When spring rolls around, we often get busy with our spring cleaning. While we’re tidying and polishing up the house, we frequently find items that are just taking up space. Now that the weather is warming up, having a garage sale can help us get rid of clutter and make some extra money.
Garage sales sound great in theory, but in practice they don’t always go so well. If they’re not carefully conceived, they can be little more than a waste of a perfectly good weekend. But with some thought and planning, a spring garage sale can be a great success.
Here are some tips to help you make the most out of your sale.
Choose a good weekend for your sale. If there’s a big springtime event held in your town, the weekend that it falls on might be a good choice. Try to avoid weekends when nearby localities have special events, however, because more people will be out of town.
Consider recruiting neighbors to participate and make it a multi-family garage sale. You might need to find somewhere else to have it if you don’t have the room, but large garage sales attract more customers.
Keep the kids occupied. You could take them to the sitter, but if you’re willing to let them participate it will be a wonderful learning opportunity. Have them mind a table filled with items that they want to sell, or let them set up a lemonade stand. They’ll learn about negotiating and handling money.
Advertise. Put an ad in the classified section of the paper, hang up fliers around town and post the sale on local websites and message boards. Some people might stop by while passing through, but you’ll get more customers if you get the word out ahead of time.
Put up signs. Some garage sale fanatics will pass them and decide to follow them. And those who read about your sale in the paper could benefit from the directions.
Make sure the merchandise looks as good as possible. Nobody wants to buy stuff that’s dusty or wrinkled. So clean up those old home furnishings, and wash and hang the clothes.
Set prices wisely. While pricing items too high will result in sluggish sales, pricing them too low will minimize your profits. Price things reasonably, but leave a little room for negotiation. Remember, you can always come down on a price you’ve set, but you can’t easily raise it.
Keep all of the supplies you’ll need close at hand. These include a cash box, small bills, change, a calculator, pen and pencil, bags, boxes and newspapers. It’s also a good idea to buy a counterfeit detection pen to protect yourself from bogus bills.
Spring is the beginning of a new garage sale season, and bargain hunters are often eager to get back in the swing of things. With a little forethought, it’s not difficult to have a successful sale this time of year.