Did you just do some spring cleaning? Do you plan on moving in the near future? Or, did you finally organize your garage or basement? These are just a few great reasons to have a yard or garage sale, and in today’s uncertain economy, it’s a good way to make some extra cash. However, the success of your garage sales depends on how well you plan - from start to finish.
The best way to start getting ready for your garage sale is to create a map of the area you will be using. This can just be a quick and simple sketch on paper. But, you are going to want to include the layout of the yard, your porch, the big tree in the center of the yard, your mailbox, etc. Once you have drawn up your map, you will want to think about the flow of customers through your sale. Ask yourself a few simple questions, like…Where are the customers going to park? Can people see my sale as they drive through the neighborhood? The answer will give you some good ideas about where your sale will start and finish and get you ready to decide where your merchandise and cashier should go.
Next, you’ll want to think about organizing your merchandise for the sale. Try creating 5 or 6 major categories, depending on what you have for sale. Clothing, furniture, books and knick knacks are all good examples of categories you would typically find at a garage sale. Once you have your categories created’ you’ll want to place them on your garage sale map, so you know where everything will go. Think about what you would want people to see first when they arrive at the sale. Then, create some simple signs that you can place with each category.
The next step - and one of the biggest ones - is deciding on what price you want to charge for each item. You may want to price some items by category (everything on a certain table is $1, etc.) and some items you will want to price individually. Whatever the case, it’s important to make sure all your prices are clearly marked and easy to read. If they are not and you are with another customer, you may lose a sale because someone doesn’t want to wait around to ask about pricing on a particular item. Before you actually start putting your items out for your sale you will want to make sure the area you are having the sale is presentable. If the sale will take place in your driveway or your front yard you should be sure to cut the grass, rake the leaves, clean up any clutter, etc.
Lastly, you will need to make sure that you have customers at your garage sale. You won’t sell many items if you don’t have customers! The best way to get customers to your sale is to advertise. You may want to place an ad on the internet and there are several sites that will allow you to post free listings that will make it easy for the savvy garage sailor to find you and you most certainly will want to place signs around your neighborhood. When it comes to posting signs, be sure to find out the rules in your community. Your neighborhood HOA and Local Township will likely have some rules about where you can place signs. You will want to post your signs at least one week prior to your sale, so people have plenty of time to see them before your sale. Make sure that the date of your sale is big and bold and easy to read.
Once your sale is over you may have some items left. A great way to help those less fortunate is to donate your unsold items.
Of course, now that you have de-cluttered your home and earned a few extra bucks by holding you sale, you may need some new items for your place. You might consider looking for a garage sale in your area!