Friday, April 20, 2012

Garage Sale Day

When the stickers and Sharpies make an appearance, you know what it must be time for...annual spring garage sales!

Our neighborhood (and the surrounding subdivisions) has their spring garage sale on this weekend every year. It seems to be the unofficial kickoff weekend to the garage sale season here in central Indiana!

I have had some very successful garage sales here, and today was no exception. I barely had time to drink my coffee! We had a steady stream of customers, and sales were brisk! Yea!

I thought I'd share a few garage sale tips, in case you were thinking of having one this season, too.

For starters, I always advertise my sales on Craigslist about a day or two before the actual day. It helps to list some major items, and provide photos as well.  I put this photo on my listing, and I had a woman here at 8am to look at my Stampin' Up goodies. That is the power of advertising!

Give some thought to how you display items. Some folks like to look at tables, racks, or shelves, while others like to root around for buried treasure at the bottom of a basket. Put your big ticket items on prominent display, and save the baskets and boxes for small ticket items. I like to arrange my tables and racks in a welcoming U shape.

Invest in some various sizes of lunch bags. These are great for pricing small items like jewelry or crafts.

Make a child's day by offering a hodgepodge of free items in a box at their eye level. It's a nice way to make moms and dads and grandparents happy, too!

Here are a few tips on preparing for your sale:

*Clean everything. If it is dirty or in total disrepair, it probably will not sell. Add a button, sew a seam, and make it neat and presentable.

*Price everything before the sale if at all possible. Trust me on this. You can tell folks to make you an offer, but they won't. They will, however, make offers on items that are marked. Marked items sell so much faster!

*Keep some stickers and Sharpies handy for price changes.

*The day before the sale, get some change at the bank. I usually get about 40 to 50 dollars, broken down into a roll of quarters, 20 one dollar bills, and a few fives.

*Price it fair, and price it to move. Be prepared to mark some items down for hagglers. Ask yourself if it's worth it to save it, or is it worth it to get it out of your house.

*Wondering if an item will sell? Put it out there and see! I'm always amazed at the things I sell. Today, I sold two old lamp shades, drawer pulls from some old dressers, some old bed linens and tablecloths. You never can tell what some folks will buy!

On the day of the sale, remember these tips:

*Keep your money on your person at all times. No cash boxes. I prefer a cross body handbag for this purpose, and the money is never out of sight.

*If your sale is in your garage or front lawn, then lock your front door and all other doors to your home.

*Never let a stranger into your home for any reason. Always recommend the nearest public restrooms, gas stations, etc.

*Never leave your sale unattended.

*Keep your cell phone and house phone handy.

*Provide bags and boxes, if possible.

Some things that sold well today:

Mens suits
Children's Clothing
Ink pads, stamp sets, and craft items
Children's Books
Sporting equipment
Housewares (blinds, shades, kitchen items, and decorative items)

And here's my most important tip:


Greet every customer. Talk to their kids. Chat with them about their awesome finds. Don't hide behind a table with your arms crossed and a scowl on your face. Walk around, smile, and spread a little joy!

That's good advice for any day of the week!

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