How to Organize a Great Garage Sale

Garage sales are a great way to get rid of all your unwanted belongings or hunt out a bargain. Organization is key to having a great garage sale.

A classified ad is the best way to get lots of people to your garage sale.



1. Create a Game Plan. Advance preparation lets you work with more efficiency. Gather together all the items you are going to sell and price each item ahead of the sale. You could also make extra money by baking ahead of the day or making some tasty sandwiches and cool lemonade. Shopping, browsing and bargaining is hard work, and the folks who turn up will soon be hungry!

Try to hold your sale close to or on the first or fifteenth of the month, which is when many people get paid and have some spare cash in their pockets. Saturdays are the best day and earlier in the day is better than too late in the evening.

Consider teaming up with a few of your neighbors who also like the idea of selling their unwanted items. The bigger the sale, the more people will think it is worth the trouble to pop over and have a look.

Simplify your pricing structure. Use Gather bags and boxes well ahead of time so people will have something to tote their stuff with. Wrapping fragiles in newspapers or providing recycled plastic/paper shopping bags is an added courtesy towards your customers.

You will need some money in a tin or waist bag to give out change. It’s best to be over-prepared with plenty of change as people will often come unprepared with large bills. If you are hoping to make as serious dollar, do not under-price your goods.

2. Create a Fun Atmosphere. Offer some drinks or snacks (it’s a great way for the kids to get involved and make a little extra money.) Have a box of free stuff or maybe a 25 cent bin for kids shopping with their parents. Keep the tables neat and organized.

3. Advertise in Advance. Two methods work best – online advertising and street signs. Get your classified online by Thursday night so shoppers can make your sale destination on their route. Get top dollar for your stuff by including photographs and descriptions of your most attractive items in your classified ad. Make sure your road signs are big, bold and easy to follow. Attach some balloons to really grab attention.

4. Don’t Neglect Security. Always have a friend or family member assist with the sale to keep an eye on things if you take a break. Lock your doors and avoid letting strangers into your house. Keep your dog secured and away from shoppers.

5. Make Clean-Up a Breeze. Some of the garage sale circuit semi-pro’s will offer to haul whatever you don’t sell. You can also check with local thrift stores, who may be willing to collect unsold merchandise. Otherwise, box the remainder to toss or take to a Goodwill store. Use our classified sites to give away unwanted items that remain.