Get The Most From Your Garage Sale

Thinking of strategies to get rid of your unwanted stuff before you relocate, move or downsize?

A garage sale is a great way of decluttering and making some cash into the bargain. As a bonus, if you are planning to sell your home, you may attract potential local buyers in the area.

A successful sale requires some prior organisation, a good ‘on-the-day’ plan and some smart sales tactics. With all this in place, you’re  good to go!

Before You Begin

This is the time to start your clear and de-clutter.  Give yourself enough time to go through each room in your home and any outdoor areas, making a note of the items you want to sell. Putting a coloured dot or sticker on each item as you go is a good way of quickly identifying the items for your sale.

Check with your local council if you need a permit and what restrictions apply regarding putting up signage.

Choose Your Date Wisely

While spring and summer have the benefits of longer days and warmer weather, buyers won’t be put off by cold or wet days if you have your sale under cover and they can browse where it’s warm and dry.

Long weekends?  While the pace is more relaxed and you may be able to hold your sale over an extra day, many people go away.

 It’s probably best to avoid the lead-up to Christmas, but if you have useful school items, holding your sale towards the end of the school holidays may attract buyers looking for textbooks, stationery and study furniture.

A clean, tidy and well-organised space for your garage sale will  prove appealing to customers.

Clear the space for your sale, and banish cobwebs, dust and dirt. Decide on your display strategy. Will you need to borrow or buy tables or display furniture? Having a power outlet in close proximity is a good idea if you want to sell electrical items.

Getting The Word Out

You may choose to keep your advertising ‘local’ by printing flyers and doing a letterbox drop, putting up signage in your neighbourhood or placing an ad in a local newspaper.

To generate interest further afield, post the details of your sale on social media or place an ad on Gumtree.

Keep your ad brief – include the address and date, and a succinct list of what you are selling, including any big-ticket items that may be attractive to people looking for second-hand goods.

The Set-Up

Do a final clean and clear of the sale area, and set up your display tables. Put pricing stickers on each time, or make pricing signs that are easy to read.

Group similar items together and display them in a way that is appealing to attractive buyers. Clothes should be clean, mended and pressed, and hanging on a rack if possible. Arrange jewellery on stands or in display cases and make sure plants look fresh and healthy.

Furniture should be clean and polished.

Games and toys should be in their original boxes if possible, with no parts missing.

On The Day

Snacks and chilled drinks (have cold drinks on ice) available for a small cost will be a winner, especially for families with children. You can even offer coffee and tea if you’re feeling extra fancy.

Have music playing and decorate your sale area with balloons, bunting or streamers for a festive feel.

Things like lucky dips for children are also a good idea.

Start the garage sale at the advertised time – you may feel excited if someone is at your house super-early to snap up a bargain, but someone who arrives at the advertised time for the same item may feel cheated if it has already been sold.

If possible, have family or friends help you run the sale – this is a good security measure and will help you keep the ‘flow’ of customers moving.

Be open to negotiation on price – especially if the day is drawing to a close and you are keen to sell as much as possible. Consider bundling items together, throwing in something free, or just accepting a fair offer if it comes your way.

This doesn’t mean you have to give away your belongings for practically nothing- stand firm if someone offers an insultingly low price, especially if it’s early in the day and there may be other buyers later on.

Safety and Garage Sale Etiquette

Where possible, don’t leave your sale unattended. Have one door to your home open but keep all other access closed off – you don’t want to find curious strangers wandering around your back yard.

Keep pets inside – for their own safety and that of your customers.

Have someone help you run the sale. This is important if you want to take a bathroom or meal break at some stage during the day!

Keep your money on you at all times – have plenty of change and small notes, and if possible, offer other payment methods for more expensive items, such as PayPal and direct deposit. (This is a good thing to advertise beforehand too).

Have a calculator handy so there is no dispute over the price or change givens.

So -there you have it! A garage sale can be a fun way to get rid of your unwanted stuff and make some cash into the bargain.

Is downsizing in your near future?

Perhaps you are planning to move to aged care, a smaller home, or to a retirement facility.

Don’t let the stress and worry of a move get the better of you.

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As an established and growing provider of moving and relocation services throughout south-east Queensland, we offer services to suit a wide range of needs:

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Get in touch today – we look forward to helping you.

Call us on 1300 158 432.

Email our friendly relocations team on info@bluelighthouse.com.au

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