Tips for Having a Successful Garage Sale

Posted by Shannon Serpette on 11/6/2017 to Parenting Tips
tips for a successful garage sale

Whether you’re having a garage sale just to make space in your closets or you’re hoping to make some serious money by unloading a ton of stuff, there are some basic rules to having a garage sale that will help you reach your goal.

With these tips, you’ll look like an old garage sale pro, even if it’s your first attempt.

Build Some Wiggle Room in Your Prices

While you don’t want to overprice your items, you also need to keep in mind that people love to go to garage sales to haggle over prices. If you’ve already listed your rock bottom price, they won’t feel like they’re getting a good deal.

So mark your prices a little higher so people will have room to talk you down. Then you’ll both walk away happy.

Label Everything

People hate to guess what your prices are. And you’ll also run into people who are shy and don’t want to ask how much something costs unless they’re certain they want to buy it. That’s why it’s best to clearly mark your prices.

Make Things Easy to Find

Staying organized can help you sell a lot more. If you’re getting rid of a bunch of clothes, keep similar sizes together so people will see all the selections you have in that size.

Keep all your kitchen items in the same area so people don’t have to search through everything to find what they’re looking for.

Keep Plenty of Change with You

Nothing can put the skids on your sale faster than running out of change. You’ll look like a rookie and you’ll lose sales. Keep plenty of small bills and quarters with you to keep you prepared for the people who pay with $20 bills.

Find a Great Date

You’ll want to pick your garage sale date carefully – it can’t just be any weekend. It should be a time when you know there will be a lot of traffic in your town. More people, more sales.

You don’t want the weather to be too cold or too hot. If you decide to throw caution to the wind and have a garage sale in the summer, try to make it during early morning hours and call it quits before the afternoon hits.


Put an announcement in your local paper, on Facebook or on Craigslist. At the very least, you should hang up some signs around town, if that kind of thing is allowed where you live. Without enough advertisement, people won’t even know you’re having a sale. If people don’t know you are, you’ll have a lot of stuff to package back up and deal with when you’re done.

Shannon Serpette is a mother of two and an award-winning journalist and freelancer who lives in Illinois. She can be reached at