What to do during the week before your garage sale

Clean the garage and front yard

First impressions count. If customers see a messy and unkept front yard and a dirty garage they will assume the goods are the same and will probably keep driving past. Spending time now will just mean a quick going over the day before your garage sale.

Not everyone will come prepared to buy, so...

Other things you will need

Go to the bank to get about $50 in mixed coin and about another $50 in small bills.

The prices you have on your items will affect what change you need. For example if you plan to only deal in multiples of 10 cents (ie nothing ending in 5c amounts) you won't need to bother with 5c pieces. If you have some big-ticket items (eg. furniture or large appliances) then you will need a couple of $20 bills too to break a $50 or $100 bill. To give you an idea of the mix, a suggested break-up is:

While you're at the bank, get some extra coin wrappers or bags to bag up all the money you'll have at the end of the day.

Are you borrowing or hiring tables?

Good sized tables are 8' x 30". Pick them up and check you will have enough table space.

Get things ready to keep the kids occupied enabling their parents to be less hurried and spend more time shopping

Start writing up and attaching price tags and labels

Make sure the price tag is positioned so it can be seen without the need to pick up the item and turn it over. This will reduce the chance of breakages or your nice table arrangement being messed up. Easily seen prices will also help customers decide if they are interested in the item or not.

Are you having a "Lemonade Stand" too?

Start getting together disposable, cups, plates, straws, napkins, etc. Buy cans of soda or juice when on special. Start baking. Refer to best 'Lemonade Stand' tips for more information.

Do you have a pile of items you think have no or little value?

Great. Put them in a box marked "FREE". It's been reported that this results in people less likely to haggle as much on the other priced items.

Start preparing your decorations

Start organizing how you want to decorate your garage sale. As mentioned earlier, if you are having a Christmas-in-July then decorate with Christmas decorations & lights, inflatable snowmen, fake white snow on the ground, cardboard icicle cutouts on the gutters, etc.

Start choosing and organizing your background music

To ensure your garage sale is a success you will have to have background music playing.

Choose easy-listening music (70's or 80's) like The Beatles, Beach Boys, Simon and Garfunkle, Fleetwood Mac, Enya, etc (from CDs or a radio).

Give your garage sale an air of mystery or a bazaar-like feel by draping colorful table-cloths over tables, chairs and hanging on walls. Burn scented candles or incense. Play exotic music and dress the part.

Start planning and preparing your signs

Photo by: -sylvia

Start thinking about what signs will be needed to go on the streets, around the yard, on the tables and for advertising and how they will be affixed. Refer to Best garage sale sign tips for more information.

Put up your flyers

Place flyers on community boards, shops windows, school notice boards, and other relevant locations. Refer to Flyers that spread the word for more information.

Arrange for an ad

Check the 10-day or 7-day weather forecast and if it looks OK, arrange for an advertisement to go in your local and/or city newspaper and online. Refer to Ads that attract buyers for more information.

Are you selling some of your plants?

Put the seedlings or cuttings you prepared a few weeks ago into small paper cups with some potting soil.

Start making your pinwheels

If you are going to use pinwheels as attention-getting decorations for your signs and/or front yard, start making them now. This is a great job for the kids. Go to http://www.pinwheelsforpeace.com/ for instructions on making pinwheels and ideas on how to use them. Make some extra ones to give to kids on the day to keep them occupied while their parents shop.

This is going to be your best garage sale ever!

 

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