It’s that time of year again – time for spring cleaning! But why stop at just cleaning your house when you can also make some extra cash by having a garage sale? Here are our top tips for organizing a garage sale quickly, so you can declutter your home and earn some money.
What You'll Learn Today
- How to Get Ready for a Garage Sale Fast
- How Do You Do a Last Minute Garage Sale?
How to Get Ready for a Garage Sale Fast
Ready to have the best garage sale of your life? Here are some tips to help you organize a garage sale quickly.
What is the Best Day to Have a Garage Sale?
If you’re planning your garage sale in a major rush, you may not be able to choose which day to host your sale.
However, if you have the freedom of choice and really want to maximize your profits, pick the best day.
The most popular days for garage sales are Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays – with Saturdays taking the lead because you’ll get both casual and serious shoppers.
What Should You Sell at a Garage Sale?
The first step in holding a garage sale – and getting ready for it quickly – is figuring out what you’re going to sell. Set yourself up for success by keeping your house organized.
Have separate bins going at all times where you can toss items that you want to keep, toss, sell, or donate. Then, when you’re going through your regular house cleaning routine, you have a place to put things.
To decide whether it’s time to get rid of an item at a garage sale, ask yourself the following questions:
- Do I use the item often?
- Does it make me happy?
- Is it in good condition?
- Will I need it in the near future?
- Do I have room for it?
If you answered “no” to any of the above questions, you might want to consider putting it in the yard sale pile.
So what are some good items to sell at the yard sale? You can sell just about anything, but some of the most profitable items are:
- Vintage glassware and dishes
- Power tools and garden tools
- Books and movies
- Beauty products and skincare products
- Shoes and gently used clothing
What Should You NOT Sell at a Garage Sale?
While most of the items listed above are fair game at a garage sale, there are some that you should relegate to the donate or toss pile.
Avoid selling the following items at your garage sale (some for obvious reasons)
- Anything that’s illegal, unsafe, or recalled
- Underwear and swimsuits (yuck!)
- Big furniture items or collectibles (items that could fetch you more money if you went to a dealer or sold them online)
- Expensive, brand-name clothing
- Certain baby items, like cribs and strollers
How Do You Price Items for a Garage Sale?
There are a few ways you can price items for your garage sale.
The first is to follow the 10% rule. Never charge more than 10% of what the item would cost new – so if it cost $100, charge $10. Otherwise, you aren’t likely to sell the item. That said, you should never price an item below 25 cents.
You can also offer bulk deals. Rather than pricing everything individually, you could say, “all clothing is $1 each” or “fill a bag of clothes for $5.” This option may not get you the most money possible from each individual item, but it will let you get rid of the most items in the shortest time possible.
Of course, one final option is to not list any prices at all! Let the customer approach you to ask for a price. Many yard sale shoppers truly enjoy the “art of haggling” – and it’s a great way to get more for your items without having to manually label every single item.
Makeshift Tables for a Garage Sale
Another key element of organizing a garage sale quickly is figuring out where you’re going to do it. If you are setting up a garage sale on the fly, you probably don’t have time to hunt down or rent tables.
You don’t have to. Really, the goal here should just be to make sure your yard ale is neatly organized. Make sure you have designated sections for everything, including school supplies, clothing, books, movies, outdoor goods, sporting equipment, and so on.
These items don’t have to be on a table. You can even just lay a tarp down and arrange the items you have for sale that way.
Of course, you can always make your own makeshift tables, too. Something as simple as laying a board across two sawhorses will suffice. You could even use the trunk or tailgate of your vehicle to display items for sale!
Get creative – ultimately, it doesn’t matter how your items are displayed as long as they are relatively easy to sift through.
Keeping Track of Sales at a Garage Sale
Just because your garage sale is last minute doesn’t mean you can’t make a profit! You just need to know how to keep track of your sales.
Using a cash register garage sale app can be helpful. Not only can apps like these allow you to check out your customers and calculate payouts, but you can also track multifamily sales numbers and invite friends to join – perfect if you’re having a large community yard sale where you will need to divvy things up at the end.
Of course, wearing a fanny pack with your change and carrying around a small notepad works as an impromptu method of accounting, too! Work with what you’ve got and don’t be afraid to improvise.
Advertising a Last Minute Garage Sale
The best way to advertise a garage sale is to do so well in advance – but if you’ve just decided at the last minute to have a sale, you obviously don’t have the luxury of time on your side.
Therefore, take advantage of the time you do have to let as many people know about your garage sale as possible. Word of mouth messaging is helpful, as is advertising your sale on Craigslist, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and even Snapchat.
Of course, don’t forget to slap some flyers up around your neighborhood, either!
Here are some other helpful tips to help you advertise your garage sale, both well in advance of the date and at the very last minute:
How Do You Do a Last Minute Garage Sale?
Garage sale season is in full swing and if you’re like most people, you want to get your sale up and running as quickly as possible. By following these tips, you can minimize the amount of time it takes to organize your garage sale and have more time to focus on making money.