A few months ago, my pal Sarah and I kicked around the idea of having a yard sale. She had plans to put her house up for sale, therefore declutter and I knew I just had a ton of crap to get rid of. So we decided to sell our wares to the public. But we had to go about it in a smarty-pants way. First, we had to pick a weekend almost guaranteed to get nice weather. Boom. May. Done. Since it was a few months out, we are giving ourselves plenty of time to prepare. Then we picked a location. My house has a big driveway and is convenient to a Goodwill for any leftovers to be donated. Done. So with May quickly approaching, I've been organizing and brainstorming my plans. I thought I'd share a few of my favorite yard sale techniques. I consider myself a well-seasoned yard saler. I've planned and implemented (action words? am I putting this on my resume?) multiple moving sales as well as packing my car up with junk to bring to other people's yard sales. I excel in negotiating the value of my crap with strangers.
1. Advertise Online --- Of course, you've got to tell people about your sale. And Craigslist is pretty much the best way to do it. I start the Thursday before my weekend sale and post everyday. Be sure to include all your info plus anything specific that you're selling. Mint Condition Collection of 1970's Burt Reynolds posters? LIST THAT SHIZZ! I usually tell early-birds to take a hike too. No one likes a creepster in a hoarding van showing up to your driveway when you're still bleary-eyed and dragging your stuff out of the garage, looking for a deal.
2. Advertise Locally --- I'm talking old-school, nail a sign to a telephone pole type of thing. My preferred method is to cut a piece of neon poster board in half and go at it with a black magic marker. Write big and be brief. But be clever too. Grab their attention.
3. Be Organized --- Don't wait til the morning of to try to arrange your shit on a sheet on your lawn. Take some time to put your stuff in categories ahead of time, so when 7am rolls around, you're not trying to make a quesadilla maker look good sitting inside a box of legos. Right now, I have a room dedicated to my wares. I have piles for housewares, home dec, crafts, games/activities, baby stuff and clothes. I've also planned out what kind of tables I have to lay things out on. Because you know what I hate? A yard sale with a bunch of stuff strewn across the yard. Plus, who doesn't like a well thought out display? Just because you're selling your, um, trash doesn't mean it needs to be jumbled in a box.
4. Make that money --- Be prepared to let your stuff go for almost nothing. Now if you're like me and change your home decor tastes like you change underwears, then you probably have a decent collection of stuff in pretty decent condition. I'm sure that nice vase you paid 50 bucks for has barely been used but guess what? It's a yard sale. Now it's 2 bucks. MAX. Or if you're in the mood to negotiate, ask your customer to make you an offer. You might be pleasantly surprised. They might offer you 2 and a QUARTER! But hey, money is money and it's more than you'd get if that vase was sitting in your basement not being used or dropped off in a box to the thrift store. Oh and also...have change ready. Head to the bank the day before and get some 1's. Resist all stripper jokes as you wave your fan of 1's around. Also get some coinage since you'll be selling your shizz for 75 cents allllll day long.
5. Be Properly Dressed and Nourished --- I can't tell you how many sweatshirts I wished I had on chilly spring mornings, bottles of sunscreen I wished I had around 11am when the sun is ba-lazin and granola bars I wished I had when I realized I'd been sitting outside without eating a proper breakfast for hours. Dress in layers, keep some sunblock handy and keep some snacks and drinks nearby. And if you're joining me, it's gonna be Miller Highlifes for breakfast. They make the creepers all the more entertaining.
Got any surefire tips to add? Let's hear em!