Being an Indian we are very well aware of our attachment with used goods and our obsession with stocking them. We are of the mentality that a certain used good should be placed away in the store room as it might come in handy at a later stage. But does it ever? Nope, it just adds to more clutter to the overall collection. Something similar has been uncovered in the latest survey report released by OLX and IMRB.

This report termed as the ‘Annual CRUST Survey 2016‘ estimates the size of the unused goods and the attitude of people towards the same in Indian market. The CRUST(Consumer Research on Used-Goods and Selling Trends) report helps under the market potential of unused good, while also developing a comprehensive understanding of the same in the country. This is key for a company like OLX, who deals in the market of unused good on the daily.

According to the report, Indian homes have a stock pile of unused goods, including utensils, clothes, books, etc. amounting to a whopping $11.7 billion in total, which is a 39 per cent increase in value as compared to previous year. The estimated value of unused good in the previous report amounted to a total of $8.4 billion.

OLX adds that this amount is so mind-boggling huge that it could easily be used to fund Government of India’s entire ‘Swachh Bharat Abhiyan’ about eight times. Commenting on the outcome of the report, Amarjit Singh Batra, CEO, OLX India, said,

The idea of a store-room, so common in India, somewhere implies that we are Ok with stocking unused items. Clutter is such an integral part of our existence that we overlook its drawbacks.

Ancient wisdom urges human beings to unclutter. It’s time to deal with the problem of clutter head on. Uncluttered minds work better, uncluttered lives are healthier, and uncluttered homes are more beautiful.

While studying the value of unused goods, OLX coined a term to represent the value locked in unused goods gathering dust in homes — ‘Brown Money’. Very much similar to Black/White money, it is a smart representation for assessing the value of unused goods in our homes. Thus, it means that Indian households have about $11.7 billion worth of Brown Money stocked in their homes.

The report further adds that the stocking of goods continues to rise, with India having a 90% stocking incidence rate, up 3% from last year. On the flipside, its also important to notice that selling of goods has also increased about 4% from last year, adding to 49%.

Commenting on the stocking and selling trends increasing this year, Batra said,

It’s interesting to see both stocking and selling figures rising. The emergence of consumer-to-consumer (C2C) online classifieds in the country has led to greater awareness about used goods.

A few years ago people didn’t actively think about unused goods and stocking but now they do. That’s the primary reason why we see stocking figures moving up. Consumerism is another reason why stocking is increasing despite selling rising.

The survey included a qualitative research followed by a quantitative study of 5,800 samples across 16 Metros, Tier 1, and Tier 2 cities in the country. The product coverage in the sample study included a multitude of products ranging from kitchen appliances, clothing, books, smartphones to sporting goods, car accessories/parts, etc.


The immense study and survey for the CRUST report sheds light on some key trends observed among the Indian populous. Let’s take a brief look at the insights offered by the same.

  • The report suggested that 37% cited the old-age excuse of ‘I’ll use it one day’, while 39% said that they’re emotionally attached to goods and ‘Don’t want to sell’. Also, South India, followed by Chandigarh and Kochi lead the other regions on stocking of goods.
  • Clothing emerged as the largest category stocked, followed by kitchen utensils and books. It also concludes that on an average each Indian household stocks about 12 clothing items, 14 kitchen utensils, 11 books, 7 kitchen appliances, 2 mobile phones and 3 watches(which I think is very true).
  • Selling unused goods online is more advantageous in comparison to selling offline or opting for exchange. It also estimates that the value of goods realized through online selling is on an average 25% higher than the one realized through offline selling.
  • Exchange has always existed as a means to unlock value of your goods(you know, Barter System!!), but people always feel that the exchange value is lower than their expectations. And this came as no surprise, but the same was revealed by the survey as well.
  • Besides this, consumers are still hesitant at buying used goods from other, because of the lack of trust and the misleading product information. The market is, however, growing at a steady pace and Mobile phones are the most bought category.

You must now be thinking that we all have an insane value of unused goods stocked away in our homes, and we’ve stumbled upon a fortune. But have you!? Does this unused good stocked in our dusty store rooms have any value as stated above? Comment your thoughts down below!

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