7 Tips to Have a Successful Garage Sale

7 Tips to Have a Successful Garage Sale

It is garage sale season, and I am about to take on my very first garage sale.

Growing up, some of my family members participated in a multi-family garage sale, and it was one of the most popular garage sales in their city.  I learned so much about having a successful sale just from participating myself a handful of times.

Because I do not want my first sale to be a waste of time, I have done my research! So, I’ve compiled a list of tips to set myself and you up for a profitable and successful garage sale.

Plan your date and stick to it!

Planning a date ahead of time will give you plenty of time to declutter your house and to organize all your items for the sale.  Speaking from personal experience, if you keep putting off setting a date, the sale may never even happen! It may also be a good idea to consider having the sale for multiple days to draw a larger crowd.  Having your sale during a city-wide or neighborhood sale also would increase turn out.

Consider having a multi-family sale

Multi-family sales attract more people.  They tend to be larger and have a diversity of items.   Having more people involved also means more help during the actual sale.


It is a great idea to use a yard sign.  Make sure your writing is big enough and clear for people to see.  Keep it simple! Stick to main points such as address and date/time.

Consider posting in local Facebook groups or garage sale groups in addition to your own page.  It’s beneficial to make a summary of items you have for sale, and make sure to include pictures!

Have an organized system

Here are a few ideas to organize your sale:

  • Group like items together
  • Consider alphabetizing books and movies
  • Put most items on tables
  • Sort clothing by sizes
  • Hang up clothes if possible
  • Spread things out so there is plenty of space for shoppers to navigate and look around
  • Put big-ticket items in an easy to see spot to attract more people to stop
  • Keep it clean!
  • Make sure the clothes you are selling are recently washed
  • Dust your items before displaying them
  • Wash and clean kitchen items (no one wants to buy a plate that still has a bit of food left behind)

Advertise prices clearly

Make sure your prices are marked clearly and are easy to find.  Sticker dots work great for pricing.

Avoid having too many items that are labeled “negotiable.”  It can be time-consuming for everyone if shoppers have to find you and ask you how much items cost. I personally would feel a little awkward asking!

Here is an easy system for pricing when participating in a multi-family sale: everyone is responsible for pricing their own items.  You can assign each family a sticker dot color, or you can have everyone put their initials next to the price.  When the customer purchases the items, remove the dot and insert it into a notebook that is divided in sections for each family.   At the end of the sale, just add up everyone’s section to distribute the earnings.

Be ready to make change

Go to the bank for change.  I would suggest having at least a roll of quarters, $20 in ones, $30 in fives, and $30 in tens.

Wishing you a very successful garage sale this year, and I can’t wait to see your advertisement in the Cedar Rapids Moms Facebook Group!

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