A garage sale is a great way to get rid of extra stuff, but there’s more to it than setting items on tables and selling them. Here are some tips to help you organize a successful sale!

Check Local Regulations

Did you know that different cities have different rules for garage sales? It’s true! Some areas may require permits for a garage sale, limit the number of items you can have, or they could even treat your sale like a small business. The last thing you want, after you make money, is to have to pay taxes or fines. Be sure to double-check that you’re complying with local regulations so you don’t run into any issues.

Decide What to Sell

Of course, the most important part of a garage sale is the stuff. It’s time to sort through your storage spaces, basement, attic, garage, backyard shed, and closets for items to sell. The best thing about these sales is people are looking to buy a variety of items, so anything goes!

For a successful sale, look for top-selling items, like kids’ clothes and toys, small furniture, power tools, gardening tools, and exercise equipment. But home décor, adult clothes, books, and bicycles are items worth including as well. Items that tend not to sell as well include large furniture (which can be expensive and difficult to move), very old items, and anything over $50. Also, reconsider selling anything valuable (antiques, nice art, etc.) or new, as you can resell those items online and get a better price for them.

Organize Your Items

Before you open your yard for business, make sure all your “For Sale” items are organized. This will help you know how to group things when setting them out on your tables. When you have an organized garage sale, you’ll spend less time directing people where to go and more time putting well-earned money into your pocket.

Consider organizing clothes by season, gender, and age. For other items, just make sure they have designated sections (like books, art, school supplies, and miscellaneous.) for easier and quicker browsing.

Advertising is Key

The prep work is done, and you have a date for your garage sale…now it’s time to advertise. About two weeks before your garage sale, you’ll want to advertise it as much as possible. When it comes to promoting your sale, print isn’t dead. The classic method of putting up posters around your area is still a great way to advertise. Just make sure to create bright, eye-catching signs and place them in high-traffic areas so people see them.

The internet is full of valuable opportunities to advertise your sale, too! Try advertising on social media by creating Instagram and Facebook posts, as well as posting on local Facebook groups. Nothing is better than free advertising done in under five minutes.

Take Time to Set Prices

Leading up to your sale, ensure you have all the prices for your items planned out. This is likely going to be the most time-consuming and important part of organizing your garage sale. If you don’t label prices, you’re undercutting the browsability of your sale. Keep in mind you don’t have to individually label every item in your sale with a price, but you should make the prices clear to your customers. For example, all books can be priced using a sign rather than individual tags.

If you’re having trouble deciding what price to set for something, a good rule of thumb is to price it at about 10% of the retail price. Be mindful that many items in your sale will be used or old, so don’t try to overprice or get the same price you paid for the item when it was brand new.

Be Willing to Negotiate

Negotiating is a time-honored tradition of garage sales, so be open to some haggling on the big day. Your goal is to sell as much as possible, and negotiating can help you do so. When a customer drives a good bargain, they put money in your pocket and take those unwanted items off your hands! If there are items you don’t want to negotiate on price, make sure you identify them ahead of time and make it clear the price tag is “firm.”

Change is Important

This tip can often be overlooked, but don’t forget to start the big day with a good amount of change for your customers. You may have to break a lot of bills for people in order to make the right change, and the last thing you want to do is run out. And if you’re holding your garage sale on the weekend, finding a bank last minute may be difficult (and not to mention stressful). You may end up not needing every single type of change from pennies to quarters, but it’s better to be safe than sorry on sale day!

The Bay Street Storage Logo on a white background.

No matter what leftover items you have after your garage sale, we’re ready to store them at Bay Street Storage!

Left with Left Over Items? Store Them at Bay Street Storage!

After your garage sale, you may have some unsold items left over. Donating them is an option to consider, but if you want to sell them again during a different garage sale, store them in a self-storage unit. A clean, secure unit can help you navigate what you want to do with your items while also keeping your home clutter-free.

If you have leftover items after your garage sale, we’re ready to store them at Bay Street Storage. No matter what size unit you need, we have something to accommodate you. We have two convenient locations in Post Falls for you to choose from, and we’ve got all your storage needs covered. We’re here to make your storage experience easy. If you need any help, let us know!