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  • Writer's pictureDaria Danila

The Price of Reselling Secondhand Goods Is Receiving Tax Envelopes


The Dutch tax authority is keeping an eye on users who sell secondhand items on platforms like Vinted and Marktplaats, in an attempt to improve income tax transparency.


Landing page of Vinted © Daria Danila

In accordance with new EU legislation, (re)commerce platforms must inform national tax offices yearly of users who made more than € 2000 a year, or sold more than 30 items. This measure is an attempt to resolve the issue of people not (fully) declaring the income they make through these platforms. 


The European market for secondhand goods is booming, with Vinted being the leading platform for people to sell and purchase pre-owned items at an affordable price. 



European countries where Vinted sellers may be affected by the new legislation – the platform has over 60 million registered users world-wide (Map created with Mapchart.net)

Sellers are worried about how these new measures may affect them. Veronika (22), an international student from Slovakia, started selling clothes she no longer wore on Vinted. On the one hand, she can understand the need for such measures - she knows of people who try to make a living though selling items on ecommerce platforms. “I think it’s targeted at people who sell stuff in bulk, or who buy new things and sell them at a higher price,” she explains.


On the other hand, the extra money Veronika was making was only a bonus, not something she wanted to make a living off of. Now, she’s trying to understand how (or if) these tighter regulations will affect her: “I don't feel good about [the measures]. It’s not even like a regular job, like going to work. It’s not even like freelancing,” she says.




Mobile home pages of the most popular reselling platforms in the Netherlands (from left to right) - Vinted, Facebook Marketplace, Marktplaats


Veronika’s feelings are shared by Andreea (22), who is also an international student. While she does not sell items on these platforms, she has bought some furniture, textbooks, crafting supplies, and even her bike, off of Marktplaats. She does not think that there are many people who can make a career out of reselling items: “Transparency is great, but it’s unlikely that many people can make a lot out of selling second hand stuff.’ 


“I think it’s unfair”


Andreea is particularly bothered by how these measures will impact people’s willingness to pass on their items so they can have another life: “You sell something for environmental reasons, you’ll get an extra check. I think it’s unfair,” she thinks.


She thinks students may also be negatively impacted. It is a common practice for them to sell furniture and other large items. Andreea thinks that the measures will dissuade students from using these platforms, which offer safe payment options, and will make them turn to unofficial resell groups: “People wouldn’t want to risk it, getting taxed for the money they make from selling their bed.”


“The 30 items is the scary line”


Both Andreea and Veronika think that the € 2000 threshold would be difficult to reach, but they are worried about the 30 items landmark, which can make the tax authorities take a second look at users’ profiles: “I think it can hit you fast. If you buy just a few pieces a month for quite cheap, it can add up. The 30 items I think is the scary line,” explains Veronika. 


According to broadcaster NOS, the Dutch tax offices received last year’s figures on Wednesday, January 24. These numbers will be checked against each sellers’ usual income tax declaration. In the cases where the numbers do not match, further investigations will follow.

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