Sunday, June 17, 2012


Yep, $192.70...that's how much I made on my Saturday yard sale.  Not too shabby.  I know, I've heard all about people making fantastic money doing these things but, for something that was pulled together in a week, I'm not complaining.

This was only my second time doing one of these and this will probably be the last although I said that several years ago, after the first one.  So, now that I'm a veteran at this, I've come away with some key points...
  1. Advertise, advertise, signs all over town, tell your friends and family, where a sign on your back the week before.  It makes all the difference.
  2. Talk to people.  Say good morning, hello, great weather, how's your mother...even the ones who look crazy as they finger through your personal stuff.  You never know, that person could be the one with that $100 bill who came to buy up your collection of old socks.
  3. Work with a friend.  While you're trying to make a sale, someone has got to watch out for those other people trying to make off with your sock collection.  And then someone has got to watch the store while you go get the wine.
  4. Haggle...most people love to haggle...and let them win.  It gives people a sense they've won something.  And, if you've lost a $1 in the sale, it's're getting rid of stuff and making room for more junk in your attic.
  5. Don't lie...just be selective.  I sold a lawn mower for $15.  I originally wanted $20.  It wouldn't start and, to get it repaired, it would have cost $85 for the service and, besides, I have someone cutting the grass.  The guy from a block over bought it and must have taken my advise about a spark plug and air filter because about 30 minutes after he left, we heard the machine start up.  I did a drive-by and his lawn looks great.  Now, on the other hand, the size 16 woman who bought my size 6 capris did not ask me if I thought they would fit her.
  6. Do not get sentimental...honestly, you really don't need those Christmas lights from 1992 just because they were on your first Christmas tree in your first house.  And the trees are pre-lit now...really!
  7. Face reality and I'm specifically referring to all those size 6s and 4s on the clothing rack.  I fondly remember those days but I highly doubt I'm going to be visiting the size 4 or 6 racks anytime soon.  And, as I face reality, I'll be watching for some young thing in my favorite size 4 pin-stripe pencil skirt.  Maybe it will give me incentive.
  8. Know the key sale hours...OK, your sign says 9 AM but people show up at 8:30 AM and start sifting through your stuff as you're bringing it out..and then they don't buy anything!  Ugh!  Then, around noon, the second wave comes in.  These must be the people who are hoping you're ready to give up and put 'FREE' signs on everything because the noon-day sun in burning through the top of your head.  And finally, the end-of-the day group arrive hoping all the neat stuff that was there at 8:30 is still there and you will make any deal just so you can avoid lugging it up to the attic again.
  9. Be bi-lingual for a least when it comes to prices.  Uno?  No, dos.  Uno?  No, dos.  Uno?  No, dos.  Uno.  Ok, uno already.
  10. Have fun, socialize, joke around, catch up on the neighborhood gossip, meet new people.
Yep, I really did have fun and yep, it was hard work...especially the cleanup.  But, I came away with cash in my wallet, was able to put a full tank of gas in the SUV, and treated my mom to dinner.  That's a good day.  Hope you had a good one too!


  1. My grandmother was the yard sale queen. I think she would buy stuff just so she could eventually sell it at a yard sale. She would have a big neighborhood yard sale, and I would buy more junk from the other people than she was selling.

  2. I have so much stuff to get rid of it's not funny but I've never had a yard sale. They are a lot of work! Somehow I don't think I could bring myself to bring back in all the items that didn't sell. Good for you!!

  3. Love this post .. if you ever decide to do this again let me know and I'll come bring crap, er, wonderful stuff from my closets and I'll help .. and check out Crumpler's Haven .. I got one, I know I am insane but I didnt love love the LowPro .. it was a tad bulky for toting and well .. I returned it bless B&H return policy and me not taking off the tags ... the Haven will fit inside my favorite summer bags AND will serve to protect the camera/lens in transit inside my rolling/carry on .. I am test driving it this week in Santa Fe .. xo

  4. ha! you made no reference to wine but i see the glass is empty!
    in my case, there needs to be a #11. have someone better with numbers be in charge of money transactions. ;o)

  5. You did pretty good on your yard sale. I had several and only made $5 on one and $10 pn the other! But on the last one I made $300. I enjoyed reading your tips. Great picture as always!

  6. Every time I think about the work that a garage sale would be I take a bag of stuff to Goodwill - I'm just too lazy . . .

  7. good tips, helene! i'll be doing a g-sale with my daughter this weekend... i don't have a lot to contribute as i declutter all year long and take stuff to the second hand store regularly (no where to store those g-sale items)...

  8. Good for you! I loathe garage sales and have had only about two in my life. We joke that one day we'll have a huge one before we move to the nursing home. :)


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