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Reply 300 of 621, by TrashPanda

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Claris wrote on 2021-12-18, 01:23:
feipoa wrote on 2021-12-18, 00:32:
I have recently spoken with a US and Canadian accountant (CPA/CGA/CA) concerning the eventual liquidation of computer items. I […]
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I have recently spoken with a US and Canadian accountant (CPA/CGA/CA) concerning the eventual liquidation of computer items. I will relay what I was told for the case of Canadian persons and for the case of US persons.

USA
In the USA, any appreciation in value for an item sold is reportable. Generally, the 0%, 15%, and 20% rates apply depending on your income threshold. However, if the item is considered a collectable, as determined by section 408(m), https://www.irs.gov/retirement-plans/investme … d-plan-accounts , then it would fall under the 28% capital gain rate. Upon reading section 408(m), there are certain classifications which easily fall under "collectable", and then there is another category, "Any other tangible personal property that the IRS determines is a "collectible". Looking for further explanation on this, it says anything the "Secretary" determines as collectible. 🤣. The accountant was hard pressed to say whether a vintage computer collection is "collectable". So I have no answer there. It is not like we are selling an Apple Lisa. However, with the current trend and inflation, it is hard to say that some of these items are not collectable. A Cyrix 5x86-133/4x for example, or a Voodoo 5 6000. There aren't many of those, they are in demand, and fetch top dollar.

Also, if you have no record of your cost basis, whether it be collectable, or not, then you are to report $0 as your cost basis on your IRS 1040-Schedule D.

Previous reading lead me to believe that yearly Paypal deposits greater than 10K greatly increase the probability of scrutiny from the IRS. They may ask where the funds came from, and if if you aren't reporting your computer items capital gains on your 1040 Schedule D, you might be in in hot water. Perhaps you can share your personal experience in this regard. In the past, I've only ever sold household items at a capital loss.

If not considered collectible, then in the US, you normally are allowed $40,400 in capital gains at a 0% rate. So if you are liquidating your "collection", then you best not sell securities in that year particular year, if they are have a gain which puts you over the 0% rate category, or 15% from 40K-435K. In Canada, we don't have anything like 0% rate on $40K worth of capital gains, even for Canadian elligible stocks. I can see why someone might want to retire in the US - living off of passive income - you get $40K free, plus another 12.5K free (e.g. REITs) if you are under your standard deduction. Wow, the USA truly is the land of plenty!

Selling computer parts isn't great for the US, unless you stay under 40K in capital gains (from all sources). But, if you have a non-citizen spouse who is not considered a US person for income tax purposes, you are allowed to gift up to $159,000 per year without triggering a gift-tax. Or you can gift up to 15K per year to your kids without the gift tax. So if you have 40K+ in capital gains for a particular year and have a non-US spouse, it may be beneficial for you to gift your collection to your non-resident spouse and have him/her sell the lot, assuming whatever country he/she is resident of has beneficial tax treatment for personal items. I suspect this would mostly be the case for US expats.

CANADA
Now for the case of Canada, if you have acquired and sold these computer items for the purpose of resale or investment, then they are not considered "personal use property", nor "listed personal property" and you must report the cost basis and sale amounts on your T1 income tax return each year. As I have never bought anything with the intention of reselling it, my computer hobby parts would be considered "personal use property" or "listed personal property". The difference being that with "personal use property", you cannot claim a capital loss, but that doesn't matter here with the current prices. I didn't ask what other difference there was between these two definitions, but what the accountant said next shocked me. He said that for personal use property or listed personal property, they automatically have a $1000 CAD cost basis. As I do not envision any single part in my lot being worth more than $1000 CAD, I can sell each item individually without having to to hassle reporting them. But for items selling for more than $1000 CAD, they need to be reported. I was told that I could lump them all up as a one-liner on the tax return., while keeping detailed records if asked for it by the CRA.

The accountant also said to check attribution rules for gifting in Canada - which I think only applies to the case in which there is some appreciation above $1000 CAD. Also, as in the case of the US, in Canada legal partners/spouses can gift to each other indefinitely, subject to some special case attribution rules, e.g. https://www.taxtips.ca/personaltax/attributio … minor-child.htm For the case of gifting to a spouse, "Your spouse or common-law partner is considered to have bought the capital property for the same amount that you are considered to have sold it for." Therefore, each gifted item also has a cost basis of $1000 CAD and is considered personal use property or listed personal property.

I did mention the intention to donate all proceeds, but he seemed to think that finding a charity to accept the whole lot was the best approach. The charity would assess the value and this amount would be used as a charitable donation on the T1. I told him I didn't think there would be a local charity willing to accept the collection and properly assess the value. Thus, my previous plan to sell individually at open auction, and donate the proceeds, is the way to go. Not having to deal with tabulating each item individually greatly simplifies the approach.

If anyone has heard contrary to this information from a reputable source, please relay the information.

That is.....a lot of words. So uhh...what does this mean for the average ma 'n pa ebay retro parts seller?

IF you live in the US the IRS is gonna be your new best friend if you decide to liquidate your collection and even if you gift it the IRS is still going to want their cut, in Canada its different for items bought for resale where the canuk IRS will want their cut but if its a personal collection not bought for resale then a different set of rules apply.

Long and short of it, the US will always get their cut in Canada it changes depending on how the item is classified but they still want their cut.

Oh noes, the cap let the shmooo out 😁

Reply 301 of 621, by MN_Moody

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Claris wrote on 2021-12-18, 01:23:

That is.....a lot of words. So uhh...what does this mean for the average ma 'n pa ebay retro parts seller?

Not a lot is known about the practical impact of changes to US Tax laws which were part of a prior COVID "relief" bill as the IRS hasn't had a full year to set precedent in their enforcement approach yet. Reporting thresholds for eBay sales and various online payment processors including Venmo and Paypal now start from $600 (formerly $20,000), meaning ANY meaningful selling you do online aside from cash and carry is fully reportable and you likely owe taxes. I believe the prior threshholds were set assuming most people doing small time sales online were simply liquating stuff they already owned and so the sale price was less than the original purchase price, so there was no gain. The paperwork to figure out profits/loss didn't make sense, but I guess the IRS, already sitting on truckloads of unprocessed tax paperwork, suddenly has time on their hands to go fishing in the bank accounts of poor sods trying to side hustle a few extra bucks on computer parts. My advice would be to document any costs you have associated with acquisition of old computer stuff as much as possible and make sure you are showing costs to offset what you are selling.

If you aren't willing to do the work to understand how this impacts you, just assume that anything you've sold on eBay or other sites is going to be reported for your 2021 taxes via the same sort of form that your employer sends you indicating what you made and what they withheld in your paychecks. Since eBay/Paypal don't withhold your estimated tax liability from what you get paid, you probably owe another 28% in taxes on whatever "income" Paypal indicates you earned which will come out of your refund or get added to your tax bill. Merry Christmas!

Reply 302 of 621, by The Serpent Rider

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what does this mean for the average ma 'n pa ebay retro parts seller?

Invest into Bitcoin! Start mining it on your vintage 486 now!

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Reply 303 of 621, by SpectriaForce

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libby wrote on 2021-12-17, 09:22:

You are going to begin seeing a dramatic shift in prices once again as even motherboards which were not sold during the capacitor plague years, will also all need recaps simply because of age. Everything with electrolytic capacitors especially the surface mount ones, so IBM, Dell, Compaq, HP and other OEM desktop systems, is going to begin to fail soon in the same way that Amiga and 68k apple systems have been for some time. PowerPC and G3 apple systems will also be needing recaps soon too.

The bad caps are going to start to kill every PC system which has not yet been unearthed and employed them, taking a decent chunk of supply off the market.

We should call it the surface mount electrolytic capacitor plague 🤣. It's mostly an issue with old 1990s Macs and IBM PS/2 than anything else. I don't really buy those anymore for a lot of money to flip for a profit, I only take them when they are (near) free and then sell as is, but not on my webshop that only contains items on which I want to offer a warranty. ​COMPAQ and HP on the other hand have generally installed pretty bullet proof hardware with polymer SMD caps in their systems in the 1990s (though some differences exist between pro and consumer grade hardware).

When things get so bad that most hardware fails to work due to capacitors going open, the hobby will eventually slowly die just like the vintage radio community has. Most people in this hobby probably don't have the time, skills, equipment or room to solder on motherboards and power supplies. People in the vintage computer hobby are now mostly in their 30s, 40s or 50s. When they become older and retirement nears the hobby will become less popular anyway (I don't think that zoomers are going to look back with fond memories at black plastic crap pc's with Geforce GTX xxx from 201x in the future). So prices might be rising now (although I think that we are already at the peak for 1980s computer hardware), they will go down in the future.

libby wrote on 2021-12-17, 01:36:

For us, there is plenty of capable and original hardware out there to build with still. People just need to learn to be less picky or less concerned with benchmark scores. I can buy or build a whole VIA Pentium 3 1GHz system or ECS K7S5A 1GHz Thunderbird system with 512MB-1GB RAM, AGP Geforce 2 MX or 4 MX 440 or whatever, SB live, linksys ethernet card, DVD-RW drive and random 80GB IDE hard drive right now with a cheap PS/2 keyboard and mouse for perhaps $75-100USD. It will install Windows 98 flawlessly and run perfectly and play probably 85-90% of games from 1995 - 2000 at their max settings without a hitch, and will play a lot of DOS games fine too. Buy a 5:4 LCD monitor at a thrift store for $10-15 and you're set. Note I am not offering this service, as this isn't a sales forum and my own build queue is extremely backlogged, but there are plenty of people out there who do.

You don't NEED a Geforce 3 TI 500 or an ASUS P3B-F with 1.4GHz Tualatin in a PowerLeap slotket or Voodoo5 5500 or whatever other particularly expensive high end hardware, just to play games at above average framerates for the period.

For some reason it seems like a lot of folks new in this hobby think that they need the fastest top of the range retro hardware to play their favorite MS-DOS or Windows 9x games. They are scared of terms like Celeron or Geforce MX, while in most cases you can perfectly use e.g. year 2000 low end hardware for 1998/1999 games and save yourself a lot of money.

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Reply 304 of 621, by Shreddoc

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It's clear that within our niche hobby area, there are in fact multiple approaches, multiple types of interaction. All working as individual cogs, together in a more complex system. That is the way it must be, because it matches the diversity of circumstance of the people themselves.

Some must scrape by with the bare minimum, and turn that into a full, worthy experience. Others are comfortable in the middle, and can get whatever they want. Some are fortunate enough that the first category's minimal treasures are barely even worth bothering with, and can instead routinely splurge hundreds of dollars on cutting-edge aftermarket niches.

Some can afford to give away a lot, which is generous. On the other hand, many need to take any $ they can get : accepting less than maximum = leaving food off their own family's table (or education, or health insurance, or decent food and clothing ... endless list ...). Which, given that choice, nobody reasonable could do.

All types of us must live together in this world.

Reply 305 of 621, by feipoa

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MN_Moody wrote on 2021-12-18, 12:59:

Reporting thresholds for eBay sales and various online payment processors including Venmo and Paypal now start from $600 (formerly $20,000), meaning ANY meaningful selling you do online aside from cash and carry is fully reportable and you likely owe taxes.

Thank you for this updated clarity. I remember having read something about this a year or so ago. The only funds going into my Paypal account are merchant refunds. If you live in the US or are a US citizen residing abroad (yes you still have to report everything to the IRS), it seems to me that the reporting effort for sales are way more than it is worth. And if you wish to try your luck flying by without reporting, it will be a sad day when faced with penalties, which are more than just their lost revenue.

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Reply 306 of 621, by badmojo

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Shreddoc wrote on 2021-12-18, 21:41:

All types of us must live together in this world.

This post was a little bit too reasonable and undramatic for this thread 😁

It doesn't matter where an individual falls on the scale of spending or collection size, it's totally their business. I seriously doubt anyone's behaviour could impact the market in any significant way but even of they could, no-one is entitled to cheap / free old computer hardware. It might have been worthless 15 years ago but it's not anymore.

I know some people have stopped sharing their collections and purchases here because of the implication that they're ruining the hobby for other people and that's a shame, because they ain't.

Life? Don't talk to me about life.

Reply 308 of 621, by Shreddoc

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maxtherabbit wrote on 2021-12-19, 00:56:
Shreddoc wrote on 2021-12-18, 21:41:

All types of us must live together in this world.

I mean we don't have to, we could fight about it

I hadn't noticed. 😁

Reply 309 of 621, by Claris

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maxtherabbit wrote on 2021-12-19, 00:56:
Shreddoc wrote on 2021-12-18, 21:41:

All types of us must live together in this world.

I mean we don't have to, we could fight about it

Honestly, seeing how this thread started off asking a dangerous question, the roasting of Libby, and now i guess us all coming to terms with this just being how the hobby works....

Nah people are gonna slapfight about it forever probably. Thats just what happens, iv seen it in the console retro gaming sphere. Best not to get too emotional over it and just enjoy the hobby anyway you can!

Reply 310 of 621, by feipoa

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Provided everyone is civil with their opinions on the subject, I enjoy reading multiple points of view, particularly when in variance to my own.

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Reply 311 of 621, by libby

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Claris wrote on 2021-12-19, 05:16:

Honestly, seeing how this thread started off asking a dangerous question, the roasting of Libby, and now i guess us all coming to terms with this just being how the hobby works....

That ain't a roast. I've had people call me all sorts of names and even actively yell at me for flipping things they wanted me to sell them at or below my cost, or things I spent hours of my time repairing for free, haha.

Entitlement is a plague.

Reply 312 of 621, by cyclone3d

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libby wrote on 2021-12-19, 19:05:
Claris wrote on 2021-12-19, 05:16:

Honestly, seeing how this thread started off asking a dangerous question, the roasting of Libby, and now i guess us all coming to terms with this just being how the hobby works....

That ain't a roast. I've had people call me all sorts of names and even actively yell at me for flipping things they wanted me to sell them at or below my cost, or things I spent hours of my time repairing for free, haha.

Entitlement is a plague.

You hit the nail on the head!

That being said, I've given away plenty of things that I spent my time working on. Just depends on what it is and if it was given to me or I paid for it in the first place.

Some people think that you should give something to them at the price they think it should be with total disregard for what it is worth.

It is like somebody going to somebody selling a house at market value for $350,000 and offering them $150,000 and then getting angry that the seller didn't accept the offer. Pure insanity.

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Reply 313 of 621, by RaiderOfLostVoodoo

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SpectriaForce wrote on 2021-12-16, 22:42:

Over the years I have bought collections from the relatives of deceased people, seriously ill and old people a couple times. They were all happy that I (almost) bought everything. They wanted to get rid of the stuff a.s.a.p. Really no one of those people cared that I was going to resell most of the stuff individually. They were happy that I bought so much and passed it on to other enthusiasts. Most people I buy from understand the amount of work involved in reselling items and they allow me to reap the benefits.

I have a story like that as well.
Two years ago, I found an interesting lot on a locals site for just 5€.
On the picture were: 3 mainboards, one with OCZ RAM. Two black and a silver floppy drive. A few DVD/CD drives, both black and white. Three Microsoft miece. Serial, PS/2 and USB (the first optical mouse). There were a few other pieces, but don't really remember what it was.
One of the boards was broken. A Winfast. Socket 939 I think. No sign of live and also no visual damage on the caps. The other two were AM2. Identical ones. One of them had bulged caps, which my buddy replaced for me. The OCZ sticks were 2x2GB Special Ops. Those are really rare. Have only seen 512MB and 1GB on Ebay so far. The black floppy drives were Alps. The silver one was Sony MPF920. Don't remember what the DVD/CD drives were, because I mixed them with my other drives. Two of them (black+white) were NEC ND3500A.
The guy kept bringing more and more boxes from his basement, while I way putting the stuff in the car. Keyboards, cables, a box with screws+covers, an early ATX Seasonic PSU, an UPS... I basically inherited all his computer parts. Interestingly few days ago I noticed that the front covers he gave me belonged to a Chieftec Dragon. There was also a set of keys. Curiously I tried if they fit into my Dragon. They do! I now finally have keys for my three Dragon cases!

Then he asked:
"Do you want an office PC? It has an AMD quadcore inside. Fully working. Just missing a HDD and needs some cleaning."
"What do you want for it?"
"Nothing. I'm glad when it's gone."
"Why are you giving me all this stuff for free?"
He then revealed his motivation. He's earning good money in IT and didn't want to sacrifice a weekend with cleaning, testing and packaging. He explicitly said: "If you can earn a hundred bucks with the parts you don't need, please do so." He also asked me to not bother him, if something doesn't work. I told him, that I'm glad if a quarter of the stuff works. He promised that most of it should work. He already got rid of most of the broken parts. Well, he was right. Beside of the broken Winfast board, there were a noname mouse and noname keyboard which don't work. Not a great loss.

He initially listed the stuff for 20€ and had two douzen people who were interested. But nobody was willing to drive to his location. They all wanted him to ship the stuff to them, but he didn't want to bother with that. So he reduced the asking price to 10€. Then 5€. He was about to reduce the price to 0. If still no one would had been willing to drive to his location, he would have given the stuff to ewaste. But that felt so wrong to him. So I relieved him of this emotional burden. There's plenty of people who are disgusted by the waste culture which is spreading through western civilization like a disease.
Should I have passed on the items I didn't want and let them go into ewaste? Hell, no! Should I give away the stuff I don't need for free? Also big no. I spend hours cleaning and testing stuff. Time is money.

Reply 314 of 621, by Blitz_25

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As some have mentioned there's still some good somwhat cheap old PC parts to be found on Ebay. What i noticed though not all that is on sale on ebay can be found on their main site but you need to scout the localized ebay sites(.de, .it, .fr...) as well. Just today i found at ebay.it a PCI Diamond Viper 550 16mb for 30€ +shipping that was not on main site. Also there are some STB V3 2000 USA located that go for under 30€+shipping. And a guy in Hungary is also selling couple of V3 for 44€. From what i also observed most of the cheap vintage PC parts can be found in eastern europ (mostlly Russia, Hungary, Poland) and Italy, France and also UK.

Reply 315 of 621, by SpectriaForce

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Blitz_25 wrote on 2021-12-20, 13:58:

As some have mentioned there's still some good somwhat cheap old PC parts to be found on Ebay. What i noticed though not all that is on sale on ebay can be found on their main site but you need to scout the localized ebay sites(.de, .it, .fr...) as well. Just today i found at ebay.it a PCI Diamond Viper 550 16mb for 30€ +shipping that was not on main site. Also there are some STB V3 2000 USA located that go for under 30€+shipping. And a guy in Hungary is also selling couple of V3 for 44€. From what i also observed most of the cheap vintage PC parts can be found in eastern europ (mostlly Russia, Hungary, Poland) and Italy, France and also UK.

Top tip: when I really want something and it's listed only on ebay.de advertised by someone who only ships within Germany, I ask the seller in German to ship to my country and usually the seller agrees. That way I can buy the item which I want and usually also save on the purchase price compared to listings from sellers who advertise with international shipping. Communicating in the seller's native language can really help with gaining trust.

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Reply 316 of 621, by Thermalwrong

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Just found one that really stands out - this used MSI 6905 slotket sold for £90? https://www.ebay.com/itm/224777861175
I think I got 3x of these NIB a few years back from a seller in germany, for around £25?
I hope that's covering up a generous best offer price. But each time an item like this sells for what looks like the high price, the next one gets listed up for around the same. Like trying to get a 3DFX card these days, those are all generally £100+ now. I think it would be kind of funny if slot1 boards shot up in value, I have got lots of them for basically scrap prices in the last couple of years.
I think that some of this is just general market craziness - the prices for all hobby things have gone up somewhat lately maybe due to lockdowns or youtube videos drawing interest.

On the one hand, this can be good because people are seeing that these old items still have value - they're more expensive sure. I haven't seen any scrap lots with interesting things, sell cheaply in quite a while. Some of that is because there's surely little scrap of ~25 year old computers left at this point. But it also means that less of this stuff is getting melted down for gold recovery.

Reply 317 of 621, by BitWrangler

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It doesn't seem to me really that the MS6905 is all that super good, it's just one of the more identifiable ones. ... particularly I guess now google just ignores quotes when it feels like and if you search for "super socket 370 CPU card" or something like many of the others are named, it could just pull you refs to superman, supergirl, every other super, a dozen synonyms for socket and card, latest CPUs, and every phone number with 370 in.

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