Now that the weather is decent, it’s that time of year when many people enjoy looking for treasures! Why not take advantage and SELL SOME OF YOUR STUFF!!! My last two yard sales netted me over $500 (and my kids over $100 each) so it was worth the time we put in…
Before you just throw everything onto a table in your driveway, there is some prep work that you should consider!
1. Pick a good day(s) and time. This all depends upon where you live. I think Saturday mornings are the best times for sales. As far as the time of day and length to run your sale – that is really personal preference.
2. Advertise your yard sale time/place: Use social media to your advantage! Post an announcement on your personal Facebook page, Twitter, or Instagram!! Ask your friends and family to share as well. Also, Facebook now has yard sale ‘group sites’- many for each town where you can post your events. Craigslist allows a free posting as well. Many local newspapers also allow free listings for local tag sales so get the word out along many outlets!
3. Clearly Direct Traffic to your Sale. Two days before, make sure you place signs helping shoppers find your sale. It is best to start close to major intersections close to your home, followed by additional signs (with arrows) directing them to your home.
4. Organize your items for display. If everything is thrown onto a table or things are dirty, most people will perceive your items as “junk” and may not even take the time to look through your goods. Just taking the extra time to have several tables and items split out by category (household goods, tools, toys, books) can yield you more money!
Be sure you price your items. Start this process early in the planning stages. Don’t wait until the night before or the day of to get started.
5. Make sure your items are clean. As you set your items out for your sale, take a minute to make sure that everything is clean. If your clothes or toys are dirty or your picture frame is coated in dust, it can really turn off potential buyers.
6. Launder and fold/hang clothing items. If you are going to sell clothes, you will want to spend time getting these items ready. I actually launder everything before I sell it. This helps me find those hidden stains that seem to appear after time. Think about it— Would you really want to purchase a dress that has a stain on it? Probably not! Sort clothes by season and according to size. This makes it very easy for your buyers find what they are looking for. I also HIGHLY recommend hanging outfits. Either buy a rack or use a study clothes line and string across your front porch if you have one!
7. Clearly price all of your goods. It’s a turn off to me when I go to a tag sale or an antique store and nothing is tagged. People like to know what you are asking. If there are some items you are open to negotiating, keep those on a “make me an offer” or put a sticker with MMAO! If you are not sure what to price things, you can go and check out Ebay or Craigslist so that you can be sure you are asking a fair price for your items. Just be sure you don’t under price your stuff! People at tag sales will usually try to get you down, especially near the end. Know what you want and go from there.
8. Make sure you have plenty of change available (and only take cash). I get $100 in change before I start. I start out with $20 in change in my box at a time. Make sure you have $1’s, $5’s, $10’s and regularly coin change! If you are selling items at .75/.50 you will need quarters!! Wearing a carpenters apron helps if you are walking around a lot. Accept only cash! I’d also recommend you accept nothing larger than $20 bills. If you are selling a large ticket item, you can ask the purchaser to please go and get $20 bills. You would hate to get counterfeit bills given to you and then you’ll be out your cash — and your item!
9. Offer 50% off of “Goodie Boxes” Toward the End of the Sale. If time is drawing close to ending your sale and you have items to move, you can offer 50% off of all marked prices. People that show up at the end are those that are probably expecting that and will haggle anyway.
10. Price Items to Sell and Be Willing to Negotiate Those Prices. If you really want to sell your items, make sure that you remove emotion. If you are attached to a baby blanket, you will think it is worth more than it really is.
When the sale is over decide if you want to have another run at this. You can take the remaining items and put them up on the Facebook community yard sale sites, Ebay, Craigslist OR you can gift your treasures to Goodwill or another local charity so that others are blessed by your giving them.
LASTLY, tally up what you made and make those dollars count! Deposit them into your growing Emergency Fund (if you have NOT yet saved $1000) and if you have apply those dollars towards your debt snowball.