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I’ve been having yard sales for over 20 years. In that time, I’ve made some pretty good money, but by far this was my biggest to date, and the money keeps rolling in!
I’m going to break it down for you step by step so you can score big at your next sale!
How To Make The Most Money From A Yard Sale – How I Made $2565!
Get Your Items Together
Chances are you’re ready for a yard sale because you’re either sick of the clutter or need some extra cash or both.
The biggest question always is, “What am I going to part with?”
Only you can decide what you’re ready to let go of and what you’re not. In the end, when determining what I was going to get rid of I used the Kon Mari Method, which I wrote about a few weeks ago.
If you use this method, you’ll probably end up with far more than you originally planned because let’s face it, most material possessions don’t bring us joy.
I went area by area of my home starting with the basement, then my office, then onto the attic, bedrooms or second floor and ending on the first floor of the house.
As I gathered items, I marked each (more on that later) placed in a box or other storage container and put it in a corner of the room.
I had too much stuff to place it in one spot, so I had to deal with the boxes for several weeks.
Price As You Go
The biggest mistake you can make is to throw stuff in a box and price later.
The problem with this thinking is you forget all about pricing and the day of the yard sale comes and you’ve got all these items unmarked.
Believe me when I tell you pricing as you go will save you major headaches later.
Choose The Best Price for You
As for what I picked for pricing, I will tell you that nothing was rock bottom. I had some items that I was willing to take somewhat of a hit on, but others I held firm in my price and rejected several insulting offers on items I knew someone else would pay.
For example, I had a man’s bike helmet. A man offered me $1 for it and I flat out refused. It had a sticker price of $5. He said, “You won’t take a dollar?” and I replied “no” at least five times. A while later, a man offered me $4, and I took it!
The same thing happened with a guy wanting to purchase my old computer. I was asking $50; he wanted to pay $30, and I refused. Another buyer was watching this transaction out of the corner of her eye and came up to me at gave me $40 for it! Win-win!
There’re lots of great ideas about pricing all over the internet, but I will tell you this – only you can decide what you’re willing to price an item at. There’s a buyer for everything out there so don’t just think you have to sell everything for $0.25 or $1.00.
When and Where To Have Your Sale
I’ve held yard sales at all times of the year and my absolute favorite time is early spring (think late April early May).
Those yard salers are restless from a long cold winter stuck indoors, and they are aching to get outside and start haggling and picking through your junk.
Without a doubt, I make more money in spring than summer. When, frankly, it’s too darn hot outside to sit all day with the sun beating on my head, or late summer/early fall when people have basically had enough and are burnt out on yard sales.
Stick with spring when you can and you won’t go wrong.
When determining where to have your yard sale, make sure you do it at a prime location.
If this means you have to haul your stuff to someone else’s house, so be it. I once hauled ten bags of clothes, shoes, and accessories to my friend’s store for a community yard sale just because the location was so fabulous. I made over $400!
I live in a townhouse community, and our location was ideal because we are located off a major intersection and easily accessible from two major highways.
Second, we were marketing the event as a HUGE Multi-Family Yard Sale, which it was. We had over 15 families participate spread out over the entire complex.
In the end, we had hundreds of people walk through the complex to visit yard sellers.
Make Sure You Have Help
If you’re planning on a big sale and you’re expecting lots of people, make sure you get help.
First, it’s a lot of work hauling tables and items for the setup, but then you have the actual selling portion and the breakdown to consider too.
I had three people help me set up and break down.
Put Out All Your Clothes
Lots of people advise against this strategy but I say, don’t listen to them and here’s why:
Where I live, adult clothes are a huge hit, and I make a lot of money on my clothing. We have a significant Hispanic population in my neighboring community and as a result, they are always on the hunt for cute clothes.
If I didn’t put it all out, I‘d miss out on selling my clothes and the profit right along with it. You’ll be the best judge of this depending on where you reside and your communities yard selling habits.
The trick if you’re selling clothing is to have plenty of rack space or other areas to display the clothing.
Put your best stuff on racks, neatly fold sweaters and t-shirts on tables or on the lawn and put shoes in bins or out on a blanket. Give people plenty of room to rummage and you’ll be amazed how much you can get rid of. Oh, and of course, label everything!
Advertise, Advertise, Advertise
1. First, let’s talk the internet
People are on the web looking for deals and yard sales, so make the most of it by posting your event all over the place. We had lots of luck on Facebook and collectively as a group posted to over 30-yard sale groups in the area promoting the event. Additionally, we posted to several community groups too.
Post everywhere you can think of. Here’s just a sampling of the places we posted:
- Facebook Yard Sale Groups
- Facebook Community Groups
- The online section of our local paper
We posted several days ahead of the big event and then kept posting throughout the day with pictures of hot items that were still available. Many people told us they found us on Facebook and Craigslist.org, so make sure you take the time to post to these sites.
2. The Local Paper
People still read the paper and therefore we took out a small ad in the Yard Sale section of our local paper. Many of the folks who visited us were 60+ years and older and saw it via the paper.
3. Signs, Signs, Everywhere A Sign
We took the time to put signs up everywhere. We live in an area where there is a major intersection that connects two major highways, Rt 93 and Rt 495. We took advantage of our exceptional location and put signs up at the intersections, down the street going in all four directions, at the local school which is less than a mile away and at our neighborhood convenience store. In all, we made over 14 signs and posted them everywhere!
Lastly, we put Balloons on the light posts to the entrance of our complex so folks would know they were in the right place. It helped in a big way as people said they knew immediately they had the right townhouse complex when they saw the balloons.
The Sales Keep Coming
After the yard sale was over I kept on selling on the local yard sale groups. I’ve already sold the following:
Dresser and Bureau for $125
Couch and end tables for $340
Washer and Dryer for $80
Vintage Linens for $245
Miscellaneous Home Decor for $100
Total of these items is $985! for a grand total of $2565!!!
A Few More Sales To Make
I still have a few things left to sell and as I get closer to moving I may have to let some things go for free. If I do I’ll use my local FreeCycle.org site.
Want to make sure your next yard sale is a huge success? Use these tips and strategies to get the most money for your stuff.
Best of luck and leave me a comment and let me know how you did!