Wednesday, May 22, 2013

3 Steps to a KICK BUTT Yard Sale

Yard sale season is upon us, so I thought I'd share some of my best tips for making lots of moolah with your own sale! Last month my son and I made a total of over $700 on our sale, and we didn't even have much in the way of big-ticket items. You can do it too!!!


Just when you think your pile of yard sale items is complete, think again! We all have things we live with that we don't truly love, right? Why not turn those "meh" items into cash you can use to buy something spectacular?! Seriously, I took artwork off walls, decorative accessories off shelves, clothes out of my closet, and holiday dishes out of my cabinets. Scour every room for things you really don't need or really don't like. It will be uncomfortable, but just remember the wad of cash you'll have to go shopping for new things afterward!

Challenge everyone else in the house to do the same with their own stuff. If you let your kids keep profits off items of theirs that sell, they will be more inclined to purge some of those old toys they no longer play with that are cluttering up the place.


Make sure you price every item. Shoppers don't want to ask you for a price every time they spot something they're mildly interested in. Believe me -- they'll move on rather than go through the hassle. For similar items you might have a lot of, like books, you can post a sign reading something like "Paperbacks $1, Hardbacks $3" if that's easier.

When pricing, be unbiased and focus on what a buyer might pay for it. Try to find that sweet spot that nets you the most money, while still letting shoppers feel like they got a good deal. A good rule of thumb is 10% of the original price, but consider the condition of the item and how current it is. I don't care if you paid $75 for those Guess acid-wash in 1987. Nobody is going to pay $7.50 for them today. Unless they are shooting a period film.

On the flip side, don't sell yourself short. I was surprised how much some of my son's SpongeBob and Star Wars Lego sets are worth, and even some of his Nerf guns. Do some research on Ebay for anything that might be collectible. If you see the same item sold recently for $30 on Ebay, price it at $20 in your yard sale. If it sells, you've saved the effort and fees for putting it on Ebay. If not, you know Ebay is a back-up option. This goes for some electronics too.

Now back to my tip about being ruthless in your purging. If there's something you're not sure about parting with, price it for what you would be happy to sell it for. Maybe it's a beautiful ceramic pitcher that you adored in your "I collect ceramic pitchers and display them above my kitchen cabinets and everywhere else I can think of" phase. (Not speaking from personal experience or anything.) Sure, the pitcher is still pretty, but maybe it doesn't quite ift with your current decorating style. Instead of giving it a rock-bottom-priced-to-move price, mark it at what would make you feel okay with parting with it. If it sells, awesome. If not, you can hold on to it for a little while longer. But do this sparingly, otherwise you're going to be hauling a lot of unsold items back into your house at the end of the day!


Picture the displays at your favorite stores. Isn't it more pleasant to shop where things are organized? If you make it easier for customers to shop, they're more likely to find things to buy, rather than passing up a table full of un-sorted junk. Put like items together -- electronics in one area, kitchen stuff in another, etc.

Clothes sell better when hung, because even if you have them neatly stacked at the start of the sale, once people start picking them up and looking at them, your neat stacks will turn into a hot mess in no time. We use a long metal rod hung across one of our open garage doors. If you have a clothing rack, that's great. Or you can even hang clothes from the spreaders on the side of a tall ladder. Another clothes tip - if it's hard to find the size tag, mark it on the price sticker so people don't have to search.

One great way to entice people into your sale is to display large items closest to the curb. Frequent yard sale shoppers often just do a quick drive-by and if they don't see anything of interest right away, they move on to the next place. Popular items like furniture, bikes, and large baby or kid items are great for this.


Successful yard sales do take effort to put together, but the rewards include less clutter in your house and more money in your pocket! For more suggestions, see my post 10 tips for hosting a successful yard sale.

Got any other tips to share? Leave me a comment!



  1. I hate yard sales! lol I mean I don't like to have them, and I really don't like to go to them. I'm one of those drive by, looking for big items people. ;)

    so happy your sale was such a success Hollie!

  2. Great tips! We need to have one again this year... but I can't get myself properly talked into it. :)

    Kelly @ View Along the Way

  3. I wish these were more popular in the UK but have you seen the size of my front garden? (which is pretty typical) I don't think I'd be able to do more than put a single chair on that spot! lol Instead, all my stuff collects in boxes in the loft marked 'Ugly Decorative Items - do not open unless desperate' (not that that's true.) (it's true.)

    Love these tips though and so pleased you did so well with yours!! Cha-ching!! xxx


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