When Elkhart resident Brad Warlick found himself without a job and on unemployment for the first time in 35 years, he decided to try and bring in a few extra dollars by putting his skills as a handyman to use on the Internet.
The strategy worked, and Warlick, whose online handle is "Broke Brad," is getting by in part by refurbishing items and selling them on eBay and Craigslist.
Warlick told South Bend TV station WSBT that he had recently found new homes for an old paddleboat and skis and made a tidy profit by fixing up an Indiana University glass souvenir that he bought for $20 and eventually sold on eBay for $350.
He scours flea markets and Goodwill stores for items that he can repair or restore. "There's a market for anything," he said.
Warlick said he and his family have had to cut some corners with the recession, but that the online sales have helped them through this rough spell. "It hasn't been a terrible hardship," he said. "We saw this coming a couple of years ago with my job. With the RV industry, it just doesn't last forever."
Asked by CNBC's Melissa Francis in an interview this week whether he's considered moving to find a new job, Warlick said he hasn't even thought about leaving Elkhart.
"We own the property we live on now, it was actually my great-grandparents' property," he said. "We like the area and we're here to stay. The RV and the auto industry will come back. Maybe not as strong as it was years ago, but it will always be there. I'll just do whatever I got to do to fit into that plan."