10 Steps To A Successful Garage Sale

Garage sales are a great way to make some extra money, and they are a great activity for kids during the summer break. With the proper amount of planning, you can have an easy, stress free garage sale where you make a profit.

If you follow these tips, it will be easy to manage your own garage sale.

Get With Friends 

One of the easiest things that you can do to help ensure that you have a successful garage sale is to get with some of your friends. You can ask them to contribute items to the sale, or you can ask for their help with getting everything ready. If you offer to split the profits, your friends will be more likely to help out. In general, larger garage sales attract more people, so enlist your neighbors’ help.

Place An Ad 

About a week before your garage sale, you might want to place an ad in the local paper, especially if you are having a large garage sale. This is not necessary, but if you do this, more people will know about your sale, which will hopefully lead to increased sales.

Organize Your Things 

Now that your ad has been placed, it is time to organize your things. You want to start pulling out everything that you plan on selling. If you can clean it, you want to do so. You also want to test the items to make sure that they work, and you should be prepared to offer a much lower price if they do not work. Once everything has been pulled aside and dusted off, it is time to price everything. You can easily find tags or stickers at a local store that will help make the prices more visible. You want to price everything, and you want to be prepared to lower those prices when people start to haggle.

Make Some Signs 

Two or three days before your garage sale, you want to make a few signs. These signs should include your address (or the address of the garage sale) and the date and time of the garage sale. You want to place these signs where a lot of people will see them. You also want to make sure that you can place the signs in certain areas. Some cities have regulations governing signage.

Get Some Cash 

The day before the sale, you want to go to the bank and get some cash. You want to make sure that you have a number of small and large bills on hand for change. Very few people are going to write you a check, and all things considered, cash is preferable.

Get Some Tables 

If you do not have some tables already, you want to borrow some from your friends. All of your small and medium items should be displayed on tables. This makes it easier for your customers to see the items, and it looks nicer.

Get Up Early 

As a rule, garage sales start early. This means that the bargain hunters are out at the crack of dawn. You want to be set up and waiting before your scheduled start time to make sure that you catch all of the prospective shoppers. If you are not available early, don’t be surprised if someone rings your doorbell at 6 a.m.

Let Them Test Things 

It’s always a good idea to have batteries and an extension cord on hand so that people can make sure that your electronic items work. No one wants to buy something only to find out later that it does not work.

Stay Late 

You should also be prepared to stay late to accommodate any stragglers. This is an especially good idea if it’s your last day, and you still have a number of items left for sale.

Everything Else 

If you still have items left over after your garage sale, you have a number of options. First, you can consider donating the items to a local shelter or thrift store. You can also list the items on Craigslist or Ebay.

By following these easy tips, you will be well prepared for your garage sale.

Is there anything that you would add to this list?


10 Steps To A Successful Garage Sale — 14 Comments

  1. Good tips! What is up with people(not gonna name any names) coming to garage sales way too early? I had a couple and we said it started at 8 am and there were a bunch of people outside at 7 am haha! We were still setting up and they were haggling prices and negotiating us down on 50 cent items..

  2. I research the web for similar products to get a rough idea of prices, especially if I have old items, like my father’s vinyl collection, and not the first idea about pricing it. I also always try to fix things so they work, sometimes the fix is really easy, grease a rusty part, clean a plug… and you can get a higher price.

  3. Good post Dominique. We have had a few garage sales and always ask how they found our sale. Even with news paper and Craigslist ads most people say – “your signs”. We make them bright, large, and easy to read. We place them as many of them as we can, following our local regulations. We also specify no “early birds” and will rarely negotiate with someone before our advertised start time.

  4. Great list. The bigger the sale is,the more people will come. From the last one we participated in – the biggest thing I learned is have stuff out. If it’s just in a box, or buried under other stuff, no one will look at it/find it.

  5. The one time we had a garage sale we advertised on Craigslist and it worked decent for us. We didn’t optimize our sale though. We were moving and trying to make a quick Buck before we took the rest of our old stuff to goodwill.

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