my brother, her friends gave her a top of the line baby carriage that had to have cost about the same as a small French car. It was impeccably made and absolutely gorgeous. She probably could have sold it for a mint, but instead gave it to another friend when my brother outgrew it. Not to knock the carriage found in the yard sale, but there is absolutely no comparison between the one my brother rode in and that one.

    1. J. Money June 21, 2013 at 3:22 PM

      Picture or I don’t believe you :)

  10. Kyle @ Debt Free Diaries June 21, 2013 at 11:39 AM

    Cool stroller! I love old-school stuff like that. Have you thought of trying to trade yourself up to a vacation? You could pick some crazy destination like the Bahamas or something to make it interesting. Ultimately it would be a $12 trip, and you can’t really beat that price :)

    1. J. Money June 21, 2013 at 3:23 PM

      No, I haven’t thought of a trip like that but I like it! I tend to get stuck in the “things” mentality but yeah pulling off a vacay would be pretty smooth :)

  11. Alexis June 21, 2013 at 12:22 PM

    I think you should wait to trade up until Baby Money gets a little bigger and/or you decide you’re done with baby-making. There is nothing like those amazing old strollers for getting a fussy baby to sleep! (It’s all in the springs.) And if you keep it in good condition, it’ll be more just as much a few years from now.

    1. J. Money June 21, 2013 at 3:24 PM

      Believe me, it’s crossed my mind but it’s way unsafe w/out any straps at my child’s age (11 mos when he’s trying to stand and crawl out of everything!). Though it would be fine for wee little babes :)

  12. Mike@WeOnlyDoThisOnce June 21, 2013 at 12:22 PM

    Looks sweet! Great idea, and let us know how it goes!

  13. Jacob @ iHeartBudgets June 21, 2013 at 2:01 PM

    A pram stroller! Looks like it’s straight out of England! My wife wanted one of these for a while, but then we realized they don’t fold up, lol. I bet you get AT LEAST $100 for that thing. And like other’s have said, make your way up to a car, you totally could.

    We’ve done something similar called “redecorate for $0”, where we sell crap and upgrade our house without spending ANYTHING out of pocket. I love spending NOTHING and getting a bunch in return. Maybe I’ll try playing this game at garage sales this summer and see where I get….

    1. J. Money June 21, 2013 at 3:25 PM

      Yeah! Do it! Let’s see how far we can go :) And funny you mention “Pram.” I kept seeing that term come up when doing my searches online but no idea what that means exactly. Guess I should have just done a quick search for that too, haha…

        1. Jacob @ iHeartBudgets June 22, 2013 at 1:58 PM

          Dude! Get your money’s worth outta this thing! Could be the start of something huge…I bet you could make it up to a car by the end of summer…

          1. J. Money June 26, 2013 at 12:36 PM

            I’m certainly going to try :)

  14. Angella June 21, 2013 at 2:04 PM

    What a bargain! I have that exact same stroller, except in maroon, and it comes with the child seat. It was mine as a baby, my parents gave it to me. Needs a lot of work and the prices for the parts to repair it are insanely expensive! This is going to be fun to read as you work your way up. Maybe a house? Yacht? Haha, best of luck!

    1. J. Money June 21, 2013 at 3:29 PM

      HAH! Really?? I guess they aren’t as rare as I first thought. But does make me feel better that all the parts are expensive ;) That should mean mine in its condition should be a pretty penny!

      Also, I want a pic of yours if you can snap one later on. Wanna see what it looks like!

  15. Jake @ Common Cents Wealth June 21, 2013 at 4:01 PM

    That thing is awesome. I don’t think I’d ever actually use it, but it looks sweet. I don’t think I’m cool enough to push it.

    1. J. Money June 26, 2013 at 12:36 PM

      Haha…. come over and find out :)

  16. Christine @ ThePursuitofGreen June 21, 2013 at 11:51 PM

    Whoa! That’s straight out of Mary Poppins! I didn’t even realize these baby carriages actually existed. Always thought they were fanciful illustrations. Aim higher and go for more! I bet most people have never ever seen it before and would be willing to pay more than a hundred to snag that. Or…could you display it…then hold a silent auction to go to the highest bidder? Only if it gets a lot of interest of course.

    1. J. Money June 26, 2013 at 12:37 PM

      Yeah, possibly? I know there’s an auction house near where I am right now actually – I should show them a pic and see what happens :)

      I also wondered if I could turn it into some sort of cool coffee table and THEN pawn it off? So it’s actually more functional in the real world, ya know? Would get more use out of than just sitting somewhere collecting dust probably.

  17. Lori June 22, 2013 at 1:13 AM

    Way back in the eighties, before I learned the value of a dollar (gosh I sound old but boy was I dumb), my dh and I bought a new stroller like this and it came with all sorts of goodies. Cost us around $800 !! Yes, naive. Young and no family or Internet to advise us. But we loved that thing and used it till it got shabby after four kids. We kept it in our room for a bassinet when we weren’t strolling around with it. And it came with a regular seat for when the baby got older. Wow, thanks for the walk down memory lane!! I always thought you could make a great go-cart out of it. If it doesn’t sell you’ll have to try it.

    1. J. Money June 26, 2013 at 12:39 PM

      Wowwww you guys were high rollers! Haha… but jeez, it lasted through 4 kids so maybe it was worth it in the end, ya know? They seem really well built.

  18. Tahnya Kristina June 22, 2013 at 11:39 AM

    Oh Wow my boyfriend LOVES that show. I don’t know ihow real it is but I have always wanted to try it out in real life :-) I’m glad you took one for the team on that Jay! Lil’ Baby Money is going to be styling.

  19. Shafi June 23, 2013 at 3:02 AM

    Don’t you love summers!

  20. Thomas June 23, 2013 at 1:46 PM

    Thats one pimp stroller J Money! Even got the white walled tires lol. Nice one I would keep that one though for a few more years and then but it in the antique. The right person would gladly spend more then 100$ for that one.

    1. J. Money June 26, 2013 at 12:41 PM

      I thought the same thing when I saw the tires actually ;) Big pimpin’!