garage sale

Garage sales are a great way to get rid of unwanted and unused items, rather than taking them to your new house. The sign of a good garage sale is very little items remaining at the end of the day and more cash in your wallet. We’ve put together a list of tips to help you achieve the most out of your pre-moving garage sale.

1. Plan in advance

Don’t decide on Tuesday that you’re going to have a garage sale on Saturday. A good garage sale is organised weeks in advance. Firstly, choose the date. Weekends are good, but avoid public holidays or long weekends and check that no other community events conflict with your date. Start collecting plastic bags to hand out to buyers and make sure you clean and scrub all items you plan on selling. That includes washing your clothes. Work out where you are going to hold your garage sale and make sure the area is tidy. Don’t forget to mow the lawns, you want your home to be inviting.

2. Advertise

This is probably the most important step of all. There are three main ways to advertise – online, with posters and with flyers.

Online – there are a number of websites solely dedicated to advertising garage sales. Check out the following sites:

Posters – They might be old school but posters still work at attracting local shoppers. Put posters up in your neighbourhood, at community centres, in local shops and at major intersections near your home. Don’t forget to include your full address, time of the sale, and the date. Don’t write “today”, as it means nothing to a random passerby.

Flyers – Deliver the flyers to each residence in the street giving as much notice as possible. Consider non-english residents by having the flyer translated into alternative languages.

3. Set up shop

It might be at your house but you still need to think like a shop owner. Place clothes on hangers and hang a string up so people can flip through them. If you have hundreds of books or DVDs, arrange them so that people can easily see their titles, people don’t want to spend their weekends rummaging through boxes.

A couple of balloons on the front fence or gate is a good idea as it helps direct people to your sale.

Another great idea comes from Lifehacker. The website recommends you set up a testing area if you are selling electronics. Run an extension cord from the house if needed, place all the electronics together, and let people test them out on their own.

4. Work out payment

If you want to make money off your garage sale, and chances are you do, then it’s a good idea to place prices on all objects in advance. People like to haggle at garage sales so leave a little room for this. Be reasonable about what you can get from your second hand goods. Just because you paid $500 for something six months ago, doesn’t mean you can sell it for the same price. If you don’t know how much to charge, check out eBay or other websites for approximate amounts. Make sure you have at least $100 in change to give to customers.

Once you’ve got everything in place, all you need to do is sit back, relax and enjoy meeting new people.