As you wander through the province of Cyrodiil in "The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion," you'll accumulate a lot of items, from weapons and armor to gems, goblets and heads of lettuce. Although some of your loot will be useful, a lot of it takes up space, especially if you don't have a home to store it in. Merchants can help you convert your unwanted goods into cold hard cash.
Finding a Merchant
To sell your goods, you'll need the services of a merchant. Whole neighborhoods of merchants can be found in major cities like Anvil or the Imperial City, while smaller settlements usually only have a small number. Inns also function as merchants, although they have a limited amount of gold to buy with.
To sell items to a merchant, speak to him or her. One of your dialogue options will ask to buy or trade items. Select this option. An inventory screen will appear, showing the merchant's inventory. Toggle to your own inventory to display your items and select what you want to sell. A window will appear asking you to confirm that you wish to sell the item for the stated price.
Value and Haggling
Each item has a specified value, displayed under the coin icon in your inventory. However, until you've maximized your Mercantile skill you won't be able to sell goods for this price. You'll receive only a certain percentage of the value. You can adjust this percentage by selecting the Haggle option below the inventory screen. Use the resulting slider to increase the sell value; if you raise it too much, however, the merchant won't be willing to buy your goods.
Selling Stolen Goods
If you've taken something that doesn't belong to you, respectable merchants won't buy it. Stolen items are marked in your inventory with a red hand icon. You'll have to sell these items to a fence. These shady merchants typically pay lower prices, but they ask no questions. In order to get access to a fence, you'll have to join the Thieves Guild. As you progress in rank through the guild, you'll gain access to fences with more gold and better prices.
Getting the Best Prices
The prices you'll receive for your items vary depending on several factors, including your Mercantile skill, the merchant's skill and how well-disposed the merchant feels toward you. Some merchants offer better deals than others. For instance, Sinderion, found in the West Weald Inn, offers good prices, although his gold supply is only 400. The merchants of the Dark Brotherhood also offer very favorable prices. Varel Morvayn, the proprietor of Morvayn's Peacemakers in Anvil, has 1200 gold to spend and offers good prices. Because Morvayn is an armorer, his shop is a good place to sell weapons and armor. Selling weapons and armor to other types of merchants requires the player to have reached the Journeyman level in the Mercantile skill.
Avoiding Bad Deals
Just as some merchants offer good prices for your loot, others give worse results. Inns typically offer poor rates, as do fences, although fences have other advantages. Etira Moslin in Hackdirt has a very low Disposition and therefore offers bad prices. Suurootan, a merchant in Bruma, offers slightly worse rates than other low-level merchants because of his high Mercantile skill, as does Shady Sam, a dubious Skooma vendor who lurks outside the walls of the Imperial City near the stables.