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By Martha C. White
January 6, 2016
The headquarters of The RealReal in San Francisco.
The headquarters of The RealReal in San Francisco.
Eric Risberg—AP

Other people’s New Year’s resolutions could be a boon for bargain hunters: Secondhand and consignment websites say more people clean out closets and unload unwanted goods at this time of year, including clothes they’ve never even worn and still have the tags on. As a result, there’s arguably no better time of year to browsing for deals on desirable duds.

Online secondhand stores like The RealReal and thredUP, which resell designer clothes and accessories see a big uptick in new inventory come January, according to CNBC. The RealReal, which focuses on luxury brands, said that nearly 40% of its inventory had tags still on it at the end of the last holiday season, compared to just 4% new-with-tags (or NWT in thrifter parlance) at other times of the year.

In many cases, these aren’t out-of-style or worn-out items people are looking to unload. Part of the New Year’s surge at sites like these is due to people trying to make money off unwanted holiday gifts, or finally getting over their guilt about getting rid of a brand-new item. If you want to score a deal, though, you have to move fast: CNBC said 80% of the items on The RealReal are sold within three days of being listed.

Even if one of your resolutions was to cut back on buying anything new (even new-used) for a few months, that’s fine too. These online, high-end thrift stores said they also get a surge of new inventory around springtime, when people tackle spring cleaning projects and clean out closets.

Advertiser Disclosure

The purpose of this disclosure is to explain how we make money without charging you for our content.

Our mission is to help people at any stage of life make smart financial decisions through research, reporting, reviews, recommendations, and tools.

Earning your trust is essential to our success, and we believe transparency is critical to creating that trust. To that end, you should know that many or all of the companies featured here are partners who advertise with us.

Our content is free because our partners pay us a referral fee if you click on links or call any of the phone numbers on our site. If you choose to interact with the content on our site, we will likely receive compensation. If you don't, we will not be compensated. Ultimately the choice is yours.

Opinions are our own and our editors and staff writers are instructed to maintain editorial integrity, but compensation along with in-depth research will determine where, how, and in what order they appear on the page.

To find out more about our editorial process and how we make money, click here.

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