Making enough money from home to replace a high-wage salary has become the new American Dream (even more so since so many of us have become accustomed to the stay-at-home life). Online resale businesses like eBay are one way to do this, but it can be done on quite a large scale in other ways. “Pallet flipping” has become a booming industry for many budding entrepreneurs like Chris Clay and Chuck Popovich, two Toledoans who share their skills with the world on A&E’s newest reality show, Extreme Unboxing.
Here’s the premise: each team purchases a pallet either directly from distributors looking to get rid of returned items, or from one of many third-party liquidation websites. Once they receive the pallet, it’s a bit like a kid tearing into their presents on Christmas morning, except there is sometimes quite a bit of money on the line.
Best friends to business partners
Popovich and Clay met while working at Staples 14 years ago and quickly became fast friends. A business partnership was formed after they realized they could make a living at it on their own. “Chris had been in retail for 15 years, and I had been in for seventeen,” says Popovich. “We’ve always had really good success doing retail, so I realized that I could do retail for myself.”
The two pallet flippers on Extreme Unboxing have a huge warehouse they’ve deemed “the bunker,” that houses all the items they resell. The show is riveting to watch because you see their monetary investment at the bottom of the screen, and, as the team unearths items from the pallet, you get to see if they’ll lose money, break-even, or turn a good profit.
At some points, it seems as if there’s not very much value and that the pallet is going to be a bust, but then they hit on something big at the end that makes it all worth it.
Like a marriage
Clay and Popovich also have an engaging dynamic to watch. While Popovich is quick to make a purchase, Clay is the more conservative teammate. Clay says, “Chuck is more apt to say ‘We’re taking this risk,’ and I’m more like ‘Let’s think about it for a second.’ It’s like a marriage.”
While some of the other teams on the show sell their flipped items at garage sales and flea markets, Clay and Popovich focus mostly on online selling. Though they do some local in-person sales as well.
The two of them are incredibly grateful to have been approached by the A&E team, and you can tell by watching the early episodes that they are stoked to be a part of it.
“It was just absolutely an amazing, incredible experience,” says Popovich. “I’m really hoping we get renewed for a second season, and it hasn’t even aired yet. Or, maybe we get a spinoff called “Popovich Pallet,” he jokes. “Just throwing that out there.”
You can see this Toledo duo work their pallet-flipping magic on Extreme Unboxing, which premiers on Tuesday, August 4 at 10pm ET on A&E. You can check out their online resale business here.