If you’re looking to get rid of clutter and earn some cash, a yard sale or garage sale may be the answer. If you already have boxes of unwanted items and are willing to spend the time sorting, pricing, and organizing a yard sale, here are some tips to make your yard sale as successful as possible.
Advertise. List your yard sale in your local newspapers and online. List in the “garage & moving sales” section of CraigsList.com, and conduct an Internet search for “yard sales” to see which other websites let you list your yard sale online for free. Also use email, Facebook, and Twitter to share your yard sale date with friends and family.
Create consistent signage. The best yard sale signs include at least the following information: the words “yard sale,” the date, times, location and an arrow. Use large, legible lettering. Print all of your signs on the same color paper, so drivers can follow the signs from a distance. Place signage at major intersections a few days before the sale, and remember to take them down after the sale ends.
Balance between pricing to haggle and pricing to move. Most people planning yard sales want both to get rid of old stuff and to earn money. Overall, it’s better to sell an item for a small amount of money than to have to give it away for free later. Use a simple pricing structure, with room for buyers to bid lower. Consider labeling everything in dollar amounts and not charging below one dollar for anything. This way you only have to stock up on dollar bills, not lots of coins. Combine little items into plastic bags and charge a dollar for the whole bag. Try using brown paper lunch bags to create one-dollar “mystery bags” full of small items to sell to kids. Also think about having a five-dollar shopping bag sale for the last hour of your yard sale.
Consider selling refreshments. A good way to earn some extra cash at a yard sale is to sell yummy treats and cold drinks. They’re hard to resist for people who’ve spent all morning yard-saling.
Determine what you will do with the remaining items. Too often, boxes of old yard sale items are lugged back into the house. Once you determine you don’t want an item, let it go. If it doesn’t sell at the yard sale, donate it to a thrift shop or other organization. Don’t bring that clutter back in!