$$$ How To Get THE MOST MONEY $$$$
From Your Nashville Garage Sale
Let Your Trash Be Someone Else’s Treasure!
Whether you’re moving from Nashville, moving within Nashville, or moving to Nashville, shedding back your move load from all the things you no longer need, use, or want makes moving immensely easier. Even if you’re not a “hoarder” you’d be surprised at how much “stuff” you accumulate over the years. Despite the organization and hard work they require, hosting a garage sale is a great way to rid your junk and put a nice wad of cash in your wallet. I pocketed over $1100 from my last garage sale and this is how I did it!
Use Bright Signs w/Dates: The brighter the signs you post on telephone polls, stop signs, etc., the better. (Especially in Nashville where there are lots of trees and shrubs) Regular cardboard signs do not stand out so I opted for hot pink signs with legible big black lettering. There are a lot of garage sale “cruisers” who get up and out early in the AM searching for garage sales so use as many signs as possible (that’s permissible in your neighborhood) to give your prospective shoppers excellent directions. Write in the date(s) of your garage sale rather than just saying “Sat/Sun”. A lot of people forget to take down old signs from previous garage sales so you want your onlookers to know exactly when your sale is taking place. Posting your signs a day or two prior is also an effective way to get the word out.
Post A Craigslist Ad: There is a “Garage Sale” category in the “For Sale” section of Craigslist. Post an ad in this category as well as in “General”, “Furniture”, “House & Garden”, etc. with quick descriptions of what you’re selling. There are a lot of people who spend their weekends garage sale hunting, yet on the contrary, there are a lot of people who when they are in need of particular items don’t think to explore garage sales or even know about the garage sale section of Craigslist. If you lure someone who is looking for a particular item to your garage sale they may end up buying something else they are in need of. YardSaleSearch.com & GarageSaleHunter.com are two other websites designed specifically for advertising garage sales.
Repaint, Buff, Sand: Furniture pieces that are in good structural shape but may have some surface flaws are worth putting a little work into rehabbing to render a good selling price for them. However, in order to keep things cost effective don’t spend too much on materials or time on this. But if a quick coat of paint, gloss, or sanding makes a huge difference then it is definitely worth the effort.
Clean All Appliances Until They’re Spotless: I know it’s not rocket science but the cleaner things are the newer they look. And the newer they look the higher you can price things. Be sure to really clean appliances (microwaves, fridges, BBQ grills, rice pots, crock pots, etc.) as best as you can. Yanking that old heating platter from the attic that you haven’t used since your parent’s anniversary party a decade ago and placing it on a display table, dusty and grimy, is not going to get it sold!
Display Your Items In Sections: Be as visually organized as possible. When a customer goes into any store knowing where to find something they find it! If your items are spread out all over your yard and randomly placed together, things can get overlooked. Departmentalize your items; clothing in one area (organized by gender), kitchen & dishware, furniture, lawn & garden, books, etc. When I hosted my garage sale I placed large signs on tables labeling, “Jewelry”, “Bags”, so-on-and-so-forth. I had many compliments about how organized my garage sale was and how easy it was for people to find things. After all, customers won’t buy things they can’t find.
Price Realistically and Price Easy Numbers To Calculate: The whole reason why people shop at garage sales is because everything is so cheap. Garage sale shoppers are used to buying blouses for a few bucks rather than $10 or $15, and books for $.50 to $2.00. (Obviously this varies depending on how much something is really worth). If you have a $200 leather jacket it’s likely that the most someone will pay for it is $50, probably even less than that. You have to put things in perspective. If you price things too high they won’t sell. And after all, getting $20 for your $50 BBQ grill is still better than getting NADA. The point is to get rid of things. People will bargain with you, so be prepared. You also want to make quick transactions as you will find yourself bombarded. If you’re adding someone up you want to be able to add the prices quickly in your head. Price things to the dollar, or by $.50 for cheaper items.
Have Lots of Change On Your Body: Before you open your “garage doors” and let the stampede in, be sure you have a bank with change on your body (I used a fanny pack), with lots of quarters and singles and 5’s. You don’t want to sell a $20 item and not have change when they hand you a $50 bill. If you have to keep running back to one cash bank that someone is monitoring you can lose a sale. Trust me, when I say it’s a “stampede” I really mean it.
Secure All Animals: If you have dogs, lock them up in the back where they won’t startle people. Some people who do not like animals won’t step foot on a property where dogs are visible. You also don’t want to run the risk of anyone getting bit which in turn can lead to a lawsuit.
Start Early! : Serious garage sale shoppers start very early. (I’ve been told that 7:30AM is considered to be on the late side.) If you open your garage sale too late you will miss out on the market share as people would have already spent there budget at other sales by the time they would’ve gotten to yours. So head to bed early the night before, get up at the crack of dawn, pour yourself a big cup of coffee and be ready to open your doors as early as possible! The earlier you start the more money you will make!