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24 Garage Sale Tips: How to Make $1,000 at your Next Yard Sale

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24 Garage Sale Tips to Use at Your Next Sale

It’s bound to happen. You look around the house and realize it’s time to purge. The sun is shining and you are looking at your finances. A garage sale could help the bottom line. It’s also going to be a lot of work.

Want to make the most out of your next garage sale, yard sale or neighborhood sale? Well, if you’re serious you could make $1,000 with all your wares on the curb. And it’s not far fetched at all! Don’t hear about many people making a lot of money selling in front of their house? Well, maybe they haven’t read our garage sale tips yet!

If you’ve ever gone on the hunt for items at garage sales, you will notice immediately on a Saturday morning who is making money and who isn’t. Those folks who toss the items on the grass (or are still pulling items out long after the sale started) are letting cash pass by. They aren’t serious and they might make a couple of hundred bucks, if they’re lucky. They aren’t the people reading this article about garage sale tips.

On the other side, those people pulling in cash do TWO things that you will immediately see when you roll up to a sale. One they have everything available before the sale starts. You check out the items with a single look making it easy to find your treasure. And the second thing? They say good morning to everyone. They might be faking the warm, fuzzy feeling that early in the morning, but they know if they are approachable, they can convince anyone to make an offer!

Let me share my story of the last garage I helped at. It was a doozy! Three families and one wholesaler. The families showed up with roughly 100-300 pieces to sell. The wholesaler had 15 racks ful of clothing.

All of us were responsible for selling our own stuff and encouraging everyone to check out everything. In a short time of 6 hours, all of the families had made more than $500. Two even cracked 1200 thanks to a few high priced items. The wholesaler with racks of clothing? $250 bucks. She definitely needed these garage sale tips!

Grabbing coffee after the event, the discussion was about what was different about how things sold. We all had clothing. Our wares were from different parts of the house and there were plenty of kids items too. We realized that the things sold from the different families were all available for purchase and the families were talking to people as they entered the property.

Then there was the wholesaler. She brought her stuff out late into the sale and was always on the phone. People stopping by noticed her demeanor and didn’t really adjust to her approach.

My Garage sale tips aren’t just random ideas that might work. They have been used by myself and others which are tried and try. One thing that’s worthy of stressing is nobody just rolls down the street to randomly find a garage sale.

In today’s world, we have apps, listings and emails that need to be sent out to make sure you are found. It’s time to use the computer, cell phone and tablet to attract attention. Yes, occasionally a yard sign will be helpful, but your prep sale work is all about the digital realm! Our garage sale tips focus on a digitally based idea that your community probably is already set up for!

24 Tried and True Garage Sale Tips

Get Your Sale Up Online

You need to post your sale twice the week before. First on Wednesday to let people know what you have and then again on Friday. The idea is to create interest and a general location. To be safe – make another post to add your address on Friday. This will protect you and bring in buyers.

Local Marketplaces like Craigslist, Facebook marketplace and GarageSaler are perfect places to start!

On Thursday put your ad on the Garage Sale Search Engine called Post My Garage Sale. It’s a free service that outputs YOUR sale to all the websites that are local to your area. This is a great way to spread the word online as it shares with over 6 sites and ALL your garage sale sites bases will be covered.

Just Say No to Paying Garage Sale Ads

There is no need to buy garage sale ads. If you use the formula above with just three ads and the suggested days, you will have a solid showing of people. Extra paying ads are a waste of cash as highlighting your items, unless you have an estate sale or something very unique isn’t practical.

Set up the day before

Tables need to be in place, items ready to go in boxes and plenty of space for the bigger items. If you live in a space where you can’t set up physically, then get out the pen and paper and set up that way. Have the tables lined up, the items arranged with prices and any signs done. This tip on the garage sale tips list is the MOST important tip of all. You need to be organized and ready to sell.

Post physical garage sale signs

Get those signs up the night before. Preferably late and in an area you can see. Make sure the address is in BIG LETTERS! Colors like green and orange are perfect to get people to notice.

Have a goal for your garage sale

How much money are you planning to make? Instead of just wishing all the stuff will be gone, figure out a number that you’d be happy with. Frankly, if you have a goal, when someone acts interested, you have a goal and you will get the job done! It’s that why you believe you can make $1,000 at your next sale too!!!

Related: More About Money Mindsets

If You Have a Sale…They Will Come

Make sure you have enough items

If you don’t have enough to sell, you won’t have a profit. Make sure you have plenty of items that you want to sell. Garage sales are always full of items appealing to everyone. The garage sale tips won’t work unless you have enough items. If you need more stuff, ask a friend or neighbor if they want to team up for a sale at your house!

Nothing should be priced under a dollar

Nothing. Nada. Never. All items should be a dollar or more. Or there should be gatherings of items worth a dollar each. If you have quarter items, you will end up giving them away. This garage sale tip is one of the most important to remember.

Have a dollar table

People will drive across town for a deal. A dollar table of two will attract BIG attention. It’s a great way to make money too. There is always a deal at the dollar table and the more buck items you have the more you will sell overall. People will come for the deal and buy everything else too!

Big signs for pricing

Piles or tables are a great way to actually arrange items. It’s fast and efficient and all you need is on BIG sign. It’s really important to make sure your items are staged to show the signs to the street.

Arrange clothing off the grass

You want to sell your clothing? Get it off the grass. We are taught from a young age that we pick our clothes up off the floor so why do sellers place the clothing on the floor? I’ll never know, but I will tell you that clothing in a pile all messy and terrible looking will sell MORE than on the grass. People revolt seeing clothing on the floor as they hear their parents voices. Use a table, steps, porch stoops or even a rack. Never put clothing on the grass.

Think twice about allowing holds

Place a hold? No thank you! This isn’t Walmart and even so, they make you give a deposit. The real reason for never holding an item? You are there to sell, not to be holding items. If they give you cash and need to get a car, no problem. They don’t show any green? No thank you. As a garage sale tips go, this should be a no-brainer but people will still ask so be ready!

It’s Your Opportunity to Make Money

Mark the condition

I always am up front with the good, bad and ugly on items. I’ve always sold items when I honestly say I don’t know if it works because I haven’t used it in ages. A big garage tip to remember is be honest with your buyers. They know where you live and they will be back if you promise the moon and fail to deliver. It’s a few bucks, but it’s more about principle. I think that’s why people feel so attached to items they buy second hand so just tell them everything and let them decide.

Prepare for negotiations

Know your bottom line on every item. You need to have an idea what you are willing to take and how it impacts your goals for the day. It’s also important to know who you are negotiating with. Are they professional sellers or just people looking for items? You are in charge so make sure you know before they ask.

No Deals Before 10

Remember that goal you started? Well, people are going to be throwing deals at you left and right. Great! That’s what a successful garage sale looks like. However, if you open at 7am and at 7:05 a buyer comes and lowballs you an offer for a piece you could have gotten far more and you accept, think about how much you’ve just lost. You wasted your time on the sale and just made it impossible to make your goal. So, no deals before a predetermined time. Prices marked until 10am.

This is how resellers make a killing. They beat down garage sale sellers with negative talk of never being able to sell it. Creating a panic that they will be stuck with all the stuff they just hauled out to the grass. It’s untrue and trash talk. Trust me, the right buyer for the right price will come along. It might be at 10am though and you need to wait.

No bulk deals

Group collections together

People love to finish collections and will buy one of an entire collection. Which is good for them, but you won’t be able to sell the rest if it’s not all together. Sell the groups of items in collections.

A Happy End to a Sale Day is a Solid Wad of Cash

Group linens, fabrics and wrapping papers in sets

The idea behind sets is similar to collections. People will want particular items, leaving the rest on your tables virtually unsellable. Put a price on the entire group and sell it for that price. The idea behind the garage sale tips is to keep selling and you need to make sure you don’t unintentionally break something up and end up with a disappointing outcome.

Two Minute Rule

Sometimes people come to garage sales to engage with others. Yep, they are lonely and it’s a great way to explore the community. They will buy something, but also talk your ear off. That’s why you need the 2 minute rule. When people seem to be long wined, set the timer for 2 minutes and have the ringer go off. Then excuse yourself. Typically the ringer on your phone or watch should be preset so all you need to do is hit a button casually.

Sell drinks

A buck a water sounds minor, but at the last garage sale, we sold fifty bottles and made $40 in profit. This garage sale time will pad your sale even further. Serious garage sale people will grab a bottle of ice water and all you did was pull it from the freezer.

Showcase jewelry and eyewear By Your hub

Wherever you decide to stand or sit for the most part, should be where your jewelry and eyewear is located. It’s a huge draw and worthy of the mention in your ads. Watch people line up for the first pick!

Start Your Garage Sale on Time

People will arrive 30 minutes early to get bargains. So your sale needs to start on time. There are no excuses for being late, especially if the sale is right out your front door. Remember people won’t return if you aren’t ready. It’s a lost sale and frankly, that’s on you. Ask yourself why do you need garage sale tips if you aren’t going to be ready.

To grab every dollar driving down your street, have your sale up 45 minutes before you posted a start time. Use your charts or have it pre set up. Having a few things left to do is fine, but merchandise should already be on the table the minute the clock shows the start time.

And Finally….

Make sure you say good morning

If you want to build immediate trust with everyone. Say good morning to every soul that walks your direction. It’s early and everyone might not respond, but if they are interested in an item they will be comfortable enough to consider buying it or make you an offer because you made yourself available.

Have a good time

When you decide to have a sale, make a point to decide to have a good time. You never know who you might meet or what connections it could bring. Don’t just go out there to make money. Instead choose to go out there and make money while having fun.

In conclusion

Our garage sale tips are offered in hopes that you will find your sale day to be full of individuals throwing cash at you and taking away all your “junk”. Make the most out of your efforts as garage sales, yard sales and even estate sales as you can make a $1,000 a garage sale.

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