Make Your Set-up Look Nice
Be organized. Have tables, shelves, etc. If you don’t have enough tables or shelves for everything, you can also lay down blankets, quilts, or tarps for the non-breakable type items.
The easier your items are to see and get to, the more stuff you will sell.
Don’t just leave stuff in bags or boxes, because only a few people will take the time to dig through them and it makes their value seem very low.
Here are some photos of do’s and don’ts.
Fill in Empty Table Space as Things Sell
You may not have enough prime table space for all your stuff at first, but as things sell you can fill in the spots on your tables as things sell.
Set up Tables Nicely with Room to Walk Around(Photos)
There is not one right way to set up your garage sale tables, but make sure you leave enough room for people to get the tables without having step on stuff. You can create 2-3 rows of tables if you have enough tables and leave walkways in between.
Put some nicer items near the end of the driveway that will attract people to stop. We all make judgments of garage sales, so if you put some nicer things near the road it will appeal to buyers and entice them to get out and come look.
Sometimes tools or lawn equipment will entice men to stop as well.
Be sure to park your cars a few houses away so that your customers will have plenty of places to park.
If you have a “special” neighbor, you might also want to put something out to protect people from pulling into their grass.
Setting up Clothes:
Hang up the clothes when possible, they will sell better.
There are many ways to do this.
Some hang them from the garage door, others from clothes racks they may have. You can use ladders and run a 1×4 from 2 ladders, or hang them from an adjustable ladder.
With kids clothes it works well to organize them on a table by gender and by size.
Most people will buy out of convenience, but only the diehards will dig through piles. But the pile diggers are typically the ones who will want them for $0.25 a piece when you can typically get $0.50-$2.00/piece if your organized and put a price sign on your table.
Kids Toys or Smaller Items
Put smaller kids toys or smaller items in small ziploc bags and sell them by the bag. Some items just aren’t worth much by themselves, but if you put 5-10 cars in a bag, you can sell it for a $1.
Check Your Stuff:
Go through your stuff to make sure you don’t have anything important in any of the boxes or pockets. A lot of times there could be personal information, or even cash.
Put Price Stickers On Your Items:
If you have the time it helps to put price stickers on your items. Or if you have a lot of the same items like baby clothes, shoes, etc, you can put a sign near them that has the prices of the items.
If you put prices on things, you will have less questions to answer, and will make more sales. Sometimes people will not ask about an item because they’re not really interested, but if they see it’s only $0.50 or whatever, they may just buy it anyway. The old “I may use it or need it sometime”.
Stick with easy numbers. I do things in increments of $0.25 or $0.50. This makes things easier to add up.
If you are using stickers or labels, be careful that you don’t put them on things that will ruin the item. Blue painters tape is good alternative because it removes easily. If something is not good for a sticker, you could always hang a price from it with a rubberband.
Things You Should be sure to Have on Hand…
Be Sure to Have Change
Make sure you have plenty of change to start your garage sale. I would say you should have a minimum of $40 in $1’s and some $5’s. Every sale is different, but it’s amazing how many people early on come with $20 bills to pay for their $1-$2 total. You don’t want to lose sales because you can’t make change for somebody.
Have Grocery Bags Available
Start saving grocery store bags and additional shopping bags to use for your customers. This is very helpful to customers and makes the sale a little easier when you can hand them a bag to start putting stuff in or to help them get it to their car.
Have an Electrical Cord Available
You may want to run an extension cord to your driveway so that when somebody wants to check something out to make sure it is working you will be prepared and won’t have to walk away from the yard sale.
Read onto the next section…