Friday, June 3, 2011

How to Guarantee Your Garage Sale is Going to be Lame

How do you guarantee your garage sale is going to be lame?

For starters, you don't start doing any prep work until the day before. That's where I am right now. Our neighborhood is having a community-wide garage sale tomorrow. I intend to participate. But, I've done absolutely nothing to get ready.


I have an idea of what I want to sell and I'll drag as much of it outside as I can, but I feel like I'm breaking every unwritten yard sale rule there is. Here's a basic list of what I should be doing:

1. Have good signs. I'm not making signs. Oops. My neighbors are having yard sales, too. I'm hoping they are going to make signs and people will wander this way. Plus, there should be a lot of traffic through the neighborhood and I'm counting on some of it making its way to our little corner.

2. Sort out garage sale items a month or more ahead of time. I haven't done this. I do have a small box of things that's been in the trunk of my van for a month or more. I collected it when I was cleaning out the kitchen and intended to drop it off at a thrift store. I never made it to the store, so it's going in the garage sale with a few other things.  

3. Price everything. I'm sure going to try, but I'm realistically thinking that I'll likely run out of time to do it all. I figure I can keep pricing when the sale starts.

4. Have change. I went to the bank today and completely forgot to get change for the garage sale. Another oops. I'll have to do the best I can and hope people have exact change. If not, they can have whatever it is for free. I just want to declutter! 

So, it's not likely this will be a success. But, I should be able to get rid of a few things and, from my perspective, that's a good thing.

If you want real yard sale tips, check out Having a Successful Yard Sale by the Yard Sale Queen.


  1. Since this is a community wide garage sale I don't think signage is going to be your issue (although would have been nice to add to the already out there signs)

    I don't believe you need to price everything before you put it out. I price as a I go or use Signs: Clothes: $.50 each 5/$1 same for Books, Video Games, etc. IF I use general signs I keep the prices super cheap and still do well.

    I am sad that there will be no garage sale for me this year, as we have major road construction this year.

    Good Luck and when things like this happen I look at it this way:

    Get out, price and sort as much as you can. Then you have a choice. Do you want to store it all until the end of summer and have a second garage sale (I have done this) if so put it all away with prices and sorted and keep adding to it all summer. Or do you just want to be rid of it? If so sort into donation piles and trash piles and do accordingly.

    Good Luck!

  2. Good advice, Tree. Thanks! I just spent over an hour getting ready for it and am feeling a bit more confident. Maybe it won't be a lost cause. A second garage sale is a good idea, but I do want to declutter, so I think I'll donate everything I can and throw out what I can't.

  3. Well if you don't have a place to stash it, then yes donate and toss. I leave items out on the curb and they are always gone by the next day, then I just clean up the cardboard boxes.

    I am thinking of joining the Community Garage Sale at the Public Market. It is $25 for a 10x10 space but it would motivate me to get it out and keep it out :) But I really do like using my own front lawn....

  4. Did all those things in the fall and only sold about $100 worth of items. Then the garage was full of the stuff and that took a while to get rid of.

    Now I want space for stocking from double couponing. Issues of space never end.

    My second cousin wrote on her blog that "clutter has a mind of its own". Glad she has this wisdom in her twenties!


  5. Hello! I hope your yard sale runs well! Post about it afterwards, please :)

  6. Clutter does seem to have a mind of its own, Carol. LOL I like that!

    Thanks, Nivedha. I posted the update today.