|The Sims 3 Ambitions|
|Professions||Bake Sales||Consignment Shop||Simbot||Inventing||Sculpting|
The Sims 3 Consignment Shop
Earning Money from this Feature in Ambitions
About The Sims 3's Consignment Store
The Sims 3 Consignment Store was introduced with the Ambitions expansion pack. The shop is a place to sell your items, and is featured in the skill journal. You can get better at being a salesman by continuing to use the shop and completing skill challenges. With this guide, we'll learn to make the most of this new Sims 3 feature, and overcome any bugs associated with consignment in general.
Getting Started at Consignment
There is a consignment shop in every town in The Sims 3. Open from 9:30AM to 6:00PM every day of the week. To use the store, head there during hours of operation and click the counter and select buy. At the top of the screen there is a consign tab. This will show all items available for sale through your personal and family inventory. It's best to have a single Sim in the household handle all sales, as they will get better. Their progress as a salesman is viewable in the skill journal.
Choosing Good Traits for Your Salesman
First and foremost, there's the Born Salesman/Saleswoman trait. This will increase the rate at which your Sim gains reputation, receives positive feedback, and boost item sales values by about 25%. It's crucial if you want to make the most of the consign ability.
Secondly, your Sim should specialize in one of the self-employment skills below. Traits like artistic, savvy sculptor, green thumb, and angler will help a lot. Not only will this boost the rate you gain the skills, but often improve the quality (and thus price) of your wares. For that reason, specialization is more important than spreading out. I heartily recommend sculpting, painting, or nectar making. All three of these skills lead to creations that rise in value over time, giving you even more earning potential by stockpiling your products.
It's worth noting that when you choose your Sim's home, if you're going to be doing a lot of consignment shop runs, it would be wise to choose a lot nearby. This can save a lot of travel time, especially if you go there every day as recommended.
Your Relationship with the Consignment Clerk Does Not Matter
I cheated to raise my relationship to best friends with the clerk to see if it would somehow help sales. Unfortunately, it doesn't, which doesn't make a whole lot of sense. It seems shoppers would be directed to the wares of the friend of the clerk but they are not. So, don't waste your time chatting them up unless your Sim just wants another friend. It might not be a bad idea since sellers will likely see the clerk every day when they come to put things up for sale, helping with the social need and giving the Sim more time to create products at home.
A Tip for a Fast Start on the Consignment Skill
If your Sim has born salesman, take $1,000 Simoleons and head to the supermarket. Buy 99 Lettuce and 99 Apples for 5 Simoleons each. Head to the store around 2:30 and consign all 99 (use the quantity boxes to make this easier). My test Sim managed to sell over 100 of the items at $10 each, making all her money back. This immediately earned her an Excellent reputation, lowering the consignment fees for future purchases. On the second day, most of the produce sold and she also achieved the Consignment Store Profit Challenge, which seems to increase the likelihood that you'll get more sales in a single day. In fact, once your Sim gets good at selling, they can generally buy items and get more money than they paid for them, leading to infinite cash.
Avoiding Bugs related to the Consignment Shop
As a guide writer, I hate having to warn folks about bugs. Unfortunately, there are ongoing issues with the consignment shop. While it seems sales counting toward self-employment career earnings have been fixed, there are a few other things to watch out for:
- Consign Items before 3PM: There is a bug that can strike some players rendering the consignment shop broken. Saving the game just before you put items up for sale can allow you to reload should this bug strike. In the dozen hours or so that I worked on this, the bug never struck however you may not be so lucky. I didn't save, but I would have sorely regretted not following this advice if the bug struck.
- Sell Every Day: The more days an item is up for sale, the further its price will drop as a fee for keeping it stocked. One trick I learned is to head in about 2:30, put items up, and after the sell dialog box appears at 5, click the counter and cancel consignments. Return the next day to put them up again. This will keep the timer at 5 days. It will also help prevent issues where you can't add additional items to the list (buy will be greyed out). Cancelling consignments is the only way to fix this. You may even have to resort to the first tip and reload the game.
- Designate a Single Sim to do your Consignment Shop Runs: It doesn't have to be the Sim who makes the goods, in fact it might be more productive to have another do the selling. The point is that since consignment is a 'skill', you want one Sim in particular to get good at it.
- If Sales Stop, Replace the Shop: A reader reported that if you delete the shop in edit town and place a new one, sales may start working again for you. The items you had up for sale will still be there with the new shop in place.
Skills Good for Consignment Sales
What you can sell at the shop
Most any self employment profession can sell their wares at the store, and will receive significantly more money than selling items through the inventory interface. Here's a rundown of the types of skills that benefit:
- Fishing: This one is a no brainer. While you can sell fish at the supermarket and earn more money over selling through the inventory, selling them for over double value with the right traits and consignment challenges completed will blow this out of the water.
- Gardening: Similar to fishing above, you can sell produce at the consignment shop. The only things that can't be sold are death flowers and money tree bags.
- Inventing: All inventions can be sold, and are very lucrative. In fact, with consignment maxed out you can make nearly $2,000 Simoleons per hour selling flying fighters for about $403 a pop. Note that some items like the miner will degrade in value over time. It's best to make your fighters early in the day and sell them by 3pm at the shop daily. It seems that these types of items don't devalue when placed in the family inventory, but it would be annoying moving all those fighters. The valuable Time Machine however, goes directly to the family inventory.
- Nectar Making: This skill is especially good to pursue along with gardening, provided you have World Adventures and can travel. See our Nectar Recipes for info on good blends. The big perk here is that patient players can age them in a quality nectar rack in the basement and sell them for a high markup at the consignment shop when satisfied with the price. Naturally, the longer, the better.
- Painting: Paintings are a good way to make cash at the consignment shop. After all, they do rise in value and can also be used to decorate your Sim's home. Grab extra creative to boost profits further. Start with small paintings to help your Sim complete all the painting challenges. See our skill guide for more information on maximizing profit, and keep your skill opportunity slot to watch out for the awesome Fresco opportuity which will boost the value of all future paintings.
- Photography: Practice photography around town to get your levels up and unlock new photography options, then head to travel spots and get those valuable first time shots to maximize profit.
- Relic Hunting: World Adventures owners can travel, gather a collection of relics and consign them when they get home. Excavate for relics, visit the relic vendors, and explore tombs to make plenty of money to fund your expeditions.
- Sculpting: This one is great. Be sure to get Savvy Sculptor if your primary goal is consignment. You won't miss the woohooium and Fluorite as they can't be consigned (like all gems and metals). Let sculptures age as long as you can so their present value will increase. Focus on one sculpture design (I suggest topiaries). Be careful selling ice sculptures as they may melt and you'll be left with a puddle in your inventory.
- Writing: The skill will work normally, giving your Sim their weekly royalty checks, but it gives them something to do with those complimentary copies of books they've offered. You can even order back copies relatively cheap from the computer and put them in the consignment shop when they arrive in the mail.
Consignment Skill Journal Challenges
Consignment Store Reputation
This is an important one. Consignment fees eat into your net profit, and achieving the necessary Impressive reputation will make the fee $0, even when selling a lot of items totaling near $100,000 Simoleons.
Consignment Store Sales
This one is a bit ambiguous. It reminds me of the last expansion and how they forgot to tell us what the Martial Arts challenges did, along with tracking numbers to tell you how you're doing. My best guess for this challenge is that after 150 sales, you're more likely to sell more of your inventory. Prior to completing this challenge I did a test, putting up 50 robot toys for sale. Only 22 of them sold. Later, after achieving this, I was able to get up to 68% of 50 flying fighters sold. To complete this easier, focus on selling bulk smaller items (like my apples/lettuce tip earler in this guide).
Consignment Store Profit
This one seems less confusing to me. After selling the 25,000 worth of goods my profit per sale seemed to increase.
Thoughts on Challenges
While it's hard for me to nail down what each does, I can tell you that none of these are particularly difficult to complete. I'd like to extend a formal invitation to anyone with detailed information on how these affect sales to either email firstname.lastname@example.org or post information on the corrections board at our Sims 3 Forum.
Augmenting the Skill with Lifetime Rewards
I ran a lot of tests to see how certain rewards might affect profit or the percentage of sales. I went so far as to try opportunistic, eye candy, profession simoleon booster and the like, but came up with nothing. The primary reward you want as soon as possible is Suave Seller, which will boost consignment profits by a whopping 25%!
Lifetime rewards that boost skills like Artisan Crafter, Efficient Inventor, Super Green Thumb and Acclaimed Author may help depending on what types of items you're selling. If your Sim is hunting relics through travel in World Adventures, Learned Relic Hunter may come in handy.
If you'll be stockpiling items that increase in value over time, consider the No Bills Ever LTR. Those small daily ticks in an item's worth will actually be 235% more valuable when consignment is maxed out. This can save you more money, as having expensive items on the property will raise your weekly bills by quite a lot.
Otherwise look for rewards that make your Sim more productive/give them more time during the day - Steel Bladder, Meditative Trance Sleep, Hardly Hungry, and Carefree.
The End Result: The Master of Consignment
The Consignment Shop, while a bit buggy, is an excellent addition to The Sims 3. When fully maxed out, you'll sell most items in a single try and only have to cancel a few to put them back up again. With all the bonuses combined Simmers can expect to sell their products at 235% of their original value. That is, a small painting worth $976 will sell for $2289 with no consignment store fee. All the self employment options in The Sims 3 were viable for making a decent living, but using the consignment shop sets them over the top.
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