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Top 25 tips for having a great garage sale

toptipsWe all love to go to garage sales and even love to have them at our home to make extra money. Here are the top 25 tips for having a great sale

  1. Find out the laws in your area for having a garage sale. You may need to purchase a permit which usually costs only a few dollars.

  2. Go through everything in your house before the sale to make sure you have a large amount of items.

  3. Try to organize neighbors to have a sale on the same day, people love multi-family sales.

  4. Go through the pockets of all the clothes you want to sell and remove anything you find that you want to keep

  5. Wash everything before you put it out for sale, no one wants to buy anything smelly or dirty.

  6. Organize your sale by like items; too much clutter will turn people away.

  7. Have a plan for adverse weather: in some areas sales are still a go, in others you'll have no shoppers and will need to postpone (consider predetermining a rain date).

  8. Advertise your garage sale with signs, balloons, newspaper ads and flyers.

  9. Advertise your garage sale online, many times for free. Especially popular are sites like Garage Sale Finder, where shoppers can print out a map with directions to each sale. Take advantage of other online advertising venues such as craigslist.org.

  10. Price everything so you don’t leave customers guessing.

  11. Make sure the price tag is large enough to be seen.

  12. Colorful stick on dots work well for pricing except on books, posters and anything you can’t peel them off of.

  13. Have a decent amount of money available to make change, this includes actual coin change and paper currency.

  14. Put pets away, even if your animals are super friendly. Many people, both adults and children, are afraid of them.

  15. Don’t hover over your customers. A quick hello is fine but no one wants to shop with someone standing over their shoulder.

  16. If you are holding your garage sale on a really hot day consider selling sodas, bottles of water or juice boxes from a cooler.

  17. Total up the order yourself. You never know when a customer might try to pull a fast one on you.

  18. Never leave sharp items on tables where small children can reach them.

  19. Never leave your money sitting on a table unattended. Consider wearing a fannypack to hold your money.

  20. Don't accept checks unless you know the person well.

  21. When making change never put the bill you were given in with your money until the customer has walked away. This will help avoid them telling you they gave you a large bill than they really did.

  22. Have plastic bags available for customers to take home their items in.

  23. Wrap anything breakable in newspaper before putting it in the bag.

  24. Consider having a small “free box” for children to sift through while their parents are shopping. Ideas for this are old kids meal toys etc.

  25. Have a plan on what to do with items that don't sell. Donate to charity, save for another sale, etc. Many charities will pick up your unsold items if you give them advance notice.