I recently stumbled across this list on Apartment Therapy for how to have a successful yard sale. My mom and I are planning to have our own sale this weekend (sheesh, I better work on pulling more stuff together!!) and so I was pumped to see what they suggested. Here are the highlights of their recommendations, along with a few suggestions made by commenters and a couple tips of my own:
Get the word out. Advertising is key. We plan to put up signs, place an ad in the paper and mention the sale on Craigslist and Garage Sale Finder. My own tip from previous experience... make sure your signs are legible! Grab some blank poster board (not the store-bought garage sale signs with a tiny box for personalization) and use a fat marker to write up the details in big, bold letters. Check out the example below. Add the date and time to this bad boy and you'd be golden!
Have your money ready. Make sure you've stocked up on ones and change. We stick to just quarters. I try not to deal with any denominations smaller than that and round up or down instead, just to make things easy. And make sure to think wisely about where to store your money. We always have ample "staff" at our sales and so can have a money box that stays in one spot, but you may want to keep it on your person or inside.
Display items wisely. Only the most seasoned shoppers are willing to dig through loads of junk to find what they're looking for, so make sure shopping is easy to do. It's time-consuming, but bring out tables and bookcases to display items on. Try to group by departments and avoid overcrowding (can't see the forest for the trees, right?!). Also try to avoid placing items on the ground if possible.
Price to sell. I don't know about you, but my goal in a garage sale generally isn't to make money, it's to get rid of stuff. The less junk in my house the better, so I price things to move. Usually, if someone offers me less, I take it. The only exceptions are large ticket items. At the end of the day the less you have to take to Goodwill (don't ever make the mistake of taking it back inside) the better!
Have bags and boxes ready to go. Make sure you have a way for people to carry their loot away easily. It may just prompt them to pick up more. Also have some room set aside for the super shoppers to hold their items while they continue to shop. You want to make this experience as easy for them as possible!
Play music. I've never done this before, but plan to this time for sure. I find it totally uncomfortable to sit at the selling table in complete silence while one or two people shop. I'm sure they find the silence unbearable too. So I'll be popping in a little crowd-pleasing music for the masses!
Do you have any tips to share? I'd love to hear them!!