Hosting a yard sale can be a great way to get cash for things you no longer need.
We used to scour the classifieds in the paper, looking for sales around the neighborhood to stop by. Today, with the apps Facebook Marketplace and Poshmark, hosting a yard sale has become tougher than ever.
Today we’ll share tips for getting people off their phones and shopping at your place instead!
Let’s make a deal!
What Is a Yard Sale?
When people move homes or simply need to clean out some space in their current one, they’ll often lay their extra things out on their lawn or driveway to sell. Passersby can stop in to look the goods over.
Some of our favorite things at yard sales include hand-knit sweaters and camping goods. It’s also an excellent way to find quality used furniture, but you have to hit the streets early to find the best deals.
What’s the Difference Between a Garage Sale and Yard Sale?
Traditionally a garage sale isn’t set up outside like a yard sale. However, people in different regions will use the words interchangeably. They also have other names throughout the country, depending on where you live. No matter what, they all offer similar household items, from clothes to furniture and everything in between.
Other events include block or community sales. Everyone in the neighborhood can team up on the same day, which increases foot traffic for everyone. Estate sales occur when someone passes away or has to downsize for a move. Their things can be purchased to help the family dispose of unwanted items while making cash to help with costs.
The Benefits of Having a Yard Sale
Hosting a secondhand sale can help give a second life to things you don’t use instead of trucking things off to a landfill. You can declutter your house, turning it into the organized home you’ve been dreaming about.
Children can even participate by going through their toys. This can be a great lesson in teaching kids to get rid of things they don’t use. Then, teach them about money management if they’ve been able to sell anything.
If you do it right, your yard sale could rake in some serious cash.
The Disadvantages of Having a Yard Sale
Hosting a sale takes a lot of work and time. You declutter your house and display your secondhand goods. Then you’ll sit in the sun all day or weekend only to sell a fraction of the stuff you wanted to get rid of. Alternatively, unpredictable weather can even roll in and ruin your hard work.
If you live in a rural area, you might have a hard time getting foot traffic. You’ll probably also have trouble getting a fair price for your quality goods at a yard sale.
With some guidance, we think anyone can overcome these challenges for a fantastic sale.
Pro Tip: Do not include these 7 Things You Can’t Sell at a Garage Sale during your preparations.
7 Tips to Have a Great Yard Sale
If you want to make some cash for decluttering your home, you have to do the leg work. Let’s cover some tips to ensure your yard sale isn’t a failure.
Spend Time Decluttering and Sorting
Trying to declutter your entire home in a day may be tempting, but the task will quickly become unsurmountable. You might try tackling one room each weekend leading up to your sale. Some people set aside a box in the garage or attic for unwanted clutter and add to it constantly. Then they go through the bin when it’s time to host an event.
Whatever your method, remember to leave yourself plenty of time. Waiting until the night, or even the week before, your event to start sorting through your belongings creates a recipe for disaster.
Be Wise About the Date
We’ve never been to a garage sale on a Tuesday, and we’d guess neither have you. They typically do best on Fridays and Saturdays. If you live in a region without many churchgoers, Sunday might also be a good day to set up shop.
Some even suggest planning your event around the first of the month, after payday. Then your neighbors might have spending money they’d like to drop at your sale.
Get the Word Out
Start advertising your sale a few days before it occurs. If you have anything special, like board games or specialty tools, mention it in your listing. Post it on social media and other classified sites like Craigslist and Nextdoor. You might even consider taking out an ad in your local paper for shoppers that like to find deals the old-fashioned way.
Be Smart About Pricing
Yard sales have become a favorite stop for bargain hunters, and you should price accordingly. Remember, your primary goal should be to ditch these things. Making money can be considered an added bonus.
If you aren’t sure what to charge for an item, start by pricing it at half of what you paid. Used clothing should be low-priced, usually $10 or less.
We recommend using a color-coded sticker system for prices. Colored stickers can be found at the dollar store. Just print out a few pricing keys to post around the sale, and you’ll be ready to open. Before you set a price, though, remember that people will want to haggle no matter what.
Offer Free Items
If you really want to declutter your house, the best way might be to give some stuff away. Set aside a box to go to Goodwill afterward and offer it for free.
You can even offer a “buy three, get one free” deal on your items to help motivate buyers. Then, if a customer just wanted to get two things, they might purchase a third and leave with four total.
Watch the Weather
Do your best to plan around the weather. If monsoons frequently occur in September in your region, pick a different month for your event. You probably won’t see many February garage sales in Minnesota or in the peak of a Texas summer. Check the upcoming weather before you commit to an event.
Have a Plan for Leftovers
You won’t sell it all, no matter how well it goes. Before you begin, plan for what you’ll do with anything that remains at the end of your event.
A couple of boxes of knickknacks and clothes should easily fit in a car for a trip to the thrift shop. If you have big-ticket items like furniture, you can try posting them online in one of the marketplaces. But if you need it to go sooner, you might be able to schedule a pickup with your local secondhand store. In some areas, this can take months, so plan.
Pro Tip: Keep in mind these 5 Things to Avoid When Thrifting for Home Decor.
Is Having a Garage Sale Worth It?
If you have time to dedicate a weekend to running a yard sale, you should certainly try one out. In the end, even if you don’t sell a single thing, you’ll have decluttered your house and spent time hanging out outside with your family.
Start setting things aside for your next sale today, and get ready to haggle!
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