View Full Version : How do I have a garage sale...
08-04-2007, 11:14 AM
...without having a garage sale?
I don't live in an easy to find spot, I wouldn't have anyone to help, and I only own one table, which would be for sale (likely). That said, I have a ton of stuff I need to get rid of and would like to make some money off it.
How do I do it? Ebay? Craigslist? What about the small stuff? And I'm really not shipping the big stuff (like the surround sound system and table). I have tons of baby clothes I'm going to sell now (since we just had DS2 and even if we had another, the clothes would be 10 years old by the time DC3 came along, if ever).
What do I do? I'm happy to give leftovers to charity, but I don't have a job right now and we could use any $ we could make, KWIM?
If I have to end up having a garage sale, how do I do it? I've never had one (nor participated in one) so help! How do you price things? Advertise? Tips? How do you keep thieves from taking your stuff? We don't have a lot of furniture. Mostly clothes, a few small electronics, books, knick knacks, etc. Is it even worth it to have a garage sale?
Thanks in advance for any advice,
08-04-2007, 11:32 AM
I have had four garage sales in the past 2 years and some have done better than others. I would advertise only on Craigslist. That is where we got 90 % of our shoppers from .Start it at 7:00 and run it until latest 11:00, we never had many shoppers after 10:30 or so. Make sure you list exactly what you are selling. Children's clothes always do well and if you have good name brands, list that too. Put up some garage sale signs around where you live the day before too. I bought yard sale tags at Target to price all my merchandise with. I priced it a little bit higher and that way there was some bargaining room . I also seperate all my clothes into plastic containers labeled for boy/girl and size. I never had anything stolen, atleast that I noticed. Just make sure you keep your money with you at all times. Oh, and get some change (.25 and dollars) from the bank too.
08-04-2007, 12:16 PM
sometimes you can get a table at a community yard sale or go in with a friend/neighbor on a yardsale. The stuff you list are stuff that does well at yardsales so I'd say it would work! Could you get a couple neighbors together? Multi family yardsales get tons of people and I look for yardsales that advertise kids clothes.
08-04-2007, 09:31 PM
Thanks for the advice. I'm going to think about it. A garage sale is a huge undertaking, and your advice will make it easier (if I go through with it)!
08-05-2007, 11:18 AM
If you have a garage sale, check into what's the norm in your area. Here, Thursday is the most popular day, followed by Friday. Saturday's are dead. Most start at 9, some at 8, and I've never seen one listed earlier than that. Trust me, we garage sale a lot - DS is learning days of the week and he knows that Thursday means Garage Sales!
Also, a PP said end at 11. Here, there is always a surge around lunchtime. If I'm out past about 2pm, I'll stop at some, but there aren't many people still shopping.
Do you have Mom 2 Mom sales? That would be a good way to do the clothes. Basically, it's like having 40 child-themed garage sales under 1 roof. They cost $15-$25 around here.
If the clothes are higher-end brands, ebay does really well. If you don't want to sell, maybe you have a friend that can buy them from you for her to resell? I've done that for a friend in the past.
08-05-2007, 06:08 PM
Thanks! These are great suggestions for alternatives and options. I'm still waaaay on the fence about it (mostly because I wouldn't have any help, and with a 5yo and a 5mo, it'd be hard!), but I'm trying to get a leg up in case I decide to do it (or fortuitously come across some help!).
08-06-2007, 08:50 AM
I was also going to suggest that you look into one of the big consignment sales like Just Between Friends or Mom-to-Mom... This is the time of year they are happening.
Generally, you get around 75% for your consignment and whatever is left can be donated.
Another option is to partner up with a couple of friends or family members.
Also check into what goes on locally. Things really vary around the country. Here, Craigslist isn't so popular with garage sale types and classified ads are cheap. I've never seen a sale on Thursday.
I usually run a brief ad in the paper and put up signs. Also, where I live, most sales are on Saturday, though occasionally you'll see something on Friday.
08-06-2007, 01:34 PM
Thanks for the advice. One more question, though: what type of stuff does one sell at consignment stores? I have decent brand name clothes (Ann Taylor, Banana Republic, for example), but is that all one can sell at consignment stores (clothes)?
Thanks again; I love that the advice keeps coming because just the idea of such a grand scale project is a wee bit scary.
08-06-2007, 02:37 PM
The consignment SALES here will take pretty much anything, as long as it is in good condition. They don't want stains, excessive wear, etc... just regular common sence applies. There aren't fashion police. If you aren't wearing it anymore because you no longer like the style, it is fine. If it is trashed, throw it away. Pretty much the same goes for baby stuff...
Oddly, higher end kids stuff isn't always the best selling. I can have a WalMart brand top and a Hanna Andersson top, both marked $3.50, and the the WalMart one will sell. It is one of the reasons I started selling my "better" kid's clothes on ebay...
Last year, my friend's Mountain Buggy with every accessory in the world sat unsold while used Gracos sailed out the door. It just depends on who shows up to shop.
The adult consignment STORES vary widely... some will only take things a couple of years old from particular stores. The times I tried, they REALLY seemed to know what "their" customers wanted and it was pretty specific... I also had a lot of Ann Taylor and Banana Republic which was 2-3 yrs old, more too big/small from yo-yo dieting than too out-of-fashion.
That said, every store has a different idea of their customer base. One may be all about Chicos, the next couture, the next professional clothing. All seemed to want plus-sizes and maternity.
08-06-2007, 03:07 PM
If you have a garage sale I would recommend letting your 5yo have a lemonade sale or bake sale at the same time (and let them keep the proceeds). It'll keep them busy, add to your profits, maybe get you more customers and I bet dc will have fun! My ds just had his 1st lemonade sale last week and he had a blast. :) I'd price things real simply though so he could make change if you were busy.
08-06-2007, 07:13 PM
As for a table, we used 2 cheap sawhorses and a big piece of plywood (if you or a friend has one). I draped over a super cheap plastic tablecloth (party supplies) from Walmart. This created a large display area. I also sold cans of soda for .50, and a lot of people bought them. If you have a little boombox, play some music too. As for leftovers, you could post on freecycle, that at a certain time, people can come and pick up leftovers for free.
08-06-2007, 11:48 PM
This is a great idea, but DS1 (the 5 yo) is autistic and speech impaired, so maybe in a couple more years. Great idea, though! I would much rather just have a lemonade sale with him so he could learn eye contact and social skills! :)
08-06-2007, 11:49 PM
I love the soda idea! I'm the type that offers the mailman a cold bottle of water on summer days because it's hot. I can't go through my profits by giving away soda, though...
Thanks for the great ideas!
08-07-2007, 07:11 AM
No, we actually sold cold cans of soda for 50 cents each. almost everyone bought one. You could buy a variety of 12 packs and have your kids keep the profits.
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