Yard sales are hotter than they have ever been before. With so many people looking to trim the family budget, finding a deal at a yard or garage sale can be the answer to their needs. Plus yard sales allow sellers a way to not only make a positive impact on the environment by repurposing usable items, they provide sellers with a quick source of income.
However, there are some tricks to making a yard sale successful. While many people prefer to just stack their used goods outside and let people pick through the heaps, savvy sellers will market and stage their yard sale items to their best advantage. With that in mind, here are 10 tips for having a successful weekend yard sale.
Clean Out Closets and Cupboards
It can truly be amazing how many worthwhile yard sale items people unknowingly stash away in their closets and cupboards. Even sellers who have set specific items aside to sell should consider looking through their home one more time before the day of their yard sale.
Be Sure to Have Plenty of Change Available
If sellers position their yard sale right, they will get lots of foot traffic. That could mean lots of people with 5-, 10- and 20-dollar bills. Having change available is important, and not just dollar bills. It’s important to have change as well.
Choose the Right Time of Month and Year for a Yard Sale
The best time of year for yard sales is during cooler months (think spring and fall). Having a yard sale in 100 degree weather can be unpleasant not only for the buyer, but for the seller as well. In addition, yard sales on weekends near the middle and end of the month are more likely to attract those who have just gotten paid.
Pre-Price Yard Sale Items to Save Time
Pricing yard sale items in advance saves sellers the headache of trying to figure out how much they want for their things. Plus it gives buyers a jumping off point if they want to negotiate. Don’t be afraid to price an item a little high knowing someone may make a counter offer. And if a buyer hesitates, sellers should be ready to let them know they are open to offers.
Save Old Shopping Bags to Reuse
Here’s a great way to repurpose any bags that sellers have accumulating from local stores, whether they be plastic or paper. Make sure to have a supply on hand for shoppers who need something in which to carry away their purchases.
Big Ticket Items at Yard Sales are Okay
Some people claim that yard sales should be all about the little items and that big ticket items should be sold through other means. Big ticket items can sell just as well as the smaller pieces. In fact, some people scour yard and garage sales for old furniture pieces, bicycles and car parts.
An Item is Not Sold Until the Seller Has the Cash
Sometimes buyers want an item, but don’t have enough money with them. It’s okay to negotiate a lower price if it still seems reasonable and fair. However, don’t put the sold sign on an item or hold it aside based on someone’s word that they will return.
Market the Yard Sale Anywhere and Everywhere
The only way to get enough foot traffic to generate serious cash is through advertising. Post signs in the surrounding area that are large enough to read and have just enough information to attract customers. Pertinent information includes: Yard Sale, address, date and time. Arrows pointing in the general direction can be helpful as well. However, long lists of items available get lost in the sauce. And be sure to post early in the week before in order to allow shoppers to plan.
In addition, there are several online websites where sellers can advertise their upcoming yard sales. Sites such as YardSaleSearch.com or GarageSaleCow.com are good places to start.
Enjoy the Yard Sale
Finally, last but not least, be friendly. Remember yard sales are all about selling. Not only can this be a great social event, it’s a chance to get to know the neighbors. Plus people are more likely to buy from buyers they feel comfortable around.
Part of being comfortable is for sellers to make themselves comfortable. That may include having shade and water available if the day is particularly sunny.
Whether it’s called a yard sale or a garage sale, the idea behind the process is the same. Advertising and marketing are the key factors to the success of any sales transaction. And understanding how yard sales work can make any seller successful.