Archive | October, 2009

Tips for Selling Unwanted Clutter, Garage Sales, Part 2

Tips for Selling Unwanted Clutter, Garage Sales, Part 2

You have been busy decluttering your house. It looks great! You saved some of the clutter that you thought that you could resell for a garage sale. The time has come for the big day. You have been pricing, have advertised your sale at least a week ahead of time, and are ready for your sale to take place. Here are some ideas for preparing the last days before the sale and the day of the garage sale itself.

The Day before the Sale

If at all possible, set out your garage sale the evening before the sale. You will have enough to do the day of the sale. Finish any pricing of items that you might have missed. You can set items up in some sort of order, or just set them out. Clothing should be folded neatly or hung for better viewing and sales. Books can be put in cardboard boxes in only one layer, so your potential customers can easily see what you have. If you have a set of dishes, put all of them in one box and price the box. Make sure that your customers can see what you have without digging through layers of miscellaneous junk.

One important aspect of the physical area of your garage sale is to make sure that your customers have room to walk without tripping. This is one of the major reasons that you put your items on some sort of shelf or table instead of leaving it on the floor of your garage or on the ground. No matter how careful you are in setting your garage sale up, if items are on the ground, people can trip over them. Be sure that your items are sitting securely on their shelf or table, to avoid breaking the item.  While the garage sale is in progress, look around and fill in empty spots by moving items into more visible spots. Moving items around helps them sell, as any retailer will tell you.

Be sure you have money to make change for your customers. Get this money from the bank the day before, so you are set up and ready to sell your items right away the next day. Depending on the size of your garage sale, you may need to have a box to store your money. And if you have a reliable friend or neighbor helps you watch the garage sale and the money box, you will be able to keep your earnings safe. Unfortunately, people steal from garage sales as well as from retail stores. To avoid loosing your garage sale merchandise to thieves, keep the more valuable items next to the person making change and watching the money.

All of those empty grocery store plastic bags will come in handy for your garage sale customers. You might also want to have a few boxes around for your customer’s convenience.

Set a reasonable time to start your garage sale. If you want your sale to start at 8:00 a.m., be sure your advertising states that fact. There always seem to be some shoppers that try to come early. Decide whether or not you will sell to these people. If you don’t want anyone at your sale before the stated time in the newspaper ad, merely state that “early shoppers pay double.” Some people may actually come early and be willing to pay twice the marked price for an item. Take the money with a smile and wish the buyer a good day.

Toward the end of the sale, start slashing the prices of your garage sale treasures. Remember, these are things that you have sorted out of your house, and don’t want to take back into your house. Any money that you can get for this stuff is better than having that clutter in the house again. Bag sales are also a great way to get rid of those last few lingering items. Charge a dollar or two per bag, and get rid of a few more of those plastic grocery bags, as well.

Talk to your customers. Watch how they react to certain items. Make a deal with them if they appear to have a hard time deciding on whether or not to buy an item. Answer their questions and be friendly with them. Enjoy the process of selling your unneeded items. You will be decluttering and making some money at the same time.

If you have anything left when your garage sale is done, you have one final sort to do. Box up the items you think a thrift store or shelter could really use. Be honest with yourself about this, because these establishments become overwhelmed with clutter, too. Then throw the rest away. You decluttered your house, gave the neighbors an opportunity to buy a bargain, and donated to the needy. You might be tired, but you should also be proud of your accomplishments.

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