Posts Tagged ‘yard sale’

PostHeaderIcon Garage Sale over: Next Project to Obsess over

The Garage sale went well. We had a really cool day which may have kept some people at home. Overall, I made $213. It’s better than nothing, but not quite the fortune I had anticipated. It did, however, force me to take stock of what was considered sale worthy and decide carefully where all of the remaining items should go.

As we cleared out the driveway I separated items as follows:

  • Continue to try and sell on CraigsList
  • Donate
  • Save for future craft project
  • Save for future Garage Sale

The reality is, I have a lot of junk but I also have a lot of space in my unfinished basement. As I was sorting things, I decided to go with the above mentioned categories because I could always decide on donating at a later date. When viewing 10 or so glass vases and about 10 champagne glasses I realized that I have been guilty of purchasing such items at the dollar store to create party decorations (centerpieces). So, why not create a stock pile for now? Other items for keep included pictures that had decent frames. If I can’t sell them, why not utilize the frames for my own decor- hell, there is always spray paint to really make stuff work!

Now, the keep for garage saling in the future, well that may be a bit presumptuous. But, I am a planner and planners often have a hint of hoarder to them (with thinking ahead and what not). These items walk a fine line between valuable and not valuable to me. Plus, they are too small or less than the $5-$10 mark that I think they must be for CraigsList. Yes, I categorize things like crazy- in my head, on paper and with labels.

This brings me to the next project: CraigsList sale items. Pictures, detailed listings and get those suckers outta here!!!

PostHeaderIcon Yard sale in action

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PostHeaderIcon Yard Sale Virgin

I admit it. I have ventured to many. Spent my money at a few. I even participated in a group yard sale. I, however, have never held my own yard sale. I actually never had much of a yard, or a driveway for that matter, to handle such an event. Until now!

As my family grows, acquires crap, grows out of crap, and just plain gets sick of crap its a general progression to the suburban yard sale. I started preparing for this yard sale over a year ago when we were moving. I packed boxes marked specifically for the occasion and put them in the corner of the basement. I have amassed a little mountain that is slowly creeping into the rest of the basement. So, fall is upon us and it is time to get grooving.

I’ll share with you how I’ve organized this event and then let you know if it worked. First, I started my assessing my wares and deciding on the categories. It always helps to be organized. It’s easier to manage others and if you have a map of your plan people are not always asking you where things go. My categories go something like this:

  • Clothing and shoes (overall, this is a fashion section)
  • Baby items (strollers, car seats, etc)
  • Dishes and kitchen utensils
  • Appliances and Electronics
  • Christmas Decorations
  • Office and craft supplies
  • Housewares/Decor
  • Lighting, Fixtures, Window coverings
  • Books, movies and toys

My plan is to hang the nicer clothes on a rack and neatly fold the remainder by general size and orientation (example: 4-10 women, infant boy, etc) in a retail style. The clothing, along with the remainder of the the smaller items, will also be sub-categorized by price. I would like to have, for example, an entire table or box that is $1, $2, etc. The big ticket items will be priced individually. You might think that pricing and organizing is jumping the gun a bit as the sale needs to be promoted. But, there is a method to my madness.

I advertised for this sale via Craigslist and Ebay Classifieds. In addition, I found a local news station that also allows you to put in a free ad for garage and community sales in the area. I created multiple ads every day starting one week prior to the sale. Some people only search by the most recent ad, so the duplication is necessary. Some of my ads (Craigslist) included the description of a big ticket item, like one of my twin strollers and infant car seats. This opened the sale up to really interested buyers early on and left it open to those on the fence to come to the yard sale. My internet campaign also included a message out to my Facebook friends.They were invited to sell their own stuff, come visit or pass the message on. The last form of advertising was very old school: signage. I found bright garage sale signs, some even staked for easy installation, at my local dollar store. I put up about 10 of them at the various entrances to my neighborhood. One sign sits on my front yard and the morning of the sale, two more will go at the end of my street to direct traffic (I don’t want to anger neighbors in advance).

The most important part of any retail environment, once you get the folks there, is keeping them there, shopping, happy and with the right customer service. For that, I am preparing a pot of coffee (should be a cool morning) and all the necessities for a proper store. Here is my list, but I invite you to customize for yourself:

  • Shopping bags
  • Wrapping paper/Newspaper (for fragile items)
  • Clear price tags and price signage (to provide a haggle starting off point)
  • Tape, markers and scissors (Cause you never know)
  • Calculator
  • Change (Dollar bills, small change and maybe a couple of $5 bills)

Ready to go! I’m following my yard sale bible and we will see how it works. I’ll report back to you later!