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Buy second-hand products

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By purchasing second-hand goods from an opportunity shop, you are supporting a charity, getting a bargain and reducing the resources required to satisfy your consumption needs.

From eBay to the trading post, garage sales to the local op shop, there are a host of ways to grab a second-hand bargain. The common adage that a new car loses 20 per cent of its value when you drive it off the lot applies even more so to most other goods. By getting into second-hand gear you'll save thousands of dollars every year; discounts on second-hand items would put most sales to shame. Need a T-shirt? You can spend up to $100 on a new one or browse your local op shop and pick one up for $2, with the proceeds going to charity. From an environmental perspective, purchasing second-hand goods extends the life of the thing you are buying and defers or avoids the need for more resources to be used in making a new product.

How to do it now!

Visit your local op shop - Op shops exist to provide cheap goods and support charities focused at helping the poor and ailing members of our community. They are generally staffed by volunteers and always have a bargain or two; or three...

  • Lifeline - Wyong
    43 Howarth St, Wyong NSW 2259 02 4353 2632
  • St Vincent De Paul Store - Wyong
    124 Railway Street, 
Wyong NSW 2259
02 4353 1344
  • Tuggerah Salvos Store
    182 Pacific Highway Wyong NSW 2259 (02) 4351 5873
  • Lifeline - Killarney Vale
    128 Wyong Rd, Killarney Vale NSW 2261 02 4332 8499
  • St Vincent De Paul Store - The Entrance
    11 Victoria Street, The Entrance NSW 2261 02 4332 3776
  • The Smith Family - Bateau Bay
    8 Community Road, Bateau Bay NSW 2261 02 4334 7844
  • Anglican Church Opportunity Shop
    2 Tyrell Place, Bateau Bay NSW 2261 02 4332 6129
  • Lifeline – Toukley
    45 Canton Beach Rd Toukley NSW 2263 02 4397 1355
  • St Vincent De Paul Store – Toukley
    332 Main Rd, Toukley NSW 2263 02 43963001
  • Toukley Salvos Store
    28 Canton Beach Rd, Toukley NSW 2263 02 43972188

Check out the local street markets and garage sales - These are another source of great deals, and can also be an opportunity to meet your neighbours. The Garage Sale Trail site provides a growing list of garage sales across Australia. Look for signs on a light pole, in the community paper or on café notice boards to find out where and when.

Buy second hand goods online - Try reading The Choice Buying Guide: Second-Hand Goods', which describes the rights and responsibilities of buyers and sellers of second-hand gear.

Some online sites from which to buy (and sell) second-hand goods:

And for sites which list free goods try:

Additional resources

  • Etsy - An online community for buying and selling hand-made things (though not necessarily second-hand).

Why is this action important?

Reusing existing products has a two-fold effect on the environment. It reduces the need to extract more materials from nature and it circumvents large amount of concentrated (and often toxic) man-made materials entering the environment and having to be processed by nature.