Thursday, September 18, 2014

Tips to Set Up and Organize a Garage Sale

Garage Sale sign advertising a yard sale
A garage sale is a great way to de-clutter your home while also helping people purchase much needed items at reasonable prices. A successful garage sale depends on successful planning. To plan a successful garage sale, simply follow these tips.

Place Items for Sale in Plain View

Place items for sale within plain reach and view of customer's eyesight. For example, if you have a stack of magazines, fan them out on a table as opposed to stacking them on top of each other, so each magazine is in plain view.

If you choose to display items on your lawn, create a pathway that people can walk between and catch a glimpse of each item from all angles.

Move Items Not For Sale Far Away

Move any items that are not up for sale as far away from the sale items as possible to avoid confusion. Or, simply cover the items with a blanket or tarp etc. so buyers know these items are not for sale.

Place Items Close to the Street

Place large or your "best" items as close to the street as possible. This way, people can get a glimpse of what you're selling as they pass by which will hopefully lure them in.

Clearly Mark Your Prices

Place a price sticker on each of your items so you don't forget the price. This will help make your job easier, and people will know exactly how much each item costs.

Having a lot of lower priced items (for example, .25 cent items) may encourage people to purchase more items and even encourage them to purchase higher priced items too, because they feel like they are getting a deal. Price items at yard sale prices, unless the item is brand new with the tags still on.

Collecting Cash

Some sellers prefer to station their cashier's table at the end of their merchandise section to make it easier for customers to pay for their purchases as they leave the sale. This way, customers are free to accumulate a variety of items and pay for them all at once.

You may think about offering carrying baskets etc. to help make it easier for them to carry a large number of items at one time, or simply hold the items for them until they are ready to check out.

Your cashier station should have a ledger for recording sales and enough cash to give change.

Advertise Well

The marketing of your garage sale will generally determine the success of your sale. Put time and effort into making high quality, easily readable signs that will catch people's attention. The bigger and brighter the signs, the better.

Many people experience success on free sites such as Craig's List. The more details you put in your ad, the more likely your items are to show up in searches. Focus on your hottest sellers, and list specific details such as sizes and brands etc.

Teach Your Children Entrepreneurial Skills in the Process

Help your children set up a bake sale and lemonade stand so they, too, can share in the entrepreneurial spirit. If it's fall outside, your children can serve toasty treats such as hot chocolate with marshmallows, coffee, S'mores or even fresh cinnamon rolls which will go a long way in making your customers feel appreciated, especially on a cold Saturday morning.

Getting Organized for Your Garage Sale

  • Collect Clutter Year Round- When you come across clutter you longer need, stick it in a box. Once the box is full, fill another one and so on, all the way up until garage sale day.
  • Timing is Everything- Choose a time of year when the weather will be pleasant. Check the weather forecast ahead of time to be sure the weather is clear for that day.
  • Select a Location- If possible, select a location that is near a busy intersection or a location that is easy to get to.
  • Plan- At least 2-3 days before the garage sale, take a day and price and organize everything, and post your ads on the internet. The day before your sale, get your cash together, and post your signs.
  • Displaying Your Items- Do you have enough space? How are you going to display your items? Ladders, clothing racks, tables, TV trays, upside down cardboard boxes, crates and even the patio are great ways to display your items. However, it is best to display your items off the ground to avoid ground moisture or dew.
  • Select Themes- Group your items in themes to help make them easier to locate.
  • Have fun!

Robert Mizrahi
Home Organizing Services

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