This post is part 4 of a 6 part series explaining steps to take when starting a flea market business, selling merchandise sourced from the liquidation industry. If you’ve missed the first three posts, be sure to read post one, two, and three first.

Now the fun part, purchasing liquidation merchandise! With this step, you need to understand that costs associated with liquidation merchandise will vary depending on what and how much you purchase at any one time. For purposes of this flea market series, I’m opting to go with mixed general merchandise from either Walmart, Target, Shopko, or other similar stores. Whatever deal I can find, will dictate what I purchase.

If you have been following along I have $777.00 to spend on inventory. I’m going to try my best to not spend all of the budgeted cash, as I will need some petty cash for making change when I set up my booth.

When purchasing customer returns by the pallet, you must factor in freight costs if you do not pick the pallet up yourself. As a general rule, figure between $150 for the first pallet and add approximately $100 for the second pallet for freight costs (obviously this cost will vary). This can eat into a budget quickly, so it’s best to find a liquidator close to your home where you can go and pick up pallets in person.

I spent the better part of one morning looking through my suppliers warehouse and decided to go with pallets of Target general merchandise returns. I bought two pallets at $350.00 each, leaving me with $77.00

Once I brought the pallets home, I broke them down going through each to sort merchandise. I was surprised to find a great number of coffee makers, personal heaters, humidifiers, and other housewares. Upon testing the items, I felt confident that I could make a good profit with my purchase.

Once all merchandise has been sorted, it’s time to price items out. Don’t miss our next post in this series, where we will talk about pricing items for thew flea market.


Our 2020 Liquidators Guide chronicles 12 years of wholesale product sourcing experience and includes my personal black book of direct source contacts! As an industry expert, I'll share the success I've enjoyed along with the mistakes I've made buying and reselling liquidation merchandise.

If you are thinking about buying pallets of liquidation merchandise from a liquidator, broker, or direct from department stores, you need to check out The Liquidators Guide