Monday, April 11, 2011

How to Have a Successful Yard Sale

I mentioned last week that I was having a yard sale with my SIL this weekend and boy was it a success!  Both of us walked away with a TON less junk stuff than we showed up with and we each walked away around $400 richer.  All in all it was a pretty good Saturday if I do say so myself!

And while I definitely don't consider myself an expert by any means, both of my yard sale experiences have been pretty good so I thought I would pass on the things I've learned along the way!

Advertise.  We've put ads in the paper and on Craigslist and put out signs.  If you put out signs, make sure they're brightly colored and easy to see.

Put out anything and everything.  Seriously, you'll be amazed at what other people will buy at yard sales.  I've sold everything from purses and jewelry to barware and kitchen gadgets to clothing to ancient video game systems to artwork to nick-knacks and probably anything else you could ever think of.  The old saying that "One man's trash is another man's treasure" is most definitely true!

Jewelry sells like hot cakes.  Not sure why, but it doesn't matter what it is, it will most definitely sell so don't under price yourself with this one.

Everything is negotiable.  I actually never price anything.  I always have an idea in my head about what I would like to get for each item, but for me pricing seems to be a big waste of my time because in m y experience haggling is a given at yard sales.  I much prefer to have people ask me how much something is for a few different reasons.  (1) It allows me to gauge their reaction to the price so I can immediately readjust it if I'm way out there with my original price; (2) I enjoy interacting with the customers (you can meet some really interesting people at garage sales); (3) It gives me a better idea of what items are eliciting the most interest.

Don't be afraid to say no.  While everything is negotiable, you should also never be afraid to tell someone no to a price that they throw out.  While most people are pretty reasonable, there will always be that one person who is just plain ridiculous and wants to try to whittle you down even more on a price that is already way too good to be true.  You'll know this person for sure when you encounter them because they will almost certainly leave you feeling annoyed with them.  It's totally okay to throw something at this person just to get them to leave tell this person no.

Be ready early.  Like 6:30 or 7 early.  Seriously.  Experienced yard salers are hardcore and they start early.  Both of the yard sales I've done had customers at them long before our originally posted start time.  But you never want to lose a sale, so don't turn them away even if you're not quite ready for them!

If you're doing a group sale have different sections for each seller.  This makes it easier to track who has sold what and to whom money is owed if someone buys items from more than one seller.

Plan to be out there a little longer than your posted end time.  This, too, has happened at each of my yard sales.  The end time comes around and there is still a steady stream of customers flowing through so we end up staying longer than we anticipated because we want to get rid of more stuff.

Those are my tips.  Anyone else out there a yard sale guru?  What are your tips and tricks to getting rid of your junk and getting the most money out of it?

Happy Monday, everyone!



LG said...

Great tips! I can't wait to have one!

Shannon Dew said...

Thanks! My mom & I are having a yard sale soon so I'll use your tips! I'm hoping kps baby stuff sells fast!

Miss Chelsea said...

I have a disagreement!! I love to garage sale, but I will not ask/leave if things aren't priced... even though people haggle, it's still nice as a shopper to get an IDEA of what they're expecting. There might be 30 things I have my eye on and I sure as heck am not gonna stand there and ask you every two seconds heheh