Our family’s having a garage sale. Do you like garage sales? I enjoy going to them, but having them–not so much. I see the benefits. I just don’t enjoy the process. That’s the way it is with much in life!
I do enjoy meeting the people, though! And I love selling things, and getting my house cleared out of “stuff” and the extra things which seem to accumulate so fast! That’s why we’ve had a number of garage sales over the years.
We have always had our children help and we included this as Homeschooling, for it’s excellent organizational “grouping” and practical Math experience as they sort, categorize, and make change. (This reminds me: Have you ever been appalled, as I have been, when a young store clerk was unable to tell you how much change you should receive and make change for you without a computer?!! It’s an important skill to learn, and will also prevent them from being unknowingly cheated.) The skill of interacting with customers in a polite and professional manner is invaluable, too.
Here are the steps to having a successful garage sale. Did I miss any?
Preparing for a garage sale involves:
- Starting months ahead, culling out things that need to go, and having a place in your home for them to accumulate where they won’t be in the way. Deciding what will actually sell.
- Deciding whether to sell the items in the garage sale or on Craigslist or Ebay.
- Doing research online to determine prices for more expensive items, such as vintage, or antiques.
- Deciding what dates and times your garage sale will be held.
- Preparing the area where the sale will take place (in this case, the garage).
- Bringing the items to the garage.
- Cleaning up the items for sale. Making sure the item works and all pieces are there.
- Arranging items on tables by categories. (Borrowing more tables.)
- Deciding on prices. (See Garage Sale pricing guides online.) Buying stickers and placing them, and/or using masking tape to write more descriptive information, on the items.
- Searching storage rooms, cupboards and sheds for more items to sell.
- Making large signs directing people to the sale. Placing them the day before at main intersections leading to your home.
- Advertising (Craigslist, church newsletter, your local email mailing list, handing out flyers in your neighborhood, etc.). Our sale is part of our city’s All-City Garage Sale, which, for $5, includes being listed in their listing of all garage sales being held during that time. (If you live in the Mpls/St. Paul area and would like to come, contact me by email for more information.)
- Baking cookies and buying pop to sell. (Sometimes you make more profit on cookies than anything else!)
- Taking time off from work, (my husband is taking 2 days off) and/or clearing schedules for the days of the sale.
- Getting coins and cash to make change. Finding an appropriate container to keep your cash available, but safe.
- Getting a piece of cardboard to place stickers on as sales are made.
- Arranging a place to sit, with table and chair(s).
- Placing fans to cool the garage, if hot.
- Moving vehicles so that customers can park nearby. Putting up sawhorses to block the driveway.
- Moving the bigger items into the driveway (furniture, etc.).
- Being ready and outside prior to opening time.
Oh, and don’t forget to pray for good weather!