Planning a garage sale seems so simple, but in reality, you may not realize exactly how much work goes into holding one. And after you’ve gone to so much trouble preparing for the sale, you want to be sure it’s worth the time and effort you put into it. Follow these five tips, and we guarantee your garage sale will not only be a success, but will also be a lot less stressful to organize than you thought possible.
Set a Date
If you’re considering a garage sale, you’ve probably stumbled across items in your home that need to go. Before you go any further collecting items, you need to set a date. Establishing the date of your sale will set a timeline so you can plan and prepare in a more proactive manner.
Gather and Price Items
Once the date has been set, it’s time to really dig in and start gathering items you want to get rid of. Go through the basement, the attic, your kids’ closets—anywhere items may be hiding that you are ready to part with. It’s unlikely you’ll want to host a garage sale every month, so take this opportunity to thoroughly clean your home and really purge it of clutter.
Consider taking the time to price your items as you add them to the garage sale pile. Pricing items can become a daunting task, especially when you’re looking at a giant pile of stuff. Take a few moments to really consider the item and make sure you mark it with a fair price, but don’t undersell yourself—if a customer doesn’t like your price, they’ll try to haggle. If you err on the side of a higher price, you may be more likely to end up getting a higher price for the item even after negotiations.
Advertise, Advertise, Advertise!
When hosting a garage sale, advertising is essential if you really want to attract buyers to your home. Consider placing an ad in the local newspaper, then take to the internet and post an ad on Craigslist, share the event on Facebook, tweet about it—you want to make sure news of your sale is spread near and far to ensure a good showing of customers, which in turn means better sales and more money for you.
Display Items Well
Throwing everything out on the lawn just isn’t going to cut it—make sure you lay out your items in a way that is attractive and shows each one in its best light. Set up tables to display items, and lay down tarps if you must place anything on the ground. Hang clothes on a rolling rack, plug electronics into a surge protector so customers can easily see that they work, group like items together—doing so allows customers to easily identify the tables and items they want to check out, ensuring they won’t miss anything or pass up any deals they otherwise would have purchased.
Create a Welcoming Environment
Make sure that you welcome and acknowledge every customer who stops by your garage sale—people are more likely to buy when they’re dealing with a friendly and welcoming host. Don’t be pushy, but continue to interact with your customers as they shop—compliment them on their cute purse, tell them how adorable their kids are—make a connection. Be prepared to haggle, don’t settle for a price you’re not comfortable with, and keep a smile on your face—it’s so much easier doing business with someone who’s nice.