Sponsored by Oregon Business

Recession creates buyback boom

| Print |  Email
Articles - March 2010
Friday, February 26, 2010
Top: Everyday Music in Portland.
Bottom: Powell's Books in Portland.

Oregon’s affinity for recycling extends further than putting tin cans and scrap paper on the curb once a week. Storeowners throughout the state who offer customers the option of selling their books, CDs or clothes for cash or in-store credit are noticing that the recession has caused the buyback culture to increase dramatically.

“In the last two years, we have seen an increase of people coming to us for extra money,” says Jessica Pelley, the media coordinator for Crossroads Trading Company, a used-clothing store in southeast Portland.

“There’s definitely been more people selling CDs and vinyl, just to help pay the bills,” says Terry Currier, the owner of Portland’s Music Millennium.

Offering only cash, Music Millennium pays between $1 and $10 for a CD, depending on what it is and the quality. The number of customers selling CDs, Currier says, has doubled in the last three years.

Evon White, the owner of Smith Family Books in Eugene, says customers seeking cash for books have increased by 20%. “It’s one source of end-of-the-month cash,” she says. Books sales also have increased.

Powell’s Books in Portland offers cash or 20% more in in-store credit. John Guetschow, director of used books, was expecting a rush of people selling books for cash as the recession began in full force in September 2008. He was surprised to find there was a major increase in customers seeking in-store credit. Guetschow thinks the recession has affected book budgets. “They have to sell books to get books,” Guetschow says. The number of customers taking in-store credit has increased by 20 to 30 people per day.

That isn’t the case in Salem. Beth Kinman has turned away customers from her bookstore Book Habit because she only offers trade. “They’re trying to get money to survive on rather than to get more books.”

Doug Peabody, the owner of Open Book in Bend, says demand increased in the last year by as much as 25%. “I had to get incredibly more selective because I couldn’t afford to keep shelling out cash,” he says.

The increase in people selling their possessions isn’t just about money. White says there is a group of customers purging their book collections partly in reaction to the recession and people’s sudden dislike for credit cards, overspending and materialism. “[They] want fewer belongings as part of their lifestyle,” she says. “Rather than accumulating or collecting, they feel more comfortable with reading it and then moving it out of the house.”



Brenda Ray Scott
0 #1 Brenda Ray Scott 2010-03-16 12:09:03
Evon White, the owner of Smith Family Books says it best: “[They] want fewer belongings as part of their lifestyle,” she says. “Rather than accumulating or collecting, they feel more comfortable with reading it and then moving it out of the house.”

It's great that Ms. Waldroupe elicited comments from Terry Currier and Doug Peabody. They represent an amazing amount of wisdom and expertise when it comes to retail and resale, which is reflected in the success of their respective stores.

While I still do have many material items(as does my husband), we are accumulating fewer items and at a much slower rate as we focus on creating space for more life experiences.
Quote | Report to administrator

More Articles

Light Reading

September 2015
Thursday, August 20, 2015

Ask any college student: Textbook prices have skyrocketed out of control. Online education startup Lumen Learning aims to bring them down to earth.


Summer of acquisition

Wednesday, September 09, 2015


The List: 100 Best Nonprofits to Work For in Oregon

October 2015
Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Oregon Business magazine’s seventh annual 100 Best Nonprofits to Work For project attracted more than 150 nonprofits from around the state from a variety of sectors, including social services and environmental advocacy.  More than 5,000 employees and volunteers filled out the survey, rating their satisfaction with work environment, mission and goals, career development and learning, benefits and compensation, and management and communications.


Child care challenge

September 2015
Wednesday, August 26, 2015
0927OHSUhealthystarts-thumbBY KIM MOORE AND LINDA BAKER

Child care in Oregon is expensive and hard to find. We delved into the numbers and talked to a few executives and managers about day care costs, accessibility and work-life balance.


The God complex

Linda Baker
Wednesday, September 30, 2015
093015-zydellren-thumbBY LINDA BAKER | EDITOR

The media coverage about Pope Francis must have put me in a Biblical frame of mind. Because after touring the latest phase of the South Waterfront development, a mind boggling 1.5 million square feet of office and retail space that will spring up north of the aerial tram over the next few years, I couldn’t stop thinking about the massive project as a modern day creation story.


The 10 most successful crowdfunding campaigns in Oregon

The Latest
Wednesday, August 19, 2015
081915-crowdfundingmainBY JACOB PALMER | DIGITAL NEWS EDITOR

One of the hottest new investment trends has proven quite lucrative for some companies.


Adjusting to the New Economy

October 2015
Monday, September 28, 2015

A conversation with Jonathan Bennett, managing partner at law firm Dunn Carney Allen Higgins & Tongue.

Oregon Business magazinetitle-sponsored-links-02