Natalie, Christine and Vicki are three mommies who met while their children attended a local preschool and elementary school. They shared the common goal of trying to find the best deals possible for the items their children need while suffering from houses cluttered full of items that the children no longer used.
1. Please tell us about your business and the service that you provide: We wanted to offer an opportunity for other parents to sell their children’s outgrown gently used items in a safe and secure location at our seasonal consignment sales. Our sales attract families who are looking for amazing deals on the stuff that they need and we all feel better about reusing and recycling – we also donate items to several local charities that provide assistance to families in need.
2. What motivated you to start your business? The lack of local seasonal consignment sales and the challenge of having stuff clutter our closets, garages and grandparent’s homes!
3. What kind of background or expertise do you have in your field? We three mommies have over thirty collective years of start up and corporate experience in the fields of human resources, real estate, insurance, accounting, finance and marketing. But, first and foremost, we are mommies and that takes up the majority of time for us.
4. What trends do you see in your current industry? Unfortunately the economic outlook for the country is not so positive. For this reason, we feel that offering families a place to make needed cash for items they would usually give away – benefits us all. We are also very concerned about the environment – we are mommies, of course, and worry about what the planet will be like for our children – so providing a place for families to reuse and recycle gives us peace of mind that we can all make a difference.
5. What are the most demanding aspects about your business? Starting a business in any economy is tough but we want to be especially careful about the security and safety of our buyers, sellers and all the families that come to visit us. For this reason, we are careful to check all items to ensure that they haven’t been recalled and we strive to make the experience the best possible for everyone involved. And, that takes a lot time!
6. What are the most rewarding aspects about your business? Helping mommies and daddies who might not have been able to afford all the items they want to buy for their growing families purchase needed items and seeing sellers unload their homes of clutter and get checks right after the sale!
7. What advice would you give to someone interested in starting a business like yours? Talk to every expert you can – real estate, marketing, lawyers, professional mommies, grandparents – everyone. Sometimes you will receive a gem from someone that will turn your life around!
8. What are you most proud of as a parent-preneur? That we can still spend time with our precious families while helping other families and the community in many ways.
9. How have you been able to balance your time between work and your family? It’s a constant challenge – but isn’t that what mommies do best – juggle, juggle, juggle! We love it!
10. What has been the most effective way for you to promote and market yourself? Word of mouth for now, every time we speak with another mommy we hear the same thing “it’s so frustrating, we have such great stuff and the kids don’t want, or need the items anymore – consigning is a no brainer – and much easier to do than selling on eBay, Craig’s list or at a garage sale”
Finally: What does your “Milk Money” provide for you and your family?
My Milk Money Pays for…my beautiful little girl (7) who is funny and so creative… and my gorgeous “little guy” (5) who likes to be silly and loves all sports!