Are you looking to downsize or declutter in preparation for an upcoming move? If so, a garage sale may be worth considering. A garage sale is a great way to get rid of your unwanted items while making some money at the same time.
A little preparation goes a long way in pulling off a successful garage sale, so we’ve put together this list of handy tips. Reading through will help you be more prepared, reduce some headaches, and leave you satisfied at the end of the day.
Preparing for a Successful Garage Sale
Decide What to Put Out
There are two main reasons for having a garage sale; getting rid of things you don’t need anymore and selling things to make money. Garage sales are best suited for getting rid of a lot of things at one time, so this is what we’ll use as a metric for “success,” especially preceding a move.
Listing vintage, specialty, or collectable items online individually is often a better way to ensure you get the full value of an item if your goal is to make as much money as possible. A rule of thumb here is to sell online if you want to make the most money, and have a yard sale if you want your items gone as soon as possible.
Make Eye-Catching Signs
A good way to determine the size of your signs is to stand 20-30 feet away from them and see if they’re readable. This way you can make sure they’re legible from the road. Always remember your signs not only serve as providing directions for people who didn’t leave their house planning to shop, but that increased traffic leads to increased sales, and thus decreased clutter. So, make them big, and make them bright with an arrow pointing in the direction to your home. Adding balloons is another great idea to make sure they don’t go unnoticed.
Check With Your Neighbors
Many communities host yard sales at the same time, and with more traffic bringing more sales, listings marked as “multi-family” garage sales are likely to do better than those done completely on your own. Check online groups like nextdoor or facebook to see if any others are planned in your area. If you find any, pick the date of your yard sale so they coincide with others’.
The most important part of a successful yard sale is simply getting the word out, so be sure to post on craigslist, facebook and other community forums. Be specific about the items you’re selling, include a specific address and its location on a map, and be sure to mention the date and time of the sale.
Make Sure you Have Change
Nothing’s more frustrating having a buyer ready with cash in hand, but not being able to make proper change, so go to the bank in advance if you need to.
Price in Advance
Your items will sell faster when people know what you’re asking for them, so start early in placing price stickers on your items. Taking your time to mark clothes, dishes, and toys individually instead of throwing them into a bin with similarly valued items means you can get a fairer price. It also reduces confusion in the price you expect for each item.
You may be more successful marking larger items like furniture, or more valuable things like electronics as “make an offer.” Always keep in mind people will want to haggle anyway, so price your items accordingly. If you’re unsure the value of an item, checking online is a good idea, but since your goal is to downsize, it’s sometimes better to see what people are willing to pay and then determining if you’ll accept their offers on a case by case basis.
Always see if your friends or family members are interested in helping at your yard sale. A successful sale usually takes a minimum of two people: someone to stand by the cash box at all times, and another to interact with guests to answer any questions they have. Having help also means you can take time to prepare meals or use the restroom without leaving your items unattended.
Tips for a Successful Garage Sale
Keep Electronics Near a Plug
People are much more likely to buy electronic equipment and small appliances if they know they’re in full working order, so keep a power strip nearby and be ready to turn them on if you notice someone taking interest in them
Keep Better Items at the End of Your Driveway
Lots of times people drive by yard sales to decide if it’s worth their time to park and look around. Keeping notable and in demand items, like furniture or interesting pieces of décor in highly visible locations increases the likelihood people will stop by and ultimately buy your items. A “free” section also visible from the road is also a great idea.
Reduce Prices Throughout the Day.
If your goal really is to get rid of unwanted or unused items, don’t be afraid to reduce prices throughout the day. Having a sign ready that says 50% off in the final hours of your garage sale goes a long way in clearing things out and getting more people to stop by.
Able Moving Has You in Mind
After following these tips, you can put the extra cash you’ve made from your successful yard sale towards your moving budget. You’ll also have saved on the cost of storage and the loading, transporting, and unloading of items you don’t use in the first place! We eagerly await hearing from you and making sure your upcoming move is a successful one, so contact us today!