Library of ideas
Library of Ideas

crucible of experience
Crucible of Experience

stairway to a fortune
Stairway to a Fortune

Treasury of Tales
Treasury of Tales

Vault of Old Videos
Vault of Old Videos

Portfolio of Motivation
Portfolio of Motivation

Table of Negotiation
Table of Negotiation

Additional articles:

Get Rich After Retirement

Never Break the Copper Rule!

Barter Page

Step Eighteen to a Fortune:

image of gerbil cage


Experiment Title

Gerbil Cage gets a Second Chance.


My neighbor was doing a clean-up project and set a nice plastic gerbil cage out for waste collection. 

I asked if I could buy it, but he just gave it to me.



The overview of steps calls for an investment of up to $4.17 for a sale of $4.59 or more.  I did a search of completed auctions on ebay and saw that gerbil cages like this one were selling for enough to justify some expense to refurbish for a profit.

From $96.35 in reserve capital, I plan to risk up to $4.17 for an expected receipt of $4.59 or greater.  That should yield a gross profit of $0.42 or more.

Step 18

Starting capital                                    $96.35

Planned investment     risk                      $4.17

Investment receipt goal                           $4.59



One Man's Trash is Another Man's Inventory




Research shows similiar cages are going for substantial money.

I had to clean out some old cedar chips.  The bottom of the cage was just starting to rust, so I cleaned it well.  I also polished the metal with a buffing attachment on a drill.  There was a round hole in the cage which indicated a missing part.  I found a part in a pet store (a climbing tower or something) and bought it for around five dollars.

I listed the cage and it sold.


I sold the the refurbished cage for 15.50

The scrap sold for $4.50. I may have had $.50 worth of gas expense. I had a net profit of $4.00

Actual investment                                   a gift from neighbor


Total expenses                                                      $ 5.50

Gross Profit or loss  this deal                                             $10.00


Ending gross capital  (before deductions)            $106.35



What did I learn? I learned that rehab can be a profitable way to grow capital.  Some people long for the chance to rehab houses but they don't have the money to make such an investment.  If they would think smaller, they could rehab pet houses or build bird houses and grow into their dream.  Rather than starting at a level they could handle, they just dream about levels they couldn't handle well if they had the money.



Conclusion or Final Result

There are opportunities that other people are not interested in pursuing.  There is no shortage of opportunities! 

I started with $96.35 in capital. I was looking to risk $4.17 in hopes of growing it to $4.59. After the sale before tax and charitable deductions I had  $106.35.

35% tax on profit of $10 would be $3.50.  That leaves $102.85

As a good person we pay 10% or $1.00 for a worthy cause

leaving $101.85 for investment and surplus to cover bad deals.

Now I am a hundred aire!


Next Step 19