I finished my first eBay sale today.  I feel so accomplished.

I recently bought some used XBox games at Electronic Boutique.  I can't say that I have ever really been happy with my ElBo experiences, but I keep going back there for some reason.

The games that I got were Fatal Frame and Blackstone.  Fatal Frame is a kind of weird adventure game where you take pictures of ghosts that appear in order to steal their essense or something.  I didn't really like it because there were cut scenes every 30 seconds of something trivial that could have been eliminated.  The control was also bad.

Blackstone was a good game, but it's very complex for the type of game that it is.  The screen gets a little cluttered, and it doesn't look as good as D&D Heroes.

I decided to take the games back to the store to trade them in for something else.  After all, these games are on the shelf for about $50 - even on the used side of the store.

I spent a half hour or so looking for a game to buy instead of the two I had.  I figured that they'd give me at least enough for both of the games to cover a new game.  I chose a racing game.  The price was about $50.

When I got to the counter and told the guy that I wanted to trade in my games, he took them and inspected them.  They were both in good condition.  Barely played.  Then he said, "$15 for each."

$15 for each?  $!%?  What kind of trade-in deal is that?  They're selling it on the shelf for close to $50.  Even reselling them at $25 (half of the new cost) they'll be making $10 on a 60% markup!  Nothing should be that easy.

There is a certain convenience factor with dropping games off at the store and taking the crappy trade-in value.  But the thing is, there's a better way.

I told the guy to forget it.  After all, I spent a lot of money on those games originally, and I wasn't going to take such a huge hit on my trade.  As he offered it, I would give him two games and $20 to receive one game.  Totally not worth it.

On Sunday, I listed Fatal Frame on eBay.  I really didn't know what I was doing, but it was really easy to figure out.  I used my regular eBay buying account and clicked on the link to sell stuff.  A half hour later (after taking and uploading pictures) I had an item for sale on eBay.

I elected to include a buy-it-now option for $26.50.  I figured that this price was what I was expecting from EB, plus the eBay listing fees.  Since the shipping is charged separately, I didn't have to worry about adding that to the listing price.

Only 3 hours later, my game was bought at the buy-it-now price.  Sold!

After having some troubles sending out invoices (now that I know PayPal has an automatic way to do it, I won't do it any other way) I finally got a response from the buyer.  Actually, it was simply money in my PayPal account.

eBay automatically deducted their fees from the payment, which turned out to be $0.30 more than expected.  But I set a flat rate of $4 for shipping, and by printing USPS online shipping labels, I saved $0.15 from the shipping fees and still get Delivery Confirmation.

One neat thing about the PayPal payments is that I recently signed up for this PayPal debit card.  It's not a credit card.  It's just like a bank check card except that it's tied to the credit (actual money) that is in my PayPal account.  After the payment for this game I had $34 or so in my PayPal account.  I used the debit card to pay for the postage, which came right out of my PayPal payments.

The really neat part about this card is that after I sell my other game on eBay, I'll be able to walk right into Electronics Boutique and do exactly what I set out to do in the first place - buy that new game.  I won't even have to handle any cash!

I have a couple more games to sell, obviously, and I hope they will go as smoothly.  If so, I'll try selling some of the bigger stuff that Berta had been complaining that I hadn't done already.