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Summer Means Garage Sale Time!

BY KIM HUGHES –

The first step is to choose dates and times for your garage sale. Most people go with Friday and Saturday mornings, but you can add Thursday or Sunday. You’ll get a larger crowd if you start early, and it’s likely to be cooler outside.

Garage sales offer a great way to declutter and downsize your house. Grab a box and go through every room. Pick up anything you don’t want or haven’t used in months and toss it in. Don’t forget closets, attics, basements, and garages as these are usually treasure troves for garage sale finds. Don’t underestimate the value of what you find either; people will buy anything from old CDs to unwanted bottles of perfume.

If you want to drive major traffic to your garage sale, fork up the money to pay for an ad in your local newspaper. Keep your ad short and pointed, and list your biggest ticket items first. The most popular garage sale items include furniture, kids’ toys, and collectibles. Don’t forget to include your address as well as the dates and times your sale will run.

It’s a great idea to utilize free social media marketing sites to get the word out in your local area.

Brightly colored poster board and a Sharpie is all you really need to make signs. Write “Garage Sale” large enough for people to see it. Include your address or an arrow pointing towards your house.

Make sure you have everything you need at least a day before the garage sale starts. You’ll need chairs to sit on, a table or other flat surface to take payments and provide change, and plenty of areas to display your goods.  Tables and large boxes are good to use for display.

Make sure you have fives, ones, and at least ten dollars in quarters.

After sorting, it’s best if you price your items individually rather than just group them into boxes with one price sign. Don’t increase your prices on the assumption that everyone likes to haggle; some will just walk away if they think items are priced too high.

Arrange your tables and put all the clothes on hangers the night before the garage sale. Map out where everything will be placed to make the morning setup as easy as possible.

Give yourself at least an hour before the garage sale starts to set everything out and put up signs. Make sure you have your change in a safe place, and find a comfortable, shaded area to sit.

People see garage sales as a sort of interactive shopping experience. They’re going to ask questions, they’re going to haggle, and they’re going to pick up everything, especially if it’s breakable. Just stay seated, shout out a friendly hello when people walk up, and let the customers come to you.

Consider taking the leftovers to PCDC or the Salvation Army and save on your taxes. If you have large items left over, like a couch or a TV set, consider selling them on Craigslist.

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