If you are looking for a rare or unusual item then eBay is a good place to start searching.
But whatever you are on the hunt for, you can be assured that someone is on the trail of something even more unusual. A wide array of weird and wonderful (and sometimes plain creepy) items are being sold - and bought - on eBay around the world at all times.
Buy your council house!
It is currently only a proposal by the Government, and has not yet happened, but some MPs believe that that people should be able to buy council houses on eBay!
They hope to use eBay to promote the Right to Buy scheme, saying it will be a boost to 'digital engagement'. It would also be welcome news for eBay who will stand to make a packet in fees. MPs obviously aren't too concerned about the lost revenue this might mean for them due to eBay's apparent reluctance to pay Corporation Tax in the UK!
In 2009 a young girl made the news when she tried to sell her "annoying but cuddly" grandma on eBay. Granny's stock was doing pretty well, with plenty of bids coming in, until eBay withdrew the lot as it contravened its policy on human trafficking.
Another couple's strange idea of a joke backfired when they put their baby up for sale on eBay for €1. Funnily enough social services didn't find it so amusing, and the child was taken into care while investigations were carried out.
There are plenty of vouchers that can be clipped free from newspapers and magazines up for sale on eBay.
Fast food discount vouchers for McDonalds, Burger King and KFC are popular and they generally sell pretty well. A few days ago a bunch of ten free meal vouchers for McDonals (cut from a newspaper) were sold for £1.64 (ten bids were placed) with £1.69 delivery! It may only amount to around £3 profit after postage, but if you sell enough of them it can add up.
Buyers take note: these vouchers are available for free all over the place! You can also get great deals and discounts off food by following our Frugal Food blog which comes out each Friday.
Make-up and perfume samples
There is good money to be made from selling samples – often handed out for free in department stores. There is also a market for the freebies stuck to the fronts of some glossy magazines, like mascara and lipstick.
Perfume samples can sell for around £1, but some brands see tiny 1ml vials going for around £5! Also, despite health and safety concerns, there is a market for used cosmetics with a 'pre-loved', half-finished MAC foundation selling for around £18 a bottle at the time of writing!
A single cornflake?
In 2004 a Coventry student made the news by selling a single cornflake for £1.20. The BBC reported that the student was surprised to get this sum, but that sadly he was unable to profit from his odd experiment as eBay made him withdraw the cornflake for having no 'Best Before' date on it.
Or a sprout?
He's not the only one to try this bizarre scheme. Another eccentric Brit sold a single Brussels sprout that he had cooked on Christmas Day for an impressive £99.50 (the money went to charity).
1p is worth 1p, right?
However, for coin collectors the right penny can fetch a much higher price. There are plenty on eBay of a specific vintage or mint going for £1 or more (with express, next day delivery on top for £6.50, rocketing the price even higher).
But, there is also a market for the dull, well-worn 30-year-old pennies, sold en masse. This is because the metal content of these coins is worth more than their face value. Older coins are more sought after though as new pennies are mostly made of zinc, and contain very little copper. Any penny from 1981 or earlier is 95% copper.
A UK man living in Australia made the press worldwide when he auctioned his life for the grand total of £192,000. For this price you got all his worldly goods – his home, his belongings, his jet ski, motorcycle, car and even his job (although his boss may not have been entirely on board with that one).
The man had recently been through a divorce and decided to leave his past behind in a dramatic fashion – such a dramatic fashion that Disney bought the rights to produce his story!
The list of people waiting for organ donations is growing daily and many take desperate measures to try to secure one.
And where there is demand there are those waiting to profit. A man from Florida auctioned his liver on eBay and received a number of bids. The bidding actually reached $5.7 million before eBay cancelled it and removed the posting due to its policy against the sale of human organs on the site.
It's not just current MPs who are interested in eBay. A few weeks ago website Tamebay (a great source of advice and information for eBay buyers and sellers) reported that ex-MP Andrew Mitchell was planning to sell the instrument of his downfall – the infamous 'Plebgate' bike – on eBay.
It sold for a massive £10,600 but this sum did not go into Mr Mitchell's personal coffers. It was kindly donated to a Kenyan Aids charity.
What's the strangest thing you've ever seen or sold on eBay? Let us know using the comment box below.
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