Having My First Yard Sale- Ideas Needed

Updated on July 22, 2010
L.D. asks from Statesboro, GA
12 answers

My community is having a yard sale soon. I have never had a yard sale and was wondering if any of you had tips and suggestions to make it go smoothly. I was thinking about grouping most small items into a certain price such as $1.00 items, $5.00 items and so on and color coding it (ex. green stickers means those items are $1.00). I really appreciate any ideas since I have no idea as to what to expect. Thank you.

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answers from Savannah on

hi L.,
grouping by price has worked well for me when i've had a limited amount of items, but now that i have quite a few things, i've been grouping by category and placing price stickers directly on the items...
my categories are:
small appliances

hope all goes well with you...
sincere blessings
"happily married mother of 4 girls, eldest 22, youngest 3"

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Charleston on

Don't be surprised if people show up way before your listed opening time. You might even want to put a sign on your front door that says somethings like "Do not knock or ring bell before 7am" Have lots of change, spread everything out as much as you can so people can see things well. You can easily make hanging areas for clothes with two ladders and a pole (even a broom stick)...just make sure you tape the pole to the ladders so it doesn't fall off. Put as many things up on tables as possible too. Stuff on the ground never sells as well. Make things CHEAP! Have a chair and beverage/snacks available because you will do a lot of waiting as the day progresses. Hope it goes well :)

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Savannah on

I'm sure you will get lots of responses. I have yard sales all the time everywhere we travel and I find that I get the white price stickers and put my own price on them. I price everything cheap so that it sells. I would rather make something that give it away and make nothing. Of course what doesn't sell gets given to goodwill. I price everything also because when I am out to yard sales I don't like to ask about a price. I like to look and see what they are offering. Also remember that when putting prices on that some people will haggle you lower so keep that in mind. I use only one color tag that way you know what you are looking for when trying to find the price. Good luck?

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Myrtle Beach on

You're on the right track. In addition to that, don't forget to keep lots of change (coins and small bills). Be prepared to negotiate on price too, those little old ladies know how to haggle. LOL One good way to ensure a lot of business is to post an ad in the local newspaper. Make sure to put up signs directing people to the location as well. Don't put more stuff in the sale that you are prepared to put away again or end up giving away. Most importantly...have fun! Good luck!

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Atlanta on

Hi L.,

I just held my first yard sale and had great success. I think it was because I followed the advice of the Yard Sale www.yardsalequeen.com. Some of the best advice was about making the signs clear and easy to read and pricing items low to get them sold.

I personally don't like the color coding thing when I shop at yard sales because they are so hard to follow (and the Yard Sale Queen says she hates them too). So instead, I did a $0.50 table, $1 table, $5 table, etc. but I didn't price the individual items, I just put up a sign that said "ALL ITEMS ON THIS TABLE $1". It seemed to work well.

I also noticed a huge dive in the amount of traffic we had after 2 PM, so it was kind of a waste to have the yard sale past 3 PM (I scheduled it until 5 PM).

Just think like a typical yard sale shopper and ask yourself "what would make me want to buy this?". Relax, have fun and make lots of money! Good luck!

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Savannah on

Sounds like you are on the right track. You may even want some things priced at .50 or .75. No matter what you do, people will still try to "talk" you down in price. Be prepared to negotiate no matter how cheap your prices are. Good luck. I haven't had a yard sale in so long because I hated packing up everything that didn't sale and putting it back in the attic.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Charleston on

Hey L.!

I have been involved with 2 community garage sales in the past, and found that I didn't make near as much money as when I had them by myself - not a community day! It's a wonderful idea, but I didn't have as many shoppers at either one. Maybe use this one as a time to get your feet wet to the experience and then do one in the future on your own.

Make sure you have plenty of change - I get $50 in ones and fives, and use whatever coins we have around the house for my cash box.

Price everything to sell - like other suggestions, I price things low so I know they will sell. Whatever doesn't gets packed up and taken to Goodwill

I don't find that clothes sell that great, but price them all the same and you might get better results. We did $1 for any clothing item and that worked well. They may want to negotioate, so be prepared to take less.

Make sure you have PLENTY of tables to set your stuff on! People don't like to have to bend over and look at things on the ground.

Don't give out bags to put their stuff in - we made that mistake and people ended up filling up with more stuff after they checked out! They'll find a way to get it to their cars if they want it bad enough!

Good luck!

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Atlanta on

Hi L.,

Your idea regarding the color coding stickers is a good one. You've received some great tips but here are a few more.

In addition to change have a calculator and extra stickers handy, wear pants with lots of pockets (like cargo) so you can keep big bills in one and smaller bills with change in another, but keep all the $$$ on your person.

Make sure your husband or someone else is home so you are not doing it alone, weird things happen. I also always have my cell on me.

I would definitely also advertise online with Craigslist, the day before or first thing in the morning the day of.

Tie a a couple of balloons to your mailbox along with signs on the street to help people find your house.

Start keeping all your grocery bags and any cardboard boxes to put the purchases in.

I also tried to give lots of incentives for buying more. (Buy 10 paperback novels and get 2 free!).

There are lots of great websites with good tips too, just google tag garage sale tips advice.

Good luck and have fun!!!


P.S. Have your kids pick out which of theittoys/vidoes/books etc they want to sell, let them set the pricing and tell them they get to keep the $$$ from whatever they sell.

A great practical lesson in finance and limits the tears if you accidently sell the huge stuffed purple Barney that has been sitting in the back of their closet for 3 years but apparently now that it's gone they can't live without!

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Savannah on

I have had many yard sales over the years. Do not price your items too high. Mark them clearly. Be willing to negotiate. Have plenty of change and ones. We always started with a kitty of about $25.00. Have help to watch the area when you have to go into the house. One year we had coffee and homemade cookies for sale. Set a firm time to start, no earlybirds! It is hard to sell things when you are trying to put them all out. In this area, plan to close up between 1 & 2, it is just too hot to continue. and most of all Have fun!

Also take all leftovers to Goodwill. Keep a notebook of what exactly they are and your can go to itsdeductible and find prices of used items to take them off your taxes this year. Clothing is worth alot when you donate it.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Savannah on

My first and only yard sale was horible! Me and my friend did it together, so it was 2 of us doing everything. And when we got our first customers it was a group of like 5 people....so it was hard to watch all of them at the same time, and they stole like a whole bunch of stuff. We had lots of handbags for sale, so those people filled up the bags and ha dtheir husbands put them in a car!!! it was wery sad! and funny at thesame time! I just hope they needeed it more then I did! good luck!

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Atlanta on

Hi, I'd love to come. Got anything for 6-12 mo olds? When and where?




answers from Miami on

The best way to do the cheaper items are to group them into a gift basket so that way you can get rid of all the items in bilk packages. It's also beneficial to put little tags on the items marking their price. There are a handful of tips over at: http://www.garagesalestracker.com on holding and advertising a sale for top dollar.

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