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Sunday, May 13, 2012

Tips and Tricks for a Successful Garage Sale

I think my business endeavors began with hosting garage sales in my front yard and selling my family's belongings without their permission when I was six.  With my 20+ years of experience I have some advice to host your own successful garage sale. 

1. List your garage sale on Craigslist and other free online sites (facebook).  If possible, include pictures of your items and list some hot ticket items like furniture or collectibles.  Your local newspaper charges so consider whether it's worth the investment. 
2.  Make plenty of signs and post with directional arrows to your house coming from all major streets.  Make sure to post your address and time of sale in LARGE writing so cars driving by can easily identify your information. 
3.  Mark your house with balloons to draw attention during your sale. 

  • Clothing- Make sure clothing is washed and preferably hung.  You will receive higher dollar if they don't have to dig through a pile.  Organize clothing by size or season for easy shopping. 
  • Furniture- Place furniture or other hot ticket items closest to the road for those who drive by to see if they'd like to stop by. 
  • Organize items how you might find them in a store, like outdoor items in one section, etc. 
  • Rent or borrow tables for easy shopping and merchandising. 
  • Make sure everything is labeled.  This helps buyers and you when you get a rush of customers. 
Optional Tips:
1. Accept credit cards- you can apply for Intuit or Square to process credit cards on your smart phone. I use mine at the Farmer's Market and I feel like people have no excuse and may purchase more. 
2. Offer delivery with a fee- if you have to take the item to the dump you might as well deliver it to a good home. 
3. Be ready 30 minutes or more to your advertised start time.  People try to be the first customers there and will begin shopping whether you are set-up or not. 
4.  Feel free to sell cold beverages or snacks.  Hardcore garage sellers need to eat and drink too.  This advice comes from my integrated lemonade stand when I was a kid; it worked every time. 
5. I don't allow buyers into my house for security, even if they need to use the restroom. 
6. I also don't advise holding an item for a buyer unless it's paid in full. 
7. Start your sale before 9am, this is when you will get those wanting to purchase items.  If you start at noon you may only make half of what you could have it's you decided to get your worm. 

Invite your friends over and have fun with it.  My husband and I made it into a competition to see who was the better sales person.  I'm sure I won! 


Mary Alice said...
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Danielle Benson said...
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