Recycling

More ways to earn passive income recycling ink cartridges

I’ve written about making money with ink cartridges before. I think it’s an incredibly easy and great way to build a steady passive income without much effort.

I believe that finding the right locations where a lot of ink cartridges and toner are used are the critical factors in building a successful side income from ink cartridge collection. In my earlier post on the topic I talked about location placement with medical offices and law offices. In many areas, medical offices are often grouped together and I still believe placement in these locations is a great idea. Building relationships with the office managers is important.

Another great location placement idea for building a passive income business recycling ink cartridges is in or near schools. Schools make massive amounts of copies and printouts. Schools have all sorts of printers and copiers that consume a wide variety of ink cartridges and toner cartridges. Establishing locations in or near schools to collect ink cartridges provides numerous benefits, including:

  • Positive environmental impact by recycling ink & toner cartridges that would normally end up in a landfill
  • Placement in schools can provide a teaching and learning opportunity for teachers and students to learn about the benefits of recycling and reducing waste
  • Establishing a partnership with one or more groups or programs within a school that will provide them with a financial benefit for partnering with you (more on this below)

There are many opportunities to partner with schools to build your ink cartridge recycling business. Any type of school that prints anything can make a good partner and provide an ongoing passive income for your business.

Local School Districts

Traditional public schools in your community will usually have computers and printers in all of the classrooms. Even a small elementary school may have 20 or 30 printers. Often times there will be a single person or office that is dedicated to purchasing within a school or school district.

In other cases, introducing yourself to groups and the people that run extra-curricular activities at a school can be the driver for getting access to their ink cartridges. You can easily create a financial incentive for school groups to help you. Propose to them that you’re willing to donate a portion of the proceeds that you earn from their collection of ink cartridges to their program. Most school programs will dive at the chance to bring in extra money just by placing an ink cartridge collection box near their office. It’s also important to encourage them to notify the parents of the students in their program that they are collecting ink cartridges for recycling and they’ll make money from the effort.

Partnering with a school program like this can be a lucrative operation. Between the ink cartridges that are used by the school and any that are brought in by students it can add up quickly. In my experience with partnering with the music programs at three local middle schools and two local high schools I collect on average of around 100 ink cartridges per month during the school year. Since I’ve found a couple of different companies that are paying me around $3 per ink cartridge, I’m able to earn around $200 for myself and donate $100 per month towards the schools music programs. It’s a win-win for both of us and it only takes me a couple of hours per month to pick up the ink cartridges and sort them for recycling.

Colleges & Universities

Another place that I have found that is a great placement location for ink cartridge recycling collections is local colleges and universities. In particular, student dormitories.

Using a similar approach as I have with local public school music programs, I have made partnership with residence hall directors that provides a donation in exchange for putting a e-waste recycling collection box  in the lobby area of the dorm.

Most dorms have hundreds of students and all of them are constantly printing papers and projects for their classes. Each of the locations that I have partnered with in the dorms of a local university provides me with around 50 to 60 ink cartridges per month, per location, and they’ve been increasing every month since I started placing them there. So far at one local university I have four dorm locations and it only takes me about an hour or two every month to collect the ink cartridges and sort them for recycling. From these locations alone I earn around $600 per month for just a few hours work and donate back around $150 per month to the dorms.

As an added bonus, a couple of students have put old cell phones and batteries in the collection boxes. I have been able to resell the cell phones for a few extra dollars each and the batteries have been added to my scrap metal collection.

Start up supplies

There are a couple of things that you need in order to ensure successful ink cartridge collection this way. Each location needs a sturdy collection box that is clearly labeled with what you’re collected. I’ve used both cardboard boxes and plastic containers designed for e-waste collection. In my experience the plastic containers cost a little more but last longer. The plastic bins also look more professional and can easily handle being located in a busy corridor.

 

double-bin-with-labelsDouble Bin with replaceable label inserts available from Amazon

 

 

 

 

 

Conclusion

All together, through my partnership with local schools and universities, I’ve been earning around $1,200 per month in just a few hours work collecting and sorting ink and toner cartridges. Most of the locations continue to grow month after month. Most of the time I will stop by and do the collections while I’m out and about running other errands nearby.

 

 

 

The Top 3 Places to Sell Used Books and Textbooks

There are many opportunities to make money reselling used books. Although more and more books are becoming available as e-books, there is a still a growing demand for traditional books. This is especially true for both college textbooks as well as any regular books that may be out of print.

The obvious places to sell books online is through the Amazon.com Marketplace, eBay, or the eBay company Half.com. While there is definitely some pros and cons to using these sites, the process for selling books, managing your book inventory and following the special shipping procedures required by Amazon and eBay adds extra work and effort and minimizes your profits and ability to turn items around quickly for a profit. There is also a lot of competition selling books through Amazon and eBay and in order to sell your book quickly you may have to drop your selling price to such a low price that you lose all potential profit.

Fortunately, there are a number of other websites that will purchase your books outright and even pay the shipping. Some of these websites only deal in college textbooks, others deal in traditional books as well.

Whether you buy your used books from your local library annual sale or from the bargain bins at your local Goodwill store, these three online merchants will provide you with the best prices and fastest turnaround times for you to get your cash in hand.

 

  1. Valore Books
    To sell your books to Valore Books you will need to go on their site and enter the ISBN numbers of the books that you want to sell. If Valore Books is interested they will make an offer for your book. The turnaround time from when you get a price quote from Valore Books until the time you get paid can be a few weeks to a month, sometimes longer depending on the shipping times. Once Valore Books receives your shipment they evaluate the books that you send and will send your payment. Valore Books pays you with either a check or via PayPal.
  2. Book Scouter
    Book Scouter is an aggregator for multiple book buying vendors and is one of the more popular book buyback websites that has been around for many years. Their process is similar to others. You first enter the ISBN numbers of the books that you would like to sell and they will present you with a list price quotes from various vendors for your books. You select an offer from a vendor and are taken to that vendors website to complete the sell back transaction. Book Scouter also has a smart phone app that allows you to quickly and easily scan the bar codes from the books that you want to sell.
  3. Cash4Books.net
    Cash4Books promises fast cash for your used textbooks. From the Cash4Books website you can enter the ISBN numbers of the textbooks that you want to sell and they will give you an instant offer for what they will pay you for each of your textbooks. If you accept the offer from Cash4Books you can then print out a shipping label, put your textbooks in a box and schedule the shipment for pickup. Cash4Books will pay you either via PayPal or check, depending on your preference, after they have received and inspected your books. The Cash4Books process is simple and straight-forward. The average turnaround time from when you ship your books to Cash4Books to the time you receive your payment is typically 13 days. The turnaround time can vary depending on the shipping method that you use. Cash4Books also has a smartphone app that can be downloaded for easy ISBN scanning on the go.

While there are plenty of other sites that will buy back your used books and textbooks the top three represent the most seamless process, highest payouts and the fastest turnaround times.

Make money by reconditioning batteries

Batteries are something that we all rely on everyday. Whether it’s to get our car started in the morning, keeping our laptop’s powered throughout the day, our cell phones connected, or even getting our lawn tractor started, batteries are all around us everyday. Over time, a battery becomes less and less effective at holding a charge and keeping a useful charge. Eventually, all batteries die and a dead battery is not only expensive, but inconvenient.

Most people dispose of batteries when they fail. Often times, they are just tossed in the trash along with everything else. Occasionally, they are recycled or in the case of car batteries, returned to the auto parts store for the “core” charge. When taking a battery to a metal recycler they will give you cash for the battery based on the weight of the metals inside the battery, typically $5 to $10.

What if there was a way that you could take dead batteries that people are disposing of and recondition them and give them a new life? It’s possible to take an otherwise dead battery, refurbish it, then resell it for a huge profit.

For less than $50 you can buy a complete online course that will teach you everything you need to know about reconditioning batteries that you can resell for a huge profit. You can download the battery reconditioning course course today and start making money right away.

Click Here to Download the Battery Reconditioning Course Today

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) about battery reconditioning

  • Is Reconditioning the Same as Recharging Your Battery?
    No, reconditioning is very different from recharging. Importantly, in contrast to recharging a battery – which will restore its charge for just a limited time – when you recondition it, you can restore it to its full original capacity.
  • What types of batteries can be reconditioned?
    All types of batteries can be successfully reconditioned, from deep cycle/gel types to the usual 12V car battery. Even the newest car batteries available can be restored via standard lead acid battery reconditioning techniques.It is worth investing a little time to better understand the various battery types out there and how they are best handled to improve battery life to give you valuable background info before you take the next step of reconditioning.
  • How much money can I earn reconditioning car batteries?
    It depends. A new car battery costs somewhere between $60 to $120 depending on the type, size, capacity and manufacturer. Some speciality automotive or industrial batteries can cost as much as $500 to $1000 new. The amount of money you make from reconditioning a battery is going to depend on the size, type and capacity of the battery. But on the low end you can wholesale refurbished car batteries to local mechanics for $25 to $35 per battery. Depending on the types of batteries you are reconditioning, you can easily earn a few hundred dollars per day with just a few hours of effort.

Making Money Reselling Cardboard Moving Boxes

cardboard moving boxMoving between houses and apartments is one of those chores that no one really likes to do, but sometimes it’s necessary to do. One of the biggest expenses in moving (aside from hiring the moving company) is buying boxes and packing materials.

Moving boxes and packing materials can get expensive. Especially true if you are packing up and moving a 3 bedroom house. Moving.com estimates that to move an average 3 bedroom house with two adults it will take 45 medium boxes, 31 large boxes, 13 extra-large boxes, 9 picture boxes and 4 wardrobe boxes. With each box costing between $2.20 up to $12.00 buying boxes can add up quickly! In this case, $413! This is just for boxes!

This doesn’t include paper to wrap dishes or bubble wrap for wrapping valuables. Those are add-ons that add considerable cost to the price of moving.

After someone has invested all this money in boxes and has moved from one place to another, in most cases, inevitably, the boxes are then thrown into the garbage or recycling bin. Other times, people will post their moving boxes to the free section craigslist or one of the freecycle email list hoping that someone can reuse what they no longer need. This is where our opportunity is.

Collecting discarded moving boxes and reselling them for profit.

In most cases moving boxes can be reused 3 to 5 times before they start to fall apart. To collect boxes, just keep an eye out for online posts for people giving away free boxes. Once you’ve built up a decent collection of boxes you can post ads either online or in places like the post office, super markets, storage units offering your recycled boxes for a discounted price.

Be sure your ads show a comparison of prices between your price and the full retail price of a comparable new box so that the financial benefits are immediately noticeable by the potential buyer. I recommend pricing your boxes 30-50% lower than new boxes. The price difference, especially to a customer that knows they’re going to need a lot of boxes, will make a huge impact on their savings and will make the decision for them easy.

If you’ve got the space to store the boxes your inventory can almost be limitless. Once you’ve made a couple of sales you may be able to get a feel for some other things that people need for moving such as bubble wrap, plain newswrap paper, and packing tape. These items in bulk can be bought much cheaper from companies like uline.com and others.

For example, moving.com sells bubble wrap at a retail price around $0.20 per foot. Bought in bulk from uline.com that same bubble wrap can be as low as $0.13 per foot. There are also opportunities in tape. A case of 36 rolls of tape can be purchased for a little as $1.25 per roll while the average retail price is closer to $4.00.

In our scenario above for a 3 bedroom house, they would need at least 100 feet of bubble wrap and 3 to 4 rolls of tape. Add on items can easily increase the value of each sale by 10-25%.

Statistically people move more often in the mid to late spring months. If you plan ahead and stock your inventory through the fall and winter months you should be able to make 3 or 4 sales per week during the spring months. With the average sale $250-$300 you could easily earn $1,000 per week for very little effort.

Don’t forget to co-market your box recycling company with your ink cartridge and toner recycling income stream.

Earn money recycling inkjet and laser toner cartridges

There are many companies that are paying top dollar for used ink jet and toner cartridges. Prices range from around $1.00 for low end common inkjet cartridges and over $20 for some of the higher end laser and copier toner cartridges and drums. Many companies in your area are probably just dumping their used cartridges in the trash. There is a tremendous opportunity for you to turn their waste into a business that brings in a steady cash income stream.

Your opportunity is in collecting used cartridges from companies that are just dumping their inkjet and toner cartridges in the trash. You will want to survey the types of offices in your area that may be heavy consumers of inkjet and toner cartridges. Law firms & doctors offices consume lots of ink printing out steady stream of documents and invoices. They are a great place to start when looking scouting out locations for this opportunity. I suggest that you start by calling larger firms and ask to speak with their office manager. The office manager is most likely the person responsible for ordering and swapping out inkjet and toner cartridges.

Tell the office manager that you are an inkjet and laser toner recycler and ask how they dispose of their cartridges. They may already be in a program where they send their old cartridges back to the manufacturer for recycling. There are several manufacturers that offer this type of services. Some provide some sort of credit when returning the cartridges. However, most do not. They simply provide a shipping label to return them. If they tell you that they throw their inkjet and toner cartridges away ask if it would be possible for them to set their used cartridges aside for you to pick up once per month, or more frequently if they use a lot of ink.

They may tell you that they send their inkjet and toner cartridges back to the manufacturer for recycling. Ask them what benefits, if any, they receive from that program. Most of the time they don’t receive any benefit aside from a free shipping label to return the used toner cartridge. Tell them about how recycling with you provides local benefits.

Before you start calling think about your sales pitch. Each year more than 350 million ink cartridges will end up in land fills in North America alone. The plastics used in manufacturing ink cartridges and the trace amount of inks inside them contain toxic chemicals. If not recycled ink cartridges that end up in land fills will eventually leach those toxic chemicals into the soil.

Independent studies have proven that recycled ink cartridges have a carbon footprint that is one third that of new cartridges. Use these facts and others you find through research to become an authority on the environmental impact ink cartridges have in landfills.

Once you’ve landed an office to join your recycling program, pick a day to visit the office and meet the office manager. It’s important to have business cards printed up with your contact information. During your visit provide the office manager with your business card and schedule a date in advance when you will retrieve their cartridges for recycling. Oftentimes, they will already have some cartridges set aside for you to take with you that day.

Some companies that purchase empty and used inkjet and toner cartridges include:

Be sure to check out each sites list of cartridges that they are buying and how much they are paying for each. One company may only be paying $1.00 for a specific inkjet cartridge while another may buy the same cartridge for $5.00.

It should not take long before you’ve enrolled 10 to 15 offices in your recycling program. You should be able to visit all of the offices in one day per month. Anticipage how much you’ll be able to collect from each office by asking the office manager about their ink usage. If you can schedule your pickups on days when you’ll be able to pick up a dozen or so toner cartridges and a few dozen inkjet cartridges you should be able to resell them for a couple hundred dollars.

During your pickups, look around for other nearby offices. Walk in and speak with the receptionist and ask if there is an office manager you can speak with. If not, it may be the receptionist that also acts as the office manager. Be sure to sell her on the benefits of ink cartridge recycling and provide her with your business card and contact information.

Reselling items from craigslist, tag sales, flea markets, Goodwill and consignment shops

Reselling items you find on craigslist.org or other online classified websites can be a great stepping stone on your way to making $300 per day. craigslist.org is an online classified ad website that is broken down into regional and city based sites with dozens of categories of items for sale.

One of the categories of the site that always keeps me going back everyday is the “Free” items category. The “Free” category on craigslist is for items that people think are useful to someone else but may not have much monetary value or they just don’t want to go through the hassle of selling the item or items to another person.

This section is oftentimes a section for the thrifty to keep an eye on, but it is also a way to find items that can either be resold immediately for a profit, or may need some minor refurbishing in order to flip them for a profit. In either case it’s something to keep an eye on.

Know Your Limits

I’ve seen all categories of items given away for free on craigslist. High ticket items like cars and boats, to major appliances, to firewood. Be sure to know something about the type of items you’re getting for free ahead of time and be sure to have someplace to store the items until you’re able to resell or refurbish.

For me, I know nothing about copy machines, their maintenance or what it takes to repair them.  I’ve seen a number of copy machines in the “Free” category on craigslist. Although they are often a high value item, I avoid getting them because I don’t know enough about each and every manufacturer’s and model’s maintenance and toner replacement costs. Depending on whether the machine was maintained properly and toner readily available for a low cost will impact the resale value of the machine.

Making a Living on Craigslist

Ryan Finlay, an entrepreneur living in Portland, Oregon, built a successful business around reselling used appliances that he found on Craigslist. His story, and the lesson’s learned are inspiring. He’s an example of an entrepreneur who created an opportunity out of demand and has been making a decent living working for himself and enjoying what he does.