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Have a Successful Yard or Garage Sale in 4 easy Steps.
Yard or Garage Sale.
It's that time again...
Where do we start?
First be sure to check the local laws about having a sale on your property. Laws can vary from State to State.
Our Garage and Yard Sales always start in the winter months. I purge all closets, drawers and storage spaces. What I mean by purge is that I hunt for items that I know we will not use or don't have a need for anymore. I label and price EVERYTHING. Tip: DO NOT PRICE ANYTHING FOR UNDER 25 CENTS. I can't stress this enough. One time I let a friend share my driveway and some of her items were marked 15 cents & 10 cents. I didn't like making change for a $20 bill for a 10 cent item! Back to the process... After sorting, and cleaning or spray painting various items I place whatever I can in boxes or large garbage bags. Unfortunately our dining room will suffer with the clutter of the boxes, bags and furniture that we want to sell in the sale. However, it's not such a long time and I have the space there, that is out of the way and not used as often in the winter. I get deep into it from Jan.-April. Towels, linens, pots, pans, doubles of anything. It all gets ready for the sale.
So much time is saved when you price each item as you prepare for the sale. People Do Not want to ask you how much an item is. They will just pass it by. On the other hand, if you see someone lingering with an item... Shout out, "That is half price now, or make me an offer." You don't want to take that thing back inside... do you?
Getting to the Bones of your Sale.
You'll see that with a little planing ahead of time, it won't be so overwhelming when your Yard/Garage Sale day is just a few days away. Have a working extension cord ready to show people that the radio works... better yet, have the radio playing all day, until it's sold. Music always makes people linger longer at a sale. If you don't believe me, go to the mall. Most stores play music to keep the customers shopping for as long as possible.
Here are the Steps I've used for Years.
1. Place your ad in the newspaper by Wednesday for a Saturday Sale. Don't bother with sales for Sunday, no one goes to yard or garage sales on Sundays. Trust me on this, when I was new at this I had a Sunday sale... only two people showed up. Be sure to put your ad in for the Friday and Saturday Classified ads. Some newspapers have a special rate just for Yard/Garage Sales. (Yard/Garage Sale junkies like to plot their hunting trips.) Make the ad short. Put three big items in the ad that you really, really want to sell. Then add a few more smaller items with a... And More, on the end of the ad. In our community we pool our money for one large ad. Not too large, just enough to bring some traffic to the sales. We each put in three big items and one lesser item... like children toys, clothes, or Plus Size clothes. Then we divide the price of the ad and each pay an equal amount of the cost.
2. Put out Signs the night before the sale. Use arrows to point the way on the sign. Make separate signs for Larger items, (couch, TV, lamp, etc.) Also put your tables out the night before the sale. On the day of your sale you can place the empty boxes under the tables as you fill the tables with your sale items and keep some bags handy for people to take their items home. While you are making the signs be sure to make a few... "ALL SALES FINAL," signs, to put in plain sight for the day of the sale. (Be courteous to your neighbors and take the signs off right after your sale is over.)
3. The day before the sale go to the bank and get $30 in five dollar bills, $50 in one dollar bills and a roll of quarters. If you have a lot of 50 cent or $1.00 items make a Dollar Box or 50 cent box. This will free up space on your tables for items above a dollar. I sometimes make $1.00 Surprise Boxes. I take some time one weekend in the winter and place a whole lot of small things in boxes. If I have the time or the used wrapping paper, I even wrap the boxes. I list what is in the box so people are not too surprised. The children and men really go for the surprise boxes. It just makes the sale a little different.
4. SALE DAY! Get up early, have some kind of breakfast even if it's a cup of coffee with a buttered roll. Next, take your stuff outside and fill those tables. Place your clothing on hangers and put them on your makeshift clothes holder, (See Photo.) Be sure you wear a Carpenter's apron. It holds pens, pencils, money, calculator, and paper nicely. One Hour before your sale is over... usually when not too many people are stopping by anymore, announce that... EVERYTHING IS HALF PRICE! This will help sell stuff that you don't want to take back inside or to Goodwill.
There you go. It's that simple. If you are not planning to have any other sales in the future be sure to take all the left over items to Goodwill right after the sale. Make a list and take a picture of everything. Then you just attach the list and photos to the receipt that they give you and you are ready for tax time.