Gumtree, owned by eCommerce giant eBay, said more than half of the 1,000 people surveyed for its latest annual report into the “second-hand economy” had admitted to dumping their preloved belongings rather than selling them because they felt time-poor.
The report said on average, people had about 25 unused items worth about $4,200 per household with Baby Boomers being guilty of having more items lying around than younger generations.
“Australians are a nation of hoarders, with 89% of the population possessing unwanted or unused items,” the report said.
“This means that many Australians are missing out on potentially making thousands of dollars from the sale of items they no longer need or use.”
The most common unwanted items include clothing, shoes and accessories (65%), followed by books (57%) , music, DVDs and CDs (54%), games and toys (48%) and electronic goods (47%).
Gumtree has estimated the second-hand economy to be potentially worth $34 billion and said about 100 million used goods were sold over the past 12 months with online being the most popular way of offloading those items.
It also estimated the number of first-time online sellers of preloved goods to be about 1.3 million in the past year.
Unsurprisingly, millennials were the biggest users with 61% of them having sold unwanted goods online in the past year compared to 54% of Gen X and 51% of Baby Boomers.
Millennials made more money than other generations from selling unwanted items online, they were also more likely to consider using that money to contribute to a deposit for a home, compared to Gen X and Baby Boomers.
The most commonly sold second-hand items include clothing, shoes and accessories, home décor and furniture, games and toys and electronic goods.