Garage Sale Advice
Bruce himself furnished his farmhouse for under $5,000 with finds from garage sales, and says he has picked up some important tips over the years when it comes to hosting a successful sale. Here are some of his suggestions:
- Price items to sell.
- Make sure you post garage sale signs and have your address clearly marked.
- Don't be crabby. "Who wants to go into somebody's yard and meet someone who is not happy to see you?" Bruce says.
- Donate leftover items to charity.
- Make creative and funny signs that draw attention to your garage sale. Peter says that a sign stating "Naked Garage Sale!" or "Mom and Dad are away, liquidating everything!" are sure ways to get people to swing by your sale.
- Hold "blue light specials" every hour to move merchandise.
- Use large tables to lay stuff out.
- Keep similar things together—books on one table, clothing on another.
- Have a plugged-in electrical cord handy so people can test anything that is electrical.
- Don't lie about stuff you are selling—if it doesn't work, don't sell it.
- Have $50 worth of singles on hand and keep money in a fanny pack around your waist so that you don't lose it.
"I hand them a bag first and I say, 'We are here to bless your day, we want you to take whatever you need to take. If you would like to make a donation to us we would be more than happy to receive it, but if you can't, we still want you to take it,'" she says.
- Go early, when the garage sales first open.
- If you like something a lot, walk past it as if you aren't interested, then nonchalantly inquire about its price.
- Be polite and don't be afraid to barter.
Meredith says she often finds wonderful things at garage sales and thinks that garage saling is a great hobby. "I think of garage saling as being a recycling effort," she says. "If there is a treasure and I don't buy it, it will end up in a landfill."