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Bruce Littlefield, author of Garage Sale America, says garage sales are a great voyeuristic adventure for the shopper. "I mean, where else can you actually be invited to someone's home or yard and be asked to paw through their stuff, then pass judgment on it or buy it? It's just an anomaly!" he says.

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.
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