Friday, July 13, 2007

The Thing About Garage Sales...

You end up SO TIRED at the end of the day! LOL!!! I was up and running at 6:30 and STILL was not ready by my 8AM opening time. Then hubby put up the signs and a flood of people came! Even the new neighbors (and their moving company) commented on how many people we had and asked what our secret was. LOL!!! We were open until 2, and man was it HOT! Forty minutes later everything was back in the garage for tomorrow - Day Two! :)

And how much did I make today? Well, considering most everything was $1 or 25cents, I think $160 is pretty good! LOL!! I got rid of a LOT of stuff! YEAH!! The way I look at it is, make some money while getting rid of a LOT of stuff. :) I Just miss the other sales I could have been at while I was having my sale! LOL!!!

My Tips For A Good Garage Sale
(again, remember my goal is to make SOME money while getting rid of a LOT of stuff)

I hated having a garage sale and making $300 and still having a TON of stuff to haul off to Goodwill. So after several garage sales (and by several, I mean prolly close to 40 in the past five years LOL!) I have learned how to make just as much money but not have all the STUFF to bring back inside or haul of to Goodwill.

First, don't charge a lot of money! The less money you charge for things, the MORE people will buy from you. When people find out most everything is a quarter or even a dollar, they will stay around and look for longer and even end up picking up stuff they don't want or need. THIS IS ESPECIALLY IMPORTANT in today's society because everyone, even the garage salers, are pinching pennies and being careful to only buy stuff they need or really REALLY want. But most all garage salers CAN NOT RESIST a good bargain. And 25cents is a GOOD BARGAIN!

I usually charge $3 for my adult dresses on Friday and $1 on Saturday. Think about it this way, would you rather sale 1 dress for $3 and take two back in or sell all three for $1 and take none back in! I will admit that on some of the nicer stuff (like my dresses), I charge higher prices on Friday. But still cheaper than most (as most garage sales here sell adult dresses for $5 each). And my books and baby clothes are 25cents each too (although the REALLY nice dresses are $1 and the REALLY nice books are 50cents).

And unless the offer is ridiculously low, take the offer! Think to yourself: what would *I* be willing to pay for this at a garage sale? And if the offer comes close, take it. Sometimes if it is low, I give them the number I would pay, and they always accept that. :) And they usually call their friends and say "You gotta goto this garage sale at ______. The prices cannot be beat!" LOL!!

Secondly, have music playing. I like to have soft Christian music playing (it opens up some GOOD conversations with people!), but if I did not have that, I would prolly have soft classical playing. Music has been shown to make people want to stay longer wherever they are. Some study dome somewhere. LOL! I remember trying it at a garage sale I had a couple years back. No music, people came and left. Music, people would stay and even start conversations.

Thirdly, signs are SO IMPORTANT! Make sure all your signs ARE THE SAME COLOR! They need to know that they are following YOUR signs! And make them big enough to READ! Print CLEARLY! And draw a HUGE arrow! I usually use neon pink signs and draw a very THICK BLACK arrow. Make the head of the arrow a full triangle and color it in. There is no denying THIS WAY to my garage sale! LOL!! Keep the words FEW! Too many words are not necessary! AND they limit the people who come. If you put BABY on your sign, all the people not interested in baby stuff will pass you over. Let them do a "drive by" if they are not interested in baby stuff. They might just see something that only THEY would have bought (but missed if you limited your advertisement to baby people).

GARAGE SALE! Fri - Sat. 8-2. Don't put all the stuff you have on there. No one can read it with how fast they are going and it takes away from what's important. Sale. THIS WAY! LOL!!!

And if someone near you is having a garage sale FIND OUT about it. Scope the neighborhood and make a bond. I will send people to your sale if you send them to mine. That way, should they stop at the other sale THINKING it is yours, they know that just a street or two down is your sale (the signs they have been following this whole time).

And make sure at LEAST two signs are on a major road pointing to the off roads to your house.

Fourthly (is that a word?), have refreshments for your guests! Homemade lemonade is nice, but people really want something they can grab and go. So I buy sodas and bottled waters. Now, you see sales where people are charing $1 for a bottle of water, and you wonder just how much water they will be drinking for the next month! LOL!! Make sure your drinks are chilled (even the water). I had mine in an ice cooler. The soda I had was Sam's Choice and my cost was 12.7cents a can. Selling it for 25cents a can gives me almost double my money back! Bottled water cost me 17cents per bottle and I sold those for 25cents too (don't you hate it when garage sales charge MORE for bottled water than for soda?!?!), so I made 8cents profit. PLUS IT KEEPS YOUR CUSTOMERS HAPPY! Happy people stay longer and shop longer. I am not selling the refreshments just to make money, but to make people happy.

And SECRETLY give a bottle of water to all the old ladies who come to your sale. Part of it is our Christian duty to care for the elderly, and part of it is trying to make them comfortable. How many elderly die each day from heat stroke? If you can do something to prevent that, shouldn't you?

I plan on making at least another $100 tomorrow. I usually make $250 - $300 on such a sale and usually only have a small box or two to take to Goodwill when all is said and done. :) But right now I AM BEAT! So off to bed! Goodnight!

No comments: