Monday, July 21, 2014

When Do you Know When it's Time for a Garage Sale?

Garage sales aren’t necessarily the easiest thing to pull off, whether you’re planning one to make a few extra dollars, or just clear out some of the extra stuff you’ve got laying around your house. There’s the loss of a weekend (or two,) the difficulty of pricing everything fairly, and then of course, the constant haggling over a few quarters here and there as everyone who comes to your sale tries to sweep up your stuff for nothing. Still, there are a host of benefits to be found from setting aside a few weekends every year to de-clutter and put a few greenbacks into your pocket. Have you ever run a yard sale? No? There are a few things you’re going to have to keep in mind, so read on so you can get the most from your sale, and not get taken advantage of (or cased by thieves!)

Obviously, the first step in putting together a garage sale is scrounging up some stuff that you don’t want anymore and has no purpose in your life. Can’t think of anything? Try this for starters: Go around your house and put everything you haven’t touched in a year in a pile. Exempt family pictures and things of that sort, but toss books, videos, video game consoles, clothes, and furniture on the pile without thinking twice about it. You haven’t touched them, right? Well, there you go! 

Next, it’s time to price stuff out! If you don’t know what your old golf clubs, bowling balls, and computer monitor are worth, take a look on Ebay before you list them. Look at the prices that they’re selling for, and then price your items accordingly. Remember that people will try to haggle you down to next to nothing, so don’t make the mistake of thinking you don’t have to know what your stuff is worth. You may be trying to clear up some room in your closet, but that’s no reason you should be taken advantage of.

Once you’ve got your stuff priced, it’s time to figure out when your sale will be. Check with your neighbors to find out if they will be having a sale anytime soon, and try to hold yours in conjunction with theirs. Obviously, the more the merrier, since people who love going to yard sales tend to gravitate to neighborhoods who have sales all together. That way, they don’t have to drive as far to get a good deal.

Next up, think about your home security. Sure, that’s the time you’re probably least thinking about someone coming along and stealing your stuff, but as any seasoned police officer will tell you, any excuse to take a peek at your stuff is a good excuse for a thief. In the case of a yard sale, you may be inviting them right in! Rather than keeping your garage door open, consider borrowing a shade canopy from a friend, and holding your sale in the driveway. That way, potential thieves won’t get a look at all the tools, the ATV’s, cars, and other stuff that you’ve got in the garage. Don’t think they’d be interested? To a seasoned thief, that box on the shelf at the back of your garage with old aquarium decorations in it could be a clue to what you’ve got inside the house. 

A garage sale is a great way to put together a few dollars over the summer, and done right, can be an even better way to alleviate the stress of having piles of stuff all over the house. Aren’t convinced yet? Maybe you aren’t ready to part with your junk. If that might be the case, then ask yourself, do you own your stuff, or does it own you?

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